ANCA CONNECTS: DEI Discussion Group — Indigenous, Native, Natural: What Do These Words Mean to a Living Culture?

Mar 20 2024


Time:  10-11:30am AKT  /  11am-12:30pm PT  /  12-1:30pm MT  /  1-2:30pm CT  /  2-3:30pm ET

As land-based organizations, how can nature centers honor the past and living culture of the Indigenous peoples that lived on — and may still live on — the land an organization occupies?

A group of children in a canoe on the water. In the background, a forested hill and blue sky with clouds.Students in a program at Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning Center in Finland, Minn. This program explores how Ojibwe knowledge and technologies in the 1700s had a major influence on the Fur Trade.A land acknowledgment might be part of this process, but putting our words into action is essential. In this ANCA CONNECTS program we will explore modern questions regarding Indigenous life past, present, and future, in historic spaces, including:

  • When giving a land acknowledgment, what are you actually trying to do?
  • Do you have enough cultural, political, contextual awareness of what the Native experience is historically and now to understand what your intention is?

Lizen Hayes, Executive Director of Autrey Mill Nature Preserve & Historic Center, will facilitate this program and share about Autrey Mill's efforts in honoring Indigenous cultures. Two other ANCA members will also share their experiences:

  • Mary Parr, Stewardship Manager at Pierce Cedar Creek Institute, will talk about Lake Wild Rice, Zizania palustris — also called “Mnomen” in Anishinabemowin — seeded as part of a restoration collaboration with the Match-E-Be-Nash-She-Wish Band of Pottawatomi Indians, commonly referred to as the Gun Lake Tribe.
  • Joe Walewski, Teaching & Learning Coordinator and Naturalist at Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning Center, will speak about grant-supported efforts that are happening at Wolf Ridge to reexamine how all of their programs can better support the education of Ojibwe Heritage.

This program is part of the ANCA CONNECTS: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Discussion Group, which allows professionals in our field to share experience and insights with each other, exchange relevant resources, and make plans for action. Anyone who wants to advance DEI efforts within their organization is welcome. If you’re just curious about this work, starting out recently, or you have years of experience, we invite you to join us for learning and sharing together.

Registration: $15 members, $30 non-members



Future DEI Discussion Group Session
May 15, 2024 — What Does Equitable Engagement Mean for YOUR Nature Center?

If you have questions, please contact ANCA Membership & Programs Coordinator Daniel Auer, at . This CONNECTS program will not be recorded. ANCA Members receive a 50% discount code; if you are a member and don't have the code, please email Daniel at .