The poster for phase one of IndigenEYEZ’s “Re-Centering Women Through 13 Moons.” Photo: IndigenEYEZ

The poster for phase one of IndigenEYEZ’s “Re-Centering Women Through 13 Moons.” Photo: IndigenEYEZ

Strengthening Syilx women’s identities, ties to the land

Phase one of ‘Re-Centering Women Through 13 Moons’ will see 10 women engage in six land-based sessions, while others are invited to participate in six online sessions

The first phase of a three-part program series designed for Indigenous women living in the Okanagan is scheduled to begin on April 8.

The free initiative aims to strengthen the participants’ Syilx-woman identities, voices and their relationship to the land.

Until Sept. 9, IndigenEYEZ will host 12 “Re-Centering Women Through 13 Moons” sessions — six online and six on the land. Each land-based session will see 10 women aged 14 and older attend, while an unlimited number of people are invited to participate in the online sessions.

“Because of the reality of the impacts of colonization and residential schools, the multigenerational trauma, the dislocation from our traditional roles and dislocation from land — all those impacts have been most severe on Indigenous women,” said Kelly Terbasket, co-founder and program director at IndigenEYEZ.

Terbasket, who is facilitating the four-hour-long land-based sessions alongside Anona Kampe, said that to strengthen Indigenous women is to strengthen Indigenous capacity.

“We’re reigniting; we’re strengthening the relationship with all our relationships. How do you do that? You have to get away from your everyday busy lives, get on the land, be still and silent, listen and feel,” said Terbasket.

The in-person sessions will include a pictograph hike near Skaha Lake, where Kampe will share her knowledge of landmarks, plants and medicines and Terbasket will lead interactive land-based activities.

“Not everybody knows our landmarks. We picked those ones to make sure that our own people know our landmarks, that we’re part of protecting them and making sure that there’s no further deterioration or disruption,” said Terbasket.

Many of the discussions out on the land, she continued, will revolve around healing, renewing and transformation. Discourse also includes exploring how colonization has impacted the traditional roles of Indigenous women.

She emphasized that the program’s definition of women is inclusive — those who are Two-Spirit, Indigiqueer, transgender or non-binary are invited to participate.

The six online sessions each have their own target audience: there’s an interactive workshop for youth and adults who are part of the LGBTQ2S+ community. There’s also a session on lullabies and stories in Nsyilxcen for women with babies and toddlers and a Nsyilxcen digital art lesson for youth.

“We’re strengthening our relationships across the ages, across the youth with the Elders,” said Terbasket. “A lot of those relationships have been disrupted, which is really detrimental to language and culture transfer.”

With phase two scheduled to occur on Sept. 23, she said that she hopes participants of the first phase walk away with a feeling of strengthened connection of themselves to each other and the land.

“Because of colonization, we have an imbalance of leadership. We’re mostly hearing from one part of our community, which is men and certain age brackets,” she said. “We really need to go back to our traditional models of governance, which is inclusive of feminine, masculine, youth and Elders.”

READ MORE: All Indigenous adults in B.C. now eligible for COVID-19 vaccine

READ MORE:Vernon relinquishes Ogopogo rights to Syilx Nation


@aaron_hemens
aaron.hemens@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

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

Just Posted

Elvira D’Angelo, 92, waits to receive her COVID-19 vaccination shot at a clinic in Montreal, Sunday, March 7, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
110 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

Provincial health officers announced 1,005 new cases throughout B.C.

Black Crow Cannabis is just one of Vernon's many pot shops now open in town. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
Kelowna has highest cannabis fees in Okanagan

Vernon’s 14 stores pay second highest business licence fees

The Columbia Valley Wetlands are known for their extensive and fragile ecosystem. (File photo)
Wildsight speaks out against logging in Columbia Wetlands

Located 50 kms south of Golden, the proposed operation was justified as bark beetle management

Residents, especially those with yards with long grass and wooded areas, are encouraged to check themselves and their pets for ticks after being outside. Ticks have reportedly been found in Golden near the pump track. File photo
Ticks found in Golden as spring approaches

Between five and 10 people each year go to hospital in Golden for ticks

Community forest (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
Bringing a community forest to Golden

The Golden and Area A Community Forestry Team provides an update

Vancouver resident Beryl Pye was witness to a “concerning,” spontaneous dance party that spread throughout social groups at Kitsilano Beach on April 16. (Screen grab/Beryl Pye)
VIDEO: Dance party erupts at Vancouver’s Kitsilano Beach to the dismay of onlookers

‘It was a complete disregard for current COVID-19 public health orders,’ says Vancouver resident Beryl Pye

Lord Tweedsmuir’s Tremmel States-Jones jumps a player and the goal line to score a touchdown against the Kelowna Owls in 2019. The face of high school football, along with a majority of other high school sports, could significantly change if a new governance proposal is passed at the B.C. School Sports AGM May 1. (Malin Jordan)
Power struggle: New governance model proposed for B.C. high school sports

Most commissions are against the new model, but B.C. School Sports (BCSS) and its board is in favour

Firefighters battled a burning home on farmland in the north end of Vernon Saturday, April 17, 2021. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star)
UPDATE: Homeowner taken to hospital after Vernon home destroyed by fire

Firefighters engaged in a lengthy battle against the engulfed structure Saturday afternoon

Members of the Okanagan Screen Arts Society received a cheque for $1,500 Thursday, April 15, 2021. The funds are to help the society’s efforts as they prepare take over operation of the Vernon Towne Cinema at the end of July. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star)
Okanagan dealership gives local cinema a lift

Vernon Watkin Motor Ford, in business for more than 100 years, donated to the theatre with nearly as long a history

Vernon Jubilee Hospital. (File photo)
COVID-19 outbreak declared over in surgical unit of Vernon hospital

The outbreak affected four staff, 10 patients and led to three deaths in just over two weeks

A group of youth in Kelowna's Knox Mountain Park are suspected as having violated the B.C. Wildlife Act by harassing a pair of nesting bald eagles with a drone Friday, April 16, 2021. (Conservation Officer Service photo)
Nesting bald eagles harassed by youth-piloted drone in Kelowna

Conservation Officers are hoping to hear from anyone who witnessed the Knox Mountain incident

Pall Bearers carrying the coffin of the Duke of Edinburgh, followed by the Prince of Wales, left and Princess Anne, right, into St George’s Chapel for his funeral, at Windsor Castle, in Windsor, England, Saturday April 17, 2021. (Danny Lawson/Pool via AP)
Trudeau announces $200K donation to Duke of Edinburgh award as Prince Philip laid to rest

A tribute to the late prince’s ‘remarkable life and his selfless service,’ the Prime Minister said Saturday

B.C. homeowners are being urged to take steps to prepare for the possibility of a flood by moving equipment and other assets to higher ground. (J.R. Rardon)
‘Entire province faces risk’: B.C. citizens urged to prepare for above-average spring flooding

Larger-than-normal melting snowpack poses a threat to the province as warmer weather touches down

Vancouver-based Doubleview Gold Corp. is developing claims in an area north of Telegraph Creek that occupies an important place in Tahltan oral histories, said Chad Norman Day, president of the Tahltan Central Government. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO)
B.C. Indigenous nation opposes mineral exploration in culturally sensitive area

There’s “no way” the Tahltan would ever support a mine there, says Chad Norman Day, president of its central government

Most Read