Touch The Earth

Touch The Earth

This program was funded by a grant from the Community Radio Fund of Canada and the Government of Canada’s Local Journalism Initiative.  A local youth attended an IndigenEYEZ training series: the goals are 5 fold: to strengthen the way that we walk in the world through the five modules – connecting to myself, to others, to community, to our cultural strengths, and to the land. I work for IndigenEYEZ, and attended Touch The Earth facilitator training… excitingly, my daughter Sofia was invited by the director as a youth trainee.  We travelled to the Okanagan, this session of the training was held at Headwaters Lake Camp. When I arrived at the camp, I visited with director Kelly Terbasket- in a cozy cabin on Headwaters Lake.  Cortes Currents: Odette describes an IndigenEYEZ training series: Touch the Earth Wáy [hello]  Kelly Terbasket. HI everyone, I’m Kelly Terbasket. I’m the director of IndigenEYEZ, I’m one of the co-founders, and I’m also one of the lead facilitators. IndigenEYEZ is about renewing relationships. Renewing our relationships with each other, and with the land. Snqsilxw means ‘sharing one skin’. We share a membrane with each other, including all our relations. And our mission is to strengthen those- our connection and our relationships. With the land, with the water, in order to become stronger stewards of the land. And remember our responsibilities to the whole. IndigenEYEZ is medicine for relationships. And that includes our relationship with the land, and with our water. That we remember, and revitalize our traditional teachings and values and principals… that remind us that we do ‘share one skin’ with all our relations. Snqsilxw means we...
Signs of Spring On Cortes Island

Signs of Spring On Cortes Island

The following program was funded by a grant from the Community Radio Fund of Canada and the Government of Canada’s Local Journalism Initiative. This story is about small acts of community building for kids on Cortes Island. Signs of Spring was a community art project- in which children’s artwork were displayed in their driveways during the Corona Virus Outbreak of 2020. Cortes Currents: Odette Auger talks about Signs of Spring The hope was that the kids taking part could see that they are all part of a bigger picture and that they are experiencing the situation together.  For 17 years, I’ve been working with island children in a range of settings…in all my work, art making has brought the group together.  When COVID19 hit, my kids were also impacted in different ways- a university student couldn’t return to her kitchen job at Hollyhock, a grade 9 had been recognized with an Indigenous student award, and the very day of the award ceremony, all school district activities were cancelled.  She returned to public school to finish her last year of Cortes schooling with friends in class- not now… and a 7 year old sorely missed his friends and classroom.  I read about WindowsUK project and knew we could do this on Cortes, tweaked a little for our rural island reality.  When times are hard, it could go many ways… but I’m a hopeful type by nature, and I was dearly missing my young friends in the schoolyard at lunch time, and at afterschool programming… so I felt the need for Community-building spirit to blaze stronger than ever right now. That’s why I applied for a neighbourhood grant...
Jesse Recalma Comes To Cortes Island School

Jesse Recalma Comes To Cortes Island School

This radio broadcast was funded by a grant from the Community Radio Fund of Canada and the Government of Canada’s Local Journalism Initiative.  Jessie Recalma, Qualicum First Nation, is a self-taught contemporary Coast Salish artist. Cortes Island School Parent Advisory Committee fundraises every year for an Arts/Music program. I offered to help coordinate artist visits, and as an Indigenous person and artist, wanted very much to see this happening. We were grateful to hear Jessie was willing to drive from Qualicum Beach for an artist talk series; meaning he was sharing a 14 hour day with us- leaving at dawn to get to Cortes School to share with 2 classrooms- intermediate and senior. Cortes Currents: Odette Auger reports on Jesse Recalma’s visit to Cortes Island School My Name Is Jessie Reclama He includes his intentions for the demos in his introduction to the classrooms. “My name is Jessie Reclama, I’m from the Qualicum First Nation, and I am a full time artist and a part time language teacher… and so I am here today to share a little bit about my artwork and my art styles and my art form, and sort of looking about how we can engage… between ourselves and Indigenous art” Jessie brought his tools, carvings, and gave an insightful talk and demo; sharing skills and Indigenous ecological knowledge with the youth.One of the interesting things about what Jessie shared…. was ​the manner​ it was shared in. Traditional Ecological Knowledge As an ​Anishinaabe-ikwe​, I have a deep appreciation -​ and I notice right away​- when teaching is done in a holistic, interdisciplinary way. Jessie started with an introduction, and...
Language Warrior

Language Warrior

Language Warrior is a story about Jessie Louie, and her life’s work preserving and revitalizing ʔayʔaǰuθəm a distinct dialect of Northern Salishan. Jessie knows the value of reclaiming language as a source of strength; a treasure to preserve, and a key to survival. Jesse Louie Language Warrior by Odette Auger, Deep Roots Island Waves There is only one fully fluent speaker left who speaks this at Klahoose, and less than a dozen fully fluent speakers in total left on our planet. This is why the name Language Warrior truly is fitting. The good news.. Linguists say even endangered languages can revive, if people have a choice, and an opportunity to learn. Jessie shares her story on how residential school attempted to stifle her language, and how she lived a life working to hand her language down to younger generations… “there is hope… I know it will carry on through these young people who put their heart and soul into it”. Odette Auger, Sagamok Anishnabek: The past 5 years have been focused on fundraising and project management, youth programming. With Deep Roots and Island Waves, I have thoroughly enjoyed the collaborative process, and am excited to have facilitated new and ancient talent, skills, specialists and voices to our community. The opportunity to also write and produce in this series is an...
Stand Your Ground

Stand Your Ground

The electoral system was brought by the Canadian government and imposed upon nations who with hereditary chiefs. It was was meant to bring equality and prevent oppression. If this has happened, it is only through the strength, determination and honour of leaders like Jessie Louie. Klahoose First Nation Stand Your Ground by Odette Auger, Deep Root Island Waves She was the first woman chief of Klahoose, elected at a time when women in leadership roles were few. Jessie was the chief who brought water to Klahoose… a perfect metaphor for a woman who is a source of strength and support for her loved ones. That water still flows, and like all Jessie’s work, ripples outward with lasting effects. Returning to Squirrel Cove in the late 1990s, she was elected to counsel three times. Chief Kevin Peacey is her son. “Be humble and respect your people” is Jessie’s advice to leaders, and she quietly leads the way in all her work. Jessie’s life is a legacy of promoting Indigenous women’s rights in communities, inspiring healthy paths as drug and alcohol counsellor, and preserving culture for the future as language coordinator. E’mote Jessie Louie, and also thank you to voices collected in tribute to Jessie: you will hear Chief Kevin Peacey, councillor Michelle Robinson, language warrior Jacqueline Mathieu, community member Georgina Silby. Odette Auger, Sagamok Anishnabek The past 5 years have been focused on fundraising and project management, youth programming. With Deep Roots and Island Waves, I have thoroughly enjoyed the collaborative process, and am excited to have facilitated new and ancient talent, skills, specialists and voices to our community. The opportunity...