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Talking Stick – Fall 2017

Updates from Coast Funds

Talking Stick - Fall 2017
Talking Stick – Fall 2017

Published throughout the Great Bear Rainforest and Haida Gwaii, the Talking Stick explores conservation science, stewardship, sustainable development, and community well-being initiatives led by First Nations. Download the print issue: Talking Stick – Fall 2017 (PDF – 639 kb).

This month, we’re honoured to share stories from Wei Wai Kum Nation and Old Massett Village Council, who have embarked on strategic and very different approaches to community-owned tourism businesses. As with every story in Talking Stick, they’re capsules of longer stories available online.

This season, we’re excited about key initiatives that First Nations are preparing to launch soon, and which Coast Funds is proud to be supporting. Grand openings are in the works for the Kitasoo/Xai’xais Nation’s new stewardship office in Klemtu, which promises to increase stewardship and conservation research; and for the Heiltsuk Nation’s new Wáglísla community grocery store in the heart of Bella Bella. Nisga’a Nation is also close to opening Vetter Falls Lodgeand finishing the development of the Hlgu Isgwit Hot Springs, both located within Anhluut’ukwsim Laxmihl Angwinga’asanskwhl Nisga’a (a.k.a. Nisga’a Memorial Lava Bed Park).

At our Annual General Meeting in July, our Members (representing First Nations and the Funders) reappointed Darcy Dobell, Wally Eamer and Garth Davis to the Board. Our Fall Board meeting will take place in Campbell River, where Board members from across the coast will learn more about First Nations’ recent investments—like Wei Wai Kum Nation’s ambitious expansion of Thunderbird RV Park & Resort (the topic of this edition’s cover story), the Ha-ma-yas Stewardship Network created by a collaboration of coastal Nations, and Homalco (Xwémalhkwu) Nation’s grizzly bear-viewing business and salmon conservation efforts.

We are privileged to present stories that First Nations are sharing in Talking Stick. If you’d like us to publish your story, please reach out to us at

Darcy Dobell
Communications Committee Chair

Brodie Guy
Executive Director

Stories from the Great Bear Rainforest

Wei Wai Kum Nation’s Seaside Cottages Boost Tourism in Campbell River

By expanding a reliably performing tourism business—Thunderbird RV Park—Wei Wai Kum Nation is investing in economic development to reach new markets, providing significant new sources of revenue and employment for its people.  Read Wei Wai Kum’s Story.

Thunderbird RV Park constructed four new seaside cottages and 18 additional fully-serviced RV sites. Photo by Coast Funds.
Thunderbird RV Park constructed four new seaside cottages and 18 additional fully-serviced RV sites. Photo by Coast Funds.

Old Massett Village Council Transforms a Haida Village Site

On the site of an important Haida village on the northeast tip of Haida Gwaii, Old Massett Village Council has launched a promising venture in cultural revitalization and economic development: Hiellen Longhouse Village. Read Old Massett’s Story.

Hiellen Longhouse Village resides in the cool coastal forest of Haida Gwaii. Photo by Jason Shafto.
Photo by Jason Shafto.

Strengthening Community Well-Being: Creating Family-Supporting Jobs

Just as Wei Wai Kum and Old Massett Village Council have highlighted in their stories, First Nations across the Great Bear Rainforest are creating new employment opportunities that enable people to remain in their remotely-located home communities with family-supporting income levels.

Since 2008, First Nations have created 767 permanent new jobs through projects they’ve invested in with Coast Funds.

In less than ten years, First Nations have created employment for more than 10% of their working-age community members through Coast Funds supported projects.

Learn more about job creation and how projects are strengthening community well-being.

Download the Print Edition

Talking Stick - Fall 2017
Talking Stick – Fall 2017