Category Archives: Indigenous Nations History

Naaʔuu, come together and feast, celebrates Tla-o-qui-aht culture with their own narrative

By Alexandra Mehl, Ha-Shilth-Sa, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Tofino, BC – Among round tables, in a traditionally inspired longhouse, Naaʔuu invites community members to gather and celebrate Tla-o-qui-aht culture for an evening. 

On March 16 the evening began with Hjalmer Wenstob, co-host and artistic director for Naaʔuu, along with singers welcoming guests with a paddle song. Soon after, the room filled with sounds of laughter and conversation as plates were brimming with salmon, mussels, and bannock, an abundance of coastal cuisine made by Heartwood Kitchen.

Wenstob said this event was an opportunity to tell Tla-o-qui-aht’s narrative from their own perspective.

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Ni’isjoohl memorial pole is coming home

Windspeaker, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

The Nisga’a Nation, and especially the house of Ni’isjoohl, is celebrating a Dec. 1st announcement from the National Museum of Scotland. It will return a memorial pole that was stolen from Nisga’a territory and later acquired by the museum.

“In Nisga’a culture, we believe that this pole is alive with the spirit of our ancestor,” said Sim’oogit Ni’ijoohl, Chief Earl Stephens.

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Spill to Sustenance

Six years on from the fuel spill that devastated Heiltsuk waters and clam gardens, the nation is pulling together to proactively build food sovereignty

Originally published on the Watershed Sentinel

by Jamie-Leigh Gonzales

The central coast rainforest, with its horizons of emerald islands roamed by wolves, orcas, and bears, is a source of life and wellbeing for all peoples who live there. The Heiltsuk Nation have lived off their land since time immemorial, and their culture is deeply rooted in the land and marine ecosystems. They continue to protect their relationship with the land against extractive industry and ongoing colonial practices that seek to eradicate Indigenous land stewardship.

In 2016, the Nathan E. Stewart tug ran aground, spilling over 110,000 litres of diesel oil in Heiltsuk waters of Gale Creek Pass. The devastating impacts on marine life and the surrounding ecosystem continue today, nearly six years after the spill. A healthy clam beach has yet to return, and the site remains a danger to the marine life, such as herring, salmon, and kelp, that once thrived there.

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The History of Residential and Day Schools

By Chadd Cawson, The Columbia Valley Pioneer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Many people have heard about residential schools but are uneducated about them. And too many have known about the horrors and injustices that happened within the walls of them, but for too long their voices were never heard. First Nations, Inuit, and Métis children were taken from their families, communities, and culture for over 150 years. During this period, over 150,000 children attended what were then called Indian Residential Schools. Many never returned home to their families.

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Manitoba: Westman ride to honour residential school survivors

By Miranda Leybourne, Brandon Sun, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Next week residents of Waywayseecappo, Birdtail Sioux and Canupawakpa First Nations as well as Sioux Valley Dakota Nation are embarking on a ride — whether that’s on horseback, bicycle or by foot — to spread awareness of the former residential school system in Canada.

Participants will convene in Waywayseecappo on Sunday to begin the journey with a breakfast at 10 a.m., followed by a blessing at 11. From there, they will travel to the site of the former residential school in Birtle, located 142 kilometres northwest of Brandon, at noon.

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