Congratulations qʷyqʷʕayáx̌n: stim aʔ ckistxʷ What do You do?

August 10th, 2020

The Okanagan Nation Alliance would like to congratulate qʷyqʷʕayáx̌n Levi Bent on his new book “stim aʔ ckistxʷ what do you do?”

If you wish to purchase a copy and support qʷyqʷʕayáx̌n Levi, email nxastatkw Elizabeth Bent at:

” I have been involved in learning and teaching nsyilxcen for over 10 years and am eager to share nsyilxcen language and culture to children and families in a fun and new light. Being a second language learner myself, I am aware of the unique challenges that we deal with in acquiring our language. It is with complete honesty that I wish to use my talents to help bring back the language of our ancestors” – qʷyqʷʕayáx̌n Levi Bent

Update: Access to sx̌ʷəx̌ʷnitkʷ (OK Falls) fishery

August 6th, 2020

August 4, 2020

In his new role as Syilx Okanagan Nation Tribal Chair, Chief Clarence Louie and his team met with the Assistant Deputy Minister of the BC Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development yesterday afternoon to discuss the access issues at the sx̌ʷəx̌ʷnitkʷ (OK Falls) fishery.

BC expressed its willingness to work with the Nation to secure safe, unfettered access to the fishery for our members. BC committed to working with the ONA to identify and implement permanent solutions moving forward. Chief Louie, Tribal Chair, and his ONA technical negotiation team will provide further community updates on this important issue as discussions continue with BC.

2020 Recipients of the Building a Better Future Bursary

July 30th, 2020

Each year the Okanagan Nation Alliance and Fortis BC provide two awards of $1200.00 to financially support eligible Syilx/ Okanagan Nation members enrolled or accepted into a recognized university or college on a full-time basis in a minimum 2 year program. Additionally we have received donations from  Hi-Trax, Lance McLean (PIB) and Progressive Fence, thus we were able to offer two additional $1200.00 bursaries.

This year the Okanagan Nation Alliance is pleased to announce four bursaries as part of this years Building a Better Future Bursary Program. The 2020 recipients are:




July 28th, 2020

tkwəɬniwt (Westbank), Syilx Okanagan Territory: The Okanagan Nation Alliance (ONA) is pleased to announce that Chief Clarence Louie of Osoyoos Indian Band has been elected by the ONA Chiefs Executive Committee as Tribal Chair and spokesperson of the ONA. Chief Louie is the longest standing Chief within the Nation and will no doubt provide strong leadership based on his years of experience, knowledge and past service to the Nation.


PRESS RELEASE – ONA Announces Chief Clarence Louie as Tribal Chair


Mission Creek Restoration Initiative Effectiveness Monitoring, 2016-2019

July 15th, 2020

The Mission Creek Restoration Initiative (MCRI) is a multi-stakeholder partnership formed in 2008 to address declining fish stocks and restore natural function to the lower reaches of Mission Creek, located in Kelowna, BC.

Phase I restoration began in 2015-2016 in a stretch of Mission Creek downstream of Casorso Road, where 540 m of the southern dike trail was setback. This setback resulted in 18,000 m2 floodplain re-engagement and side channel reconnection. In addition, habitat features were installed and four notch pools were excavated in left bank to re-meander the stream. Adaptive management occurred in 2018 to improve side channel flow patterns and remove accumulated sediment. In 2019, boulder clusters in two different formations were installed to direct flow into meander notch 2 and to increase habitat complexity.

Post-construction monitoring of fish habitat and site use has been conducted annually since 2016 to document effectiveness and inform adaptive management.

Read the report here: ONA_MCRI Effectiveness Monitoring 2019 FINAL

ONA is happy to continue working with the MCRI Steering Committee to bring back the health of Mission Creek.  Many thanks to the Steering Committee:

  • BC Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development
  • Central Okanagan Land Trust
  • City of Kelowna
  • Fisheries and Oceans Canada
  • Friends of Mission Creek
  • Okanagan Nation Alliance
  • Regional District of Central Okanagan
  • Westbank First Nation

The Okanagan Nation Alliance looks forward to continuing to document the successes and challenges of these projects as part of the larger vision of Okanagan Nation Elders in healing the watershed and kł cp̓əlk stim̓ – ’cause to come back’.




2020 Syilx Okanagan Nation Member Graduate Form

May 14th, 2020

Calling all Syilx Okanagan Nation Member 2020 graduates!

If you are graduating or know someone who is graduating please complete the google form:

The Okanagan Nation Alliance would like to recognize and acknowledge all Syilx Okanagan Nation members who are graduating this year. If you are graduating or know someone who is graduating please complete the form.

University of Alberta Salmon Health Research Project 2020

May 4th, 2020

The University of Alberta releases an Article titled Traditional Food, Health, and Diet Quality in Syilx Okanagan Adults in British Columbia, Canada which conducted research within the Okanagan Nation and analyzes health indicators and diet quality among 265 Syilx Okanagan adults. Due to COVID-19 the Research Team could not present to communities directly as previously planned.

This study is a component of the Okanagan Salmon and Our Health Study, which is a joint project between the Okanagan Nation Alliance, University of Alberta, Université de Montréal, and Syilx communities. The objective of the overarching study is to document the health and health equity outcomes of the Syilx Okanagan Nation initiatives that led to the reintroduction of Okanagan sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) in the Okanagan River upstream of Osoyoos Lake.

If you are interested in learning more please review the following documents:

Traditional Food Health and Diet Quality in Syilx Okanagan Adults

Diet Quality infographic April 9 2020



March 18th, 2020


tkwəɬniwt (Westbank), Syilx Okanagan Territory: On March 18, 2020, as of today, ONA offices are only open for staff. Over the next few days, ONA staff will be transitioning to working from home as much as possible to mitigate risks and to ensure we do our part in keeping Nation members and partners safe. During this time, we remain committed to fulfilling our responsibilities to our Syilx Okanagan Nation families and communities. We will continue to be available by phone, email, or social media. The following staff may be contacted if you have any questions:

  • Pauline Terbasket, Executive Director – 250-878-6242
  • Jennifer Lewis, Wellness Manager – 250-826-7844
  • Howie Wright, Fisheries Program Manager – 250-718-5215
  • Cailyn Glasser, Natural Resources Operations Biologist – 250-469-1595
  • Carol Roberts, Financial Administrator – 250-707-0095 ext. 207
  • Charlotte Armstrong, Executive Assistant – 250-707-0095 ext. 208
  • Tara Montgomery, Communications Lead – 250-862-6866

ONA, Covid-19 Communiqué

March 16th, 2020

All service recipients and contractors in ONA workplaces are requested to please refrain from in person visits to ONA offices, workplaces and worksites, and to utilize phone calls, conference calls, e-mail or any other form of electronic messaging as means of communication with the ONA, until further notice.

Travel outside of Canada is not advised. Those who do so are required to upon return, self-quarantine for a minimum of 14 days.

If you are in close proximity of others, it is advised to stand or sit two meters (six feet) apart in an attempt to contain the possibility of spread.

Please actively implement recommended prevention measures of spread by: a) Wash hands frequently for at least 20 seconds with warm soapy water b) Use alcohol based hand rubs if a sink is not available c) Do not touch your eyes, face or mouth with unwashed hands d) Cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze and use a tissue. If a tissue is not available, cough or sneeze into your elbow e) Regularly clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces.

  • Stay home if you are sick with any symptoms to contain spread of Covid-19.
  • Self-isolate if other family/household members are self-isolating or are sick with any symptoms.
  • Anyone who is concerned that they may have been exposed to, or is experiencing symptoms of Covid-19, should call: HealthLinkBC at 811 anytime.

The Public Health Agency of Canada has also set up a: Covid-19 telephone information line 1-833-784-4397.