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Islands Trust Council Makes Reconciliation Declaration

    Indigenous News    March 19, 2019

The Islands Trust Council acknowledges that the lands and waters that encompass the Islands Trust Area have been home to Indigenous peoples since time immemorial and honours the rich history, stewardship, and cultural heritage that embody this place we all call home. The Islands Trust Council is committed to establishing and maintaining mutually respectful relationships […]

Pipeline Activism: Thoughts On My Trial, Part 2

    Health & Wellness, Indigenous News, News & Events    March 18, 2019

I’m back from the rabbit hole of court – the B.C. Supreme Court, in downtown Vancouver. Last fall, I spent five days there, self-representing my not guilty plea, after arrest for protesting on March 23rd in front of Texas oil-giant Kinder Morgan’s tank farm in Burnaby, now Trans Mountain Canada, owned by all Canadians. Three […]

Xwaaqw’um Snuhwulh Canoe Launch

    Indigenous News, People & Places    September 30, 2018

After almost 6 months of work, the Xwaaqw’um Snuhwulh (canoe) was launched today to the delight of all the relations who joined to celebrate the launch. Dancing, songs and ceremony were led by local elder Tousilum (Ron George). The new Snuhwulh (Canoe) was named Xwaaqw’um and given to elder Tousilum as a gift for years […]

Interpretive Panels Moves Forward with Boost from Heritage Legacy Fund

    Art & Design, Indigenous News, People & Places, Travel & Transportation    July 3, 2018

Island Pathways is receiving a much-needed boost of $4100 to support its interpretive panels program, which will highlight the history of heritage locations and building along the Ganges Village Pathway Network. The funding comes through the Heritage Legacy Fund, the only provincial grant program that supports heritage conservation, awareness, planning and Indigenous partnership projects. Island […]

Work Progressing on the Xwaaqw’um Big Canoe – Carver’s Host Fernwood Nature Class Visits

    Indigenous News, People & Places    June 1, 2018

The 32’ foot-long snuhwulh (big canoe), carved from a single 710 year old X’pey (western red cedar tree) downed in a river valley windstorm will be finished over the next month or so for the Xwaaqw’um Project (aka Burgoyne Bay). “The Hul’q’umi’num word for canoe is snuhwulh, which means to transport people,” says Joe Akerman, local community organizer for the Xwaaqw’um Project […]

Salish Sea Featured in Latest Langscape Magazine

    Indigenous News    December 21, 2017

“Reconnection and Reconciliation in the Salish Sea, Pacific Northwest” is the specially featured section in the Winter 2017 issue of Langscape Magazine. Three writers from around the Salish Sea region contributed stories to this section. On Salt Spring Island, Joe Akerman comes home—literally and metaphorically—to Hwaaqw’um, a village site of his Quw’utsun (Coast Salish) ancestors, […]

An introduction to First Nations’ history in the Gulf Islands

    Indigenous News    June 20, 2017

The east coast of Vancouver Island is a rolling forested plain that narrows towards the south where the mountainous spine of the island edges towards the sea, and two rivers, the Cowichan and Chemainus, drain the ancient forests through valleys and fertile deltas. Offshore, a maze of smaller islands forms a seemingly impassable wall along […]

Photos and Video: 2017 National Aboriginal Day at Xwaaqw’um

    Indigenous News    June 19, 2017

Local community and First Nations gathered this past weekend to celebrate National Aboriginal and Father’s Day at Xwaaqw’um Beach (Burgoyne Bay). The family friendly cultural gathering was a celebration and learning about Coast Salish culture and traditions to nurture “Sound Relations” between settlers and First Nations peoples. The gathering included stories from the land, Tzinquaw […]

BC Ferries Unveils New Long Harbour Ferry Hull Wrap

    Indigenous News, News & Events, Travel & Transportation    April 13, 2017

Today at BC Ferries’ Richmond refit facility, the wrap adorning the hull of Salish Eagle was unveiled to Stz’uminus First Nation’s John Marston, who designed the artwork that was revealed last September. Coast Salish artist John Marston’s bold depiction of beautiful red eagles adorning the hull of the new vessel represents the strength and respect […]

Videos and Photos: Xwaaqw’um (Burgoyne Bay) Welcome Pole Unveiling Ceremony

    Indigenous News    August 22, 2016

Four generations of Quw’utsun Tzinquaw Dancers danced the unveiling of the new Xwaaqw’um (Burgoyne Bay) Welcome Poles carved by local Cowichan Master Carver Harold Joe this past Saturday on Salt Spring Island. The ceremony attended by over 200 locals, family, friends and relatives of Hul’qumi’num community members was an unprecedented event in the recent colonial […]

Tsuhatluts, The Dangerous, Fierce, Powerful being of Salt Spring Island

    Indigenous News    July 20, 2016

Salt Spring Island is famous for many things— the Saturday market, the scenery, the cheese, the beer and a woman who tried to abduct children and eat them. Many years ago at the north end of the island there was a small village at P’q’unup (“white shell ground”) with a healthy population of young children. […]

Power and Lightning on the Mountain – The Indigenous Story of Mount Tuam

    Indigenous News, Local News    May 3, 2016

Dominating the southwest end of Salt Spring Island is Mount Tuam, another distinctive iconic island landscape and the only local placename to retain a semblance of the original SENCOTLEN and Hul’q’umi’num’ word—CUAN or Ts’uween (pronounced “ts – uWHlAN” approximately). The word is descriptive and refers to the steep terrain that seems to come straight down […]

Snuw’uyulh and the Sansum Narrows Monster

    Indigenous News, People & Places    February 29, 2016

An important part of snuw’uyulh (putting the thought in the child’s head/cultural teachings) is sxwi’em’ (“sh-why-m” approximately)— a great Hul’q’umi’num’/Sencotlen word that describes ancient times, places in the landscape, and narratives. The root of the word is “change” or “transformation” —the only constant thing in the universe. These stories are connected to landscapes that by […]

Indigenous History of Salt Spring Island

    Indigenous News, News & Events, People & Places    February 3, 2016

In this series we will look at the Indigenous history of Salt Spring Island from the perspective of snuwuyulh (“snuh-WHY-ulth” approximately)—a Hul’q’umi’num’ word broadly translated as “cultural teachings.” The word has a literal meaning of “putting the thought into the child’s head”—a reference to a learning process that occurred from an early, indeed, prenatal stage […]

Video: Kanaka-Salish Family of Isabella Point

    Indigenous News, People & Places    January 18, 2016

Chris Arnett gives a talk at the Salt Spring Historical Society. He draws on many years of research and oral history. Archival photos and maps help illustrate local landmarks and significant historical events in the lives of Salt Spring’s First Nations families, Hawaiian and European settlers. Video: Peter Prince / saltspringvideo

Video: The Archeology of Shiya’hwt (Ganges)

    Indigenous News, Local News    December 9, 2015

Learn more about this town of ‘Ganges’ that we live in and around on Salt Spring Island. Archeologist Chris Arnett recalls the fascinating First Nations history of Ganges Village, known by the name of Shiya’hwt to its original inhabitants. For thousands of years Coast Salish people carried on their cultural traditions and harvested the areas […]

Video: Grace Islet Benefit Concert

    Indigenous News, News & Events, Photos & Videos    November 28, 2014

On Saturday Nov. 22 a special Benefit Concert and Silent Auction was held to help protect Grace Islet, the First Nations burial ground in Ganges Harbour that is being desecrated by construction of a private home. Opened with a traditional prayer by highly respected Elder Luschiim (Arvid Charlie) and a song by his nephew Louis […]

First Nations History of Shiya’hwt (Ganges Village)

    Indigenous News, Photos & Videos    November 11, 2014

Archeologist Chris Arnett recalls the fascinating First Nations history of Ganges Village, known by the name of Shiya’hwt to its original inhabitants. For thousands of years Coast Salish people carried on their cultural traditions and harvested the areas abundant resources, until epidemics decimated their population and the coming of the Europeans changed their way of […]

Community News

  • Fire News: Chief’s Response Report – 201...

    by on 19 hours ago

    Response Report: Salt Spring Island Firefighters responded to 58 calls the month of August. Operations The Ganges Fire Hall suffered two roof leaks over the month with the light summer rain. To rectify this issue before winter arrives a roofer and an engineer are needed. Work has been undertaken to arrange both of these tasks. […]

  • Wet Weather Notes from the Garden

    by on September 18, 2019

    The early onset of wet, cold, windy fall weather is catching a few late summer crops at a tricky time. Here are some notes on what to do right now, including responses to questions I’ve been asked recently: Seeds: If you are saving some of your own seeds this year and they are still out […]

  • Elizabeth May – Listening is the P...

    by on September 17, 2019

    As we open the menu for Canada’s election, how will Canadians choose the healthiest possibilities? Who looks most appetizing? We really must investigate the ingredients, starting with the one we know best, here in Saanich/Gulf Islands. Elizabeth May lifted a glass to us when she said, “It is the community spirit of our area that […]

  • 100 Men Who Care Launched on Salt Spring...

    by on September 16, 2019

    Part of being alive is the desire to help others through action. While there are many ways to accomplish this philanthropy, one common way is to give generously of our wealth and abundance. Who hasn’t donated to their favourite charity or not for profit organization? Doing so benefits both our neighbour and ourselves. However, most […]

  • Video and Photos: 2019 Salt Spring Fall ...

    by on September 15, 2019

    Friends, neighbours and visitors, welcome to the 2019 edition of the Salt Spring Island Fall Fair, an island tradition since 1896, celebrating the Agricultural Community’s efforts and successes. Our island has a rich and varied agricultural history and tradition that spans more than 150 years, since Confederation. The Salt Spring Island Farmers’ Institute, established in […]

  • Transition Salt Spring Leads New Climate...

    by on September 15, 2019

    The Climate Action Group, a project of Transition Salt Spring, is developing a citizen-led climate action plan to address the climate emergency. The plan, due to be released Spring 2020, will focus on the island’s transportation, food systems, land use, buildings and infrastructure and natural systems. This past August, they formed a steering committee to guide […]

  • 2019 Salt Spring Chamber Salty Awards &#...

    by on September 12, 2019

    Make someone you know a Salty Award winner! – Presenting the Salt Spring Community & Business Awards! Winners will receive a Salty Award and 29 awards will be given out two areas – Business and Community. You can nominate one business or community group/area per session during the nomination process. You will then be able […]

  • Artists from the Fringe: Nick’s St...

    by on September 10, 2019

    In this series, we share stories from Art Jam participants. Art Jam – a volunteer-run program of the Salt Spring Arts Council – provides a safe, welcoming space for members of our marginalized community, where they can be defined as creators and artists, rather than by the challenges they regularly face. By celebrating their unique […]

  • 2019 Pride Parade Photos and Video

    by on September 7, 2019

    Another beautiful celebration of Pride on Salt Spring Island today. Thousands of locals and visitors lined the street to celebrate the 15th annual Pride and the 12th celebration of the Pride Parade all through the streets of Ganges. Few communities the size of Salt Spring can boast of the energy and excitement and pride of […]

  • Affordable Rental Housing Cottages Surve...

    by on September 4, 2019

    Please join us on Saturday, September 7th for a Community Information Meeting regarding Bylaw No. 512 (Affordable Rental Housing – Cottages). This is an opportunity to learn more about the project and discuss the proposed rezoning of approximately 400 properties on Salt Spring Island to permit cottages for full-time residential rental, instead of “seasonal cottages” […]

  • Salt Spring Island Foundation Marks 35 Y...

    by on September 4, 2019

    We all know that great trees grow from tiny seeds, which makes the tree logo of the Salt Spring Island Foundation particularly appropriate. Thirty-five years ago, John C. Lees planted a $10,000 seed that has grown to a $7.5 million endowment fund solely for the benefit of Salt Spring Island charities. Since then the Foundation […]

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