A young person stops by to learn about the process of maintaining the hide. (Claire Palmer photo)

Métis Nation hosts buffalo workshops

The buffalo was harvested in February through a grant from Interior Health

The Métis Nation Columbia River Society hosted a series of workshops on the preservation of a buffalo hide this past week, with more planned for the future.

The buffalo was secured through a sizeable grant through Interior Health and was harvested from the Rocky Mountain Buffalo Ranch in the Blaeberry in February.

The buffalo was a part of a food security program, with the meat feeding between 30-35 families in the area.

The hide has been in the process of being prepared to be used as a robe since February, going through a salting process, as well as a bath and shampoo before being stretched out for the workshops.

“The buffalo is so important, it really was the livelihood of the Métis and Indigenous people,” said Caren Nagao, president of the Métis nation society.

“It provides food, clothes, tools and housing, the four most important aspects,” said Jesse Jobin.

The buffalo were hunted to near extinction hundreds of years ago, according Nagao, as a way of controlling the Indigenous and Métis nations who depended on the animal to survive.

The workshops provide an important opportunity to teach the importance of the buffalo and get the youth of the community involved in the activity.

“Back in the day, they didn’t hunt the buffalo, they straight up killed them to exterminate the Métis and Indigenous populations, the ended up starving,” said Monica Lavoie.

“It’s of the utmost importance to us to involve the youth, they really are our future.”

Youth have been involved every step of the way, from the skinning that took place at the ranch to the final product.

The trio says the support for the workshops from the community has been astounding, with the Columbia Basin Trust pitching in to help cover the costs, as well as the RCMP donating shampoo for the maintenance of the hide.

The supplementary funding from the CBT and other organizations will allow the Métis society to offer the opportunity to send youth to a hunting camp this fall and maintain other programs such as these workshops.

Metis Hunting

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Okanagan Correctional Centre outbreak due to training session: Interior Health

Interior Health said in a statement the staff members were at an off-site training session

Morning Start: A Texas law allows astronauts to vote from space

Your morning start for Friday, August 14, 2020

Invasive mussel monitoring stations detect 10 boats

Boats were headed to Okanagan and Thompson regions

COVID-19 outbreak at Okanagan Correctional Centre, involves 3 staff

Three staff involved in possible exposure, health officials say

Roots and Blues festival to kick off virtually on Friday

Watch the festival on Black Press Media website platforms, for free

STANDING TALL: Forestry workers meet the challenges, remain hopeful

A look at the forest sector in B.C. – and those hoping for the best – amid mill curtailments

Parkinson SuperWalk goes virtual throughout B.C. due to COVID-19

People encouraged to walk around their neighbourhood, along community trails, through parks, forests

87-year-old Salmon Arm woman sinks hole-in-one

The Aug. 12 ace is Helen Bobbitt’s fourth.

COVID-19 exposure on WestJet flight to Kelowna

Those in WestJet flight 461 from Calgary to Kelowna were possibly exposed

Missed rent payments ‘cause of COVID-19? You have until July 2021 to pay up

Each monthly instalment must be paid on the same date the rent is due

U.S.-Canada pandemic border restrictions extended into September

‘We will continue to keep our communities safe,’ says Public Safety Minister Bill Blair

578 British Columbians currently infected with COVID-19

Seventy-eight new cases confirmed in past 24 hours

WE Charity registers as lobbyist, lays off staff, looking to sell real estate

WE Charity said its financial position has been greatly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic

Piano set up in Penticton downtown

Initiative an effort to bring music and creativity to the streets

Most Read