Inspiring a new generation of leaders in the North


A Dene Nahjo workshop on moose hide tanning

Dene Nahjo is a new generation of leaders and community builders working to promote indigenous leadership and advance social and environmental justice for Northern peoples.

By living, learning and celebrating their culture on the land through the guidance of elders, Dene Nahjo strives to foster emerging leaders, strengthen relationships and create long-term, positive change in the North.

“Being part of Tides Canada gives us administrative and fundraising support, so we can focus all of our energy and attention towards building relationships and creating projects across the North,” said Kyla Kakfwi-Scott, a member of Dene Nahjo’s steering committee.

“Creating a new organization takes a lot of time and effort, and plugging into Tides Canada’s existing platform and expertise has allowed us to accomplish a lot in a short period of time,” she said.

Dene Nahjo is currently organizing an Indigenous Circumpolar Women’s Gathering, to be held in Yellowknife on November 12-15. The gathering will bring together established and emerging Indigenous women leaders from across the circumpolar world for a series of workshops and panel discussions.

As part of its strong focus on cultural revitalization and commitment to traditional knowledge, the group also organizes workshops on caribou and moose hide tanning, along with traditional tool making, in the belief that the solutions to contemporary issues affecting Northern indigenous peoples are rooted in the teachings of their ancestors.

“This year has already far surpassed our expectations in terms of positive response to Dene Nahjo and the projects we are taking on. We are most excited to build relationships and networks in Denendeh and across the North to expand Dene Nahjo’s membership and the work we are able to do,” Kakfwi-Scott remarked.

“We have the circumpolar indigenous women’s gathering coming up this fall, and we are hoping to offer the tool making workshop and hide tanning camps again next year. We’re also beginning to plan for a gathering of emerging leaders in Denendeh for next spring.”

To learn more or get involved with Dene Nahjo, visit their website or find them on Facebook and Twitter @denenahjo.

Tides Canada commits to open data for its grantmaking

For many years, Tides Canada has been publishing detailed lists of grants in our online annual reports. This spring, as part of our ongoing commitment to transparency, we are building on that practice by committing to publish our grants as open data and are increasing the frequency of our reporting by publishing grants listings on a quarterly basis.

Interview with Tara Marsden, Gitanyow Hereditary Chiefs Office

Gitanyow is a community nestled along the Kitwanga River in Northwestern BC. They are represented by the Gitanyow Hereditary Chiefs to establish modern treaties and implement First Nations conservation practices and land use planning for their territory. We interviewed Wilp Sustainability Director for the Gitanyow Hereditary Chiefs Tara Marsden and learned more about the Gitanyow model of long-term conservation planning, the significance of observing and adopting First Nations values and methods in conservation, and the importance of flexible, multi-year granting.