Dozens of Nuu-chah-nulth-aht came to the St. Peter’s Church Hall in Nanaimo on Dec. 13 for an Urban Gathering. (Denise Titian photos)
Dozens of Nuu-chah-nulth residents of Nanaimo accepted the invitation of the Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council’s Quu'asa department and sat down for a festive turkey dinner at their Urban Healing Gathering.
The event took place Dec. 13 at St. Peter’s Church Hall in Nanaimo. Guests were treated to refreshments and mingled during the time leading up to dinner.
There were tables set up around the room where people could find health information, employment opportunities or they could make cedar bark crafts with Ditidaht elder Geraldine Edgar-Tom.
Children occupied themselves with colouring and they danced while the drummers sang.
A private area was set aside for brushings.
Cathy Holmes of Nanaimo Family Life Association was there to talk about a program called Wise Folks on Shaw Cable 4 in Nanaimo.
“We are always looking for unique and interesting guests,” she said before inviting people to contact her to share story ideas.
Emcee Stan Matthew introduced NTC President Dr. Judith Sayers and Vice-president Andy Callicum.
“Thank you on behalf of the NTC and we look forward to chatting with you – hearing what your community is like,” said Sayers.
“We are happy to be here today; happy to have the opportunity to meet the people and for the opportunity to use our language,” said Callicum.
The vice-president began his dialogue by introducing himself Nuu-chah-nulth style in his language, saying who his parents and grandparents are and sharing what communities he has ties to.
Tseshaht elder Willard Gallic opened things with a Nuu-chah-nulth prayer and asked people for a moment of silence to remember the ones that were lost.
Ed Ross then invited people up to join in the singing of the Nuu-chah-nulth song.
The people were served up a catered turkey dinner by NTC staff.
The event was coordinated and funded through the Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council’s Teechuktl Quu'asa Program.