Gwich’in Women Speak

On July 1, 2010

Mother, daughter, sister, elder, youth, activist, leader, writer, artist, teacher, student, scientist, former tribal chief and politician, and more from Alaska and Canada

Interviewed: July 2010

The 2010 Gwich’in gathering was held in Fort Yukon, Alaska. The theme was “Unity Through Our Cultural/Traditional Values For Our Sovereign Success.” In 1988, the Gwich’in elders called a gathering to discuss the threat of oil and gas development in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The tradition was brought back for the first time in 100 years in an attempt to unite the whole nation. The words from the elders were: “Do it in a good way and no compromise. Stay united.”

Since 1988, the nation has been gathering every two years. I had an opportunity to interview Gwich’in women from different ages and backgrounds at the gathering. The Sacred Place Where Life Begins | Gwich’in Women Speak is a short documentary that summarizes voices of Gwich’in women who are speaking out for their rights to protect the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The 20-minute short documentary was published in November, 2013. The film received the Audience Choice Award at the 2014 Earth Port Film Festival and was nominated as Best Documentary Short at the 2013 American Indian Film Festival.

Go to the documentary website

Take action!

Go through our Take Action Checklist and see how you can make a difference in protecting the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and the Gwich’in way of life.

Read my blog of 27 Gwich’in women’s interview summary

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