Monday, July 27, 2009

2nd Annual Traditional Foods Conference

On April 17th and 18th, the Snuneymuxw First Nation in Nanaimo, BC hosted the 2nd Annual Conference on Traditional Foods of Vancouver Island First Nations. This event was supported by the Aboriginal Diabetes Initiative (Health Canada), Aboriginal Health (Vancouver Island Health Authority), BC Healthy Living Alliance, Fisheries and Oceans Canada and the Vancouver Island University. For complete details go to:

Over 250 people from over 30 Nations gathered to celebrate the traditional foods of Vancouver Island First Nations and to discuss and learn about the four pillars of Nutrition, Healing, Safety and Community.

Please see attached conference agenda for more details:

Day 1 of the gathering was held at the new Vancouver Island Conference Centre in downtown Nanaimo. The day’s events featured: presentations that focused on both science and traditional knowledge; song, dance and prayer; digital stories; a short documentary screening; public recognition to all the youth at the conference; and finally, closing with an Elder’s Circle with an open discussion. In the evening there was a traditional foods Feast and cultural evening of song and games (Lahal) hosted by Snuneymuxw First Nation in their beautiful Long House.

Day 2 of the gathering was held at the Snuneymuxw Community Kitchen & Longhouse. The day was set up as a Traditional Foods Fair and included a Pit Cook and bentwood box cooking demonstration, as well as a Traditional Foods Fear Factor competition between forty youth from all over Vancouver Island. This event was particularly successful at exposing the young people to their Traditional Foods in a fun, interactive and energetic way. Not only did day 2 engage the youth but it highlighted many of the key community champions who are working hard at improving the food, land and culture in their communities.

Overall, this two day gathering was a huge success and garnered plenty of enthusiasm for 2010’s Vancouver Island Traditional Foods Conference.

PICTURES - Visit the Traditional Foods of Vancouver Island First Nations Flickr group. If you would like to join this group, click on the following link (or copy and paste it into your web browser). Then you can see what this group is all about!

Submitted by:
Kate Kittredge
Traditional Foods Conference Coordinator
Healthy Community Development ConsultantSuite B 1351 Vining St., Victoria, BC V8R 1P5 Canada(office) 778.430.1243 l (cell) 250.213.6695 l (fax) 778.430.0621(email)

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