Announcing 2021 Cultural and Responsive Neighbourhood Small Grants!
We are honoured to share nearly 30 grass-roots community projects that will be receiving Neighbourhood Small Grants this year! This time the focus was on culture with a special emphasis on Nuu-chah-nulth Culture. More than half the projects are led by Nuu-chah-nulth community members in their communities. There are also a number of general COVID-responsive projects.
Another special element to this NSG cycle is that the Tofino-Ucluelet Culinary Guild is supporting food-related projects by providing in-kind grocery items in addition to the cash grants from CBT. As usual, the West Coast Community Resources Society, our community partner for creating the cheques for community members. NSG makes empowering, accessible opportunities for residents from all demographics rise up and make their communities more inclusive, vibrant places to live! It’s a joy to share the projects below. Check them out and reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to connect to a project leader and participate!
Fall 2021 Neighbourhood Small Grants
Rising Tide Nuu-chah-nulth Surf Team – Selena Lasoto, Esowista/Tla-o-qui-aht
A neighbourhood feast on Esowista Beach for members of a Nuu-chah-nulth youth surf group. Learn more about this epic indigenous surfing project here: https://www.risingtidesurf.com/
YFN Culture Practice – Skylene Patrick, Hitacu/Yuułuʔiłʔatḥ
Cultural drumming and singing and dancing has not been happening in Hitacu due to COVID-19 and this grant will help bring it back (safely) during these challenging community times.
Introduction to Carving – Dennis Hetu, Macoah/Toquaht
Carving workshop from Macoah carver Dennis for community members looking to try carving for the first time. The project will test the waters for Dennis’ dream to run a larger carving mentorship project.
Maaqtusiis Youth Hunting group – Charles Thomas, Ahoushat
This project will provide food and transportation for a cultural hunting trip for Ahousaht youth. Any meat they get will be distributed through the community in good reciprocal ways, but this is as much about being together out on the land as it is about getting food.
Cultural care packages (food) - Pat Charleson, Hot Springs Cove
Another youth hunting project, getting young community members out on the land, intergenerational connection and providing traditional food for the community.
Pride Cupcakes – Marlo Firme, Ahousaht
Marlo is a teacher at Maaqtusiis High School – this is a youth led project that makes pride cupcakes for all Ahousaht community members on Valentines day.
Ahousaht Pride Art Show – Nicole Dumas, Ahousaht
The pride club at Maaqtusiis High School wants to gather and create art. They will invite the community to make art too, then have a sweet exhibition around the community and do an art walk. The project has a large reach and great alignment with the other pride cupcake event from the Ahousaht Highschool!
Consent based cultural harvest – Rachel Dickens, Tofino
Rachel is a diabetes dietician with Nuu-Chah-Nulth Tribal Council and she plans (on her own time, not for work), to host a traditional foods harvesting workshop with a facilitator focusing on health and consent with the land.
Paddle Project – Darlene Dick, Ahousaht
The goal is to purchase supplies to make as many 3 foot dancing paddles as possible with community members. The paddles are used in cultural dancing. They will be used at potlatches and tribal journeys.
Community Giving – Mena Duncan, Ahousaht
This is a project to create Christmas hampers around the holiday season for Ahousaht families in need. It will provide food and good cheer during what can be a dark time of year.
Little Music Connections – Rachel Hirst, Tofino
Music workshops for non-verbal children. The instruments would be stored at the community hall and owned by Tofino Parks and Rec during and after the project. This is one of the first NSG projects in our region ever to focus on persons with divergent abilities.
Ahousaht Warriors Volunteerism Unity – Tom Paul, Ahousaht
Field trip for a group of Ahousaht Youth up to Megin River cabin that was recently built to do volunteerism development work.
Bread and Fried Bread – Annie George, Ty-Histanis/Tla-o-qui-aht
This is Annie’s fifth NSG project and all of her projects have been super successful and creative. She will be teaching community members how to make the comfort foods of bread and friend bread, sharing kinship and togetherness through the process.
Chamaapii (refers to balancing) – Nora Martin, Ty-Histanis/Tla-o-qui-aht
With the sale of the Tofino Botanical Gardens, Tla-o-qui-aht has an opportunity to start running healing initiatives on the property for indigenous community members on the coast. This project will support cultural healing initiatives to start immediately.
Every Child Matters – Elizabeth George, Ty-Histanis/Tla-o-qui-aht
Elizabeth will be organizing a group of people to work together to make gifts for residential school survivors. She’s done this in the past and known it to be a really positive thing for her community.
Sharing Grammas teaching for love of crafting – Lisa Sabbas, Ahousaht/Hesquiaht
This is a knowledge sharing project in a really large extended Nuu-chah-nulth family. The grant will support the creation of epic cultural handicrafts inspired by the family matriarch.
Alley Fest – Kevin Hawker, Tofino
Block party style event where residents whose homes back onto an alley across from Common Loaf in Tofino will gather to have a barbecue and have a critical conversation about the colonial practices of naming places.
Mentor Apprentice Hours – Janey Thomas, Ahousaht
Opportunity to connect family members who are fluent in the Ahousaht language, and work on her own ability to speak it. She will then share her learnings with community. Janey says, the more she learns, the more she plans to share.
Food Care packages – Tom Campbell, Ahousaht
This project will support Tom in leading a food harvest, likely hunting ducks, and preparing it as a big feast/distributing to community.
Scorpion Queens – Joanna Humphries, Tofino
Women’s body-boarding group focused on bringing together women (especially new mothers) for healthy, empowering physical activity in nature, and connection between women lifting each other up and supporting trying new things.
Weekly Baby Group for New Moms – Megan Burns, Ucluelet
Vancouver Island Health Authority has not been running its normal Family Ties (new mom group) program due to COVID, so new moms in Ukee have been gathering weekly to build community and support each other. The grant will provide healthy snacks and perhaps thank you gifts for guest speakers.
Tofino Chess Masters 2022 – Susane Dyrchs
Chess tournament to bring together diverse age and demographics in the region. The Chess boards will be owned by Tofino Rec department after the event is done.
Shoe Box Project – Kelly Deakin, Ucluelet
This project will help assemble packages for families in need to make fun crafts and gift-making together leading up to the holidays. Names of recipients will come from food bank, senior’s home, and Ukee COOP.
Indego Rodeo Natural Dye Workshop – Tara Warkentin, Tofino
Natural dye workshop hosted by Tara. Tara has been experimenting with different natural dyes and wants to share what she knows about dyeing fabric with natural pigments. The workshops will be done in COVID-responsive ways.
Cards, Chakras, and Crystals – Loesha Newmyer, Tofino
Loesha will be offering a fun workshop for children to make crafts and play. This is the second time she has applied for an NSG for this in the past he project went really well!
Youth-led beach cleanups – Kevin Bradshaw, Ucluelet
This is a youth-led project that will see local teenagers organizing and conducting beach cleanups around the Ucluelet area.
Tofino Hospital Team Building – Emily Thicke, Tofino
Hospital staff have been highly challenged by the pandemic and the project would support an evening event for staff to bond and enjoy each other’s company outside the stressful hospital environment.
Community Vocal Lessons – Selena Rogalsky, Tofino
Free singing lessons to have one-on one explorations of voice for 8 individuals.
Ocean Park Holiday Lights – Jody Kirk, Tofino
This grant will support a Christmas light contest in Tofino’s Ocean Park neighbourhood. There’s a trophy from a previous grant and a local business will donate a prize. Money will support hot chocolate and snacks and carafe rental and solar lights, etc.