Canoes from around Southeast Alaska and Canada arrive at the Mike Pusich Douglas Harbor to participate in a Welcoming Ashore ceremony on Tuesday, June 5, 2018. The event, sponsored by the One People Canoe Society, is the unofficial start of Celebration 2018. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire)

"To Preserve and Maintain the Yakutat Tlingit Language and Worldview"

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We work to provide Native American students the tools necessary to succeed
on their educational journey from
Headstart to High School Graduation.

Haa Yaakwdáat Lingít Yoo X'atángi Kúdi

The Cultural Heritage Department is operating an ANA grant 90NB0014 entitled Haa Yaakwdáat Lingít Yoo X’atángi Kúdi, Our Yakutat Tlingit Language Nest. The goal of this project is to increase proficiency in youth ages 2-7 by establishing and operating a Lingít language nest. The Yakutat Tlingit Tribe will also pilot and expand the current Lingít language resources and curriculum, compiling these lessons into a Teacher Workbook that will be available to second language Tlingit Language teachers…  Read More

culture camp '17

The Yakutat Tlingit Tribe Cultural Heritage Department hosted its 3rd annual Culture Camp Program on June 21st-July 1st, 2017. In the past two years we have focused on “Why you are who you are,” a mantra the elders of Yakutat have frequently used to inspire the young people. It is a concept that will encourage campers to respect themselves and traditional tribal values, to learn and understand the clan system that they belong to, the family they are connected to and the world of nature that surrounds them. We encourage students to stay active, fit and practice living a native lifestyle. We discussed staying positive and humble, eating healthy, respecting the laws of nature and reciprocity between the raven and eagle clans. We sang and danced together, connecting us to our ancestors through language and story. We usually have 30 attendees from Yakutat and around the region, however this year we hosted 80 campers ages 1-17. The staff to support our campers required two overnight counselors for the girls and two overnight counselors for the boys, two cooks in the cookhouse and 13 Native American and Alaska Native teachers and mentors to instruct campers in Tlingit Language and storytelling, to harvest fish, seal and berries, canoeing, beading, weaving, skin sewing, carving and painting. Funding for the culture camp was from private donor Julia Bevens, Rasmuson Foundation, BIA, ANA, Tlingit and Haida Indian Tribes of Alaska Childcare Funds and an Environmental Department’s BIA fund.

Canoe Journey

In 2017, the Yakutat Tlingit Tribe purchased a 39’ open water, fiberglass canoe. The artwork for the canoe was open to all Tribal members and non-members in a formal RFP process and awarded to David Robert Boxley.

 

The Cultural Heritage Department continues to build programs around this canoe that include safety and wellness. In the past, Yakutat tribal members have participated in journeys by borrowing canoes from Alaska Travel Adventures without having practiced at all. This canoe allows our members to practice and participate in future journeys without having to depend on entities outside of Yakutat. Practicing is essential to the safety and success of the journeys. There are times on these trips that members are required to paddle for hours at a time in extreme wind and rain without breaks. Being in strong mental and physical shape will help ease the journey for paddlers and will also contribute to the safety of the group.

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