The Okanagan Nation Alliance is proud to announce our new book, qʷʕay snk̓lip Blue Coyote by Billie Kruger, which will be launched at the Okanagan Nation Wellness Gathering November 20, 2019. Billie is an Okanagan Nation interdisciplinary artist from the Okanagan Indian Band. She studied at the En’owkin Center and Paul Creek Language Association and is a beginner speaker of the nsyilxcәn language. Billie has created many works: sewing, beading, and traditional art practice. She has a strong connection to the land and her ancestors to which she attributes her success as an artist.
The book is a contemporary Syilx captikwł about snk̓lip, a gorgeous being created by k̓ʷəlncutn to rid the world of nʔaɬnaʔsqilxʷtn in preparation for the sqilxw that would come. snk̓lip was made to be courageous, strong, and intelligent and was gifted with special powers to aid him in transforming the nʔaɬnaʔsqilxʷtn. snk̓lip was confident in his abilities to carry out this important job, sometimes a little too confident. Eventually, after battling countless nʔaɬnaʔsqilxʷtn so bravely, the burden of the enormous responsibility began to ware on snk̓lip. He became exhausted and his anxiety grew with each battle. snk̓lip fell into a deep depression and was filled with shame, hate and anger towards himself. Even the support of his friends and family could not help him, only snk̓lip could help himself. Through ceremony, connecting to the land, and sharing his story could snk̓lip begin to heal and reclaim his power.
The Okanagan Nation Alliance is committed to ensuring that our captikwł, our nsyilxcən language, and our Syilx teachings continue to shape our path forward. This book was created as a resource in hopes that it will create a greater awareness of mental health issues while providing an opportunity for greater mindfulness of the importance cultural identity and community play in the well-being of First Nations. A growing body of research shines a light on how such connections to community and land cannot only prevent, but also restore physical, mental and spiritual well-being of our people. These cultural practices of connecting to our land have always been an intrinsic part of Syilx life.
At the direction of the Chiefs Executive Council, a Recognition Agreement was negotiated with the federal government to protect and advance our Syilx Nation’s collective Title and Rights. This would require the federal government to make a significant funding commitment to support the Syilx Nation’s work to develop and implement our Syilx Nation governance. Even […]
Brittany Mullin Brittany has completed her Bachelor of Dental Science at UBC Vancouver, and is setting her sights on the next academic endeavor. In September 2019 Brittany will begin a Master’s in Public Health program at The University of Victoria. She wishes to broaden her lens and work more with communities, helping those who may […]
tkwəɬniwt (Westbank), Syilx Territory: From August 27-28, 2019, the Okanagan Nation hosted the ‘Purple Ribbon Campaign Caravan” as part of International Overdose Awareness Day. This Caravan saw people from across the Syilx Okanagan territory rally and travel to various communities, sharing resources and bringing awareness to the issue of the pervasive drug and opioid crisis […]
tkwəɬniwt (Westbank), Syilx Territory: On July 31, 2019, the Okanagan Nation Alliance (ONA) will host the “Syilx Well-Being: Nation Drug Forum”. This Drug Forum is part of a broader stream of work carried out by the ONA that affirms our continued commitment to bring awareness to the issue of the pervasive drug and opioid crisis […]
tkwəɬniwt (Westbank), Syilx Territory: The ONA congratulates Syilx Okanagan Nation member, Coralee Miller, as the artist of the 2019 Okanagan Nation Salmon Feast logo. Every year the Okanagan Nation Alliance (ONA) has a Nation community member create an original design to represent the annual Okanagan Nation Salmon Feast. As Coralee states ” I am of […]
In the spirit of partnership and reconciliation, a landmark agreement to explore salmon reintroduction into the Columbia River Basin between the Syilx Okanagan, Ktunaxa and Secwepemc Indigenous Nations, Canada and British Columbia was signed today in Castlegar. The Letter of Agreement is a commitment by the five governments to collaborate on exploring the reintroduction of […]
Upholding their mandate to protect and advance Syilx People’s Title and Rights, the Chiefs Executive Council has been negotiating with Canada at a Recognition of Indigenous Rights and Self-Determination table. We know who we are. Through this process, the government of Canada can finally and formally tell itself and all of its bodies to recognize […]
Way’ Chiefs, Councillors and Membership, Following the Okanagan Nation Alliance (ONA) Annual General Assembly of July 17-18, 2019, it is important to emphasize that the proposed Recognition Agreement process is one of de-colonization where we as members of the Syilx Nation finally hold the power to decide how we are to govern our collectively-held territorial […]
The Okanagan Nation Alliance is proud to release the digital publication of our 2018-2019 Annual Report. The Annual Report is developed every year to support the ONA Annual General Assembly, and illustrates the breadth and depth of the work that takes place throughout the organization over the past fiscal year. It also represents our continued […]