DOH LAND-BASED HEALING PROGRAM WELCOMES WIIKWEMKOONG COMMUNITY TO AKWESASNE
The Mohawk Council of Akwesasne’s Land-Based Healing Program (LBH) welcomed members of the Wiikwemkoong nation to Akwesasne. The purpose of the visit was to create a partnership and share ideas and resources that would benefit both communities. The Wiikwemkoong nation members who attended serve various roles in their home territories, such as mental health services, education, land-based practices, and youth and community services.
The Wiikwemkoong Unceded Territory is a First Nation steeped in the Indigenous culture and language of the Anishinabek. Their territory is centered on Odawa Mnis and the surrounding islands in Lake Huron.
Over the course of the 2-day visit, which took place on October 19th and 20th, LBH staff welcomed their guests with an opening ceremony and provided an overview of the Land-Based Healing program, a presentation on the importance of self-care, a teaching on the significance of wampum by Allen Smoke, received a tour of the Sahatiharára:ne Detox Center, as well as sharing our cultural practices and community resources. Guests were also honored with songs from local singer and artist Bear Fox, as well as going through a small condolence ceremony with cultural educator Aronhiaies Herne.
LBH staff and the Wiikwemkoong members held discussions on what shared services and collaborations can take place in the very near future. “We look forward to collaborating with the Wiikwemkoong nation,” said Brandon David, Program Manager for Land-Based Healing. “Many of the issues we face here in Akwesasne are similar to what they are facing. We want to share our ideas and resources to assist in any way that we can, because, as Indigenous people, I feel it is vital we continue to build relations with other First Nations and assist our sister territories where we can.”