News

Ceremonies Integral to Returning Salmon to the Columbia Region

June 15th, 2017

Westbank, BC Syilx Okanagan Territory: From June 15-20th, 2017, a series of five Salmon Ceremonies will take place throughout the Columbia Basin. These Salmon Ceremonies empower Syilx Okanagan people throughout the Territory, providing the opportunity to both honor their ancestors and continue to conduct ceremony for the successful return of the salmon. All locations are historical fishing and harvesting sites of the Syilx Okanagan people from time immemorial.

June 15, 2017 snqʼəqʼulaʔxntn (Kettle Falls) Salmon Ceremony & Canoe Journey

June 16, 2017 sɬuxʷqaynm (Castlegar) Salmon Ceremony

June 17, 2017 skx̌ykntn (Revelstoke) Salmon Ceremony

June 19, 2017 nʕaylintn (McIntyre Dam) Salmon Ceremony & Chinook Fry Release

Okanagan Nation Alliance (ONA) and the Inchelium Language House Association (ILHA) have joined in partnership over the years to host these ceremonies that will start at snqʼəqʼulaʔxntn (Kettle Falls, WA) and will include a canoe paddle. This will be followed by a second ceremony taking place the next day at sɬuxʷqaynm (Millenum Park, Castlegar, BC). Both these days start by gathering along the banks of the river to pray for the return of the salmon which will then be followed by a lunch and a giveaway.

In addition, during the ceremony at nʕaylintn (McIntyre Dam) there will be a ceremonial release of 15,000 Okanagan chinook Columbia Okanagan Sub- Basin. Such ceremonies and releases contribute to kł cp̓əlk̓ stim̓ (to cause to come back) and are central to Syilx communities food security. Our people are committed to support the efforts of our people for the return of Salmon to the Upper Columbia Basin.

“Partnerships and Tribal collaboration are at the heart of this work. The ONA, along with Colville Confederated Tribes (CCT), have worked for years in order to re-introduce sc’win (sockeye salmon) into the Okanagan natural habitat. These Tribal partnerships continue on many fronts, such as the Chinook restoration plan amongst other initiatives to ensure all our species and habitats are restored and protected. These are our sacred responsibilities entrusted to us by our Creator. Therefore, our People are very excited to finally launch our first pilot year of releasing summer chinook fry into the Columbia Basin system,” affirmed Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, Chairman, and ONA.

For more information please contact:

Howie Wright, ONA Fisheries Manager E: HWright@syilx.org  T: 1-250-728-5215


Okanagan Nation Continue Bringing Home Salmon to Okanagan Lake

June 6th, 2017

Okanagan Nation Territory (Westbank, British Columbia): Starting June 6, 2017, the Okanagan Nation Alliance’s (ONA) kł cp̓əlk̓ stim̓  Hatchery will be providing sockeye salmon fry for releases taking place at 6 Mile Creek, Trout Creek, and Mission Creek. The releases of 230,000 fry are in recognition and celebration of the Syilx peoples’ continued successful efforts […]

2017 Okanagan Nation Sockeye Salmon Fry Release

May 17th, 2017

WHEN: Wednesday, May 17th, 2017. 9:30am – 11:00am WHERE: Penticton Channel, off Hwy 97 & Green Mountain Road, Penticton, BC. Please drive slowly. Parking will be available along the left side of the Dyke and behind the Save on Gas station. Due to higher than normal water levels we are asking people to be particularly […]

Okanagan Nation Alliance’s Annual Spirit of Syilx Youth Unity Run

May 10th, 2017

WHAT: The Annual Spirit of Syilx Youth Unity Run will begin at Blanket Creek Provincial Park, heading north to Revelstoke, on to and around BC Hydro’s Mica Dam. In total the Run will go through 309 km of the Okanagan Territory, ending at Martha Creek Provincial Park. We are estimating around 120 Syilx youth to […]

A Statement from Friends & Family in Regards to the Roxanne Louie Verdict

April 8th, 2017

First, we want to thank our communities within the Okanagan for their continued support. Specifically, we want to thank those who came forward with information when Roxanne first went missing. Thank you to all those who showed their support during the “Prayer Walk” while Roxanne was still missing. We believe the added pressure from community support finally drove the Robotti’s to confess their crime. Thank you to everyone who organized and attended rallies at the Penticton courthouse during the bail hearing and preliminary hearing. Thank you to all the organizers of the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women’s annual vigil on February 14th. Additional thanks to the UBCO Women’s Resource Centre for holding Tea Talks on Missing and Murdered Indigenous women. These events are crucial for raising awareness and empowering Indigenous voices. Additional thanks to the Osoyoos Indian Band and the Okanagan Nation Transition Emergency House (ONTAH). Also, special thanks to Okanagan Nation Alliance emergency response team for their support throughout the trial.

Verdict Provides Initial Steps Forward for Family and Community

April 7th, 2017

Okanagan Nation Territory/Westbank BC: The Louie and Hall family have endured years of arduous judicial processes and litigation in regards to the murder trial of Roxanne Louie, yet in the face of these challenges they have found the strength and resiliency to persevere. Justice here is found in both the verdict, as well as in […]

B.C. Court Confirms Rights in Arrow Lakes

March 27th, 2017

Syilx Okanagan Nation Territory, Westbank BC:  The Okanagan Nation Alliance (ONA) is welcoming the provincial court’s March 27, 2017 Desautel decision. The decision arose as a result of hunting charges laid by the Province against Rick Desautel in 2010. The court acquitted Desautel and held that the descendants of the Sinixt continue to exist and […]

A Letter of Gratitude on Terra Madre Day

February 3rd, 2017

As Terra Madre Day 2016 nears the Okanagan Nation Alliance (ONA) would like to take the opportunity to thank Slow Food Thompson Okanagan, Slow Food Canada, Slow Food Turtle Island and Slow Food International’s continued support in sharing the story of the return our sc’win and advocating for indigenous food sovereignty in general.

At the core of our connection with Slow Food is a set of shared values around the deeper significance of food and food systems, not only for sustenance, but for the well-being and resilience of people, cultures and ecologies. The key tenants of Slow Food “good clean and fair” food resonates with our indigenous perspective and experience, particularly regarding social justice, conviviality and the sacred nature of food that connects all of us. On Terre Madre Day the Syilx Nation acknowledge the importance and significance of this day set aside for reflecting upon our actions. We stand with our sisters and brothers around the world in our hard work advancing food security efforts for our beautiful peoples, beautiful lands, resources, and sacred waters. We look forward to collectively furthering these practices in the year to come.