NIDA Contest Entry

Shadren, Gros-Venture (A’aniiih) Athabaskan, Age 20, Oregon

Resilience Through Traditional Bow Making

The main purpose of the Resilience Through Traditional Bow Making project is to transfer the knowledge through hands-on teaching of how to make an Indigenous traditional hunting bow. There are several secondary purposes, including instilling cultural pride, reminding the young people of cultural teachings and protocols, helping them better understand historical and
intergenerational trauma and why some Native people choose to use substances, the importance of healing, how this traditional craft can help build and nurture their resiliency, teaching a new craft and inspiring the desire to learn more about hunting and to start or nurture their desire to hunt. The ultimate purpose is to strengthen the individual. When we are strong, we strengthen our nation.

Is it appropriate for someone who was not brought up in native culture to seek guidance from a native elder or healer?

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