Saskatchewan camp teaches everything from drum-making to colonial policies

Treaty 4 territory in Saskatchewan is the ancestral home of the Saulteaux, Cree, Dakota, Lakota and Nakota peoples.

And this week it is also home to a health- and land-based cultural camp for youth.

Traditional knowledge is being shared on how to tan hides, make hand drums and pemmican, along with modern tips on how to maintain a healthy lifestyle and stay safe.

Erica Beaufin, a member of Cowesses First Nation near Regina and an advocate for vulnerable people, spoke about missing and murdered Indigenous people.

“It may not seem as though this – an event such as today is a – could be considered a prevention or an intervention measure for someone who is missing and murdered,” she said, “but, in actuality, it’s events such as this that, first of all, may provide opportunity for families who are going through the situation to come together and to have access to spiritual and cultural support.”

Organizers say the wisdom that elders and knowledge keepers share is a safeguard for First Nations children learning about the effects of colonial policies, residential schools, the ’60s Scoop and child welfare system.

Leanne has a certificate in broadcasting and has more than 12 years of radio news experience, both as an anchor and reporter in Saskatchewan and Alberta. The Métis journalist is a passionate writer and born storyteller and loves to connect with people and learn about their life experiences.