Welcome to our swiya

Presenter: hiwus (Calvin Craigan)

About this Event

Recent events have forced all of us to face the fact that reconciliation with Indigenous Canadians is necessary. Education and personal connections are an obvious way to help achieve reconciliation. "Welcome to our swiya" provides our community an opportunity to learn about our shíshálh Nation neighbours, their history, struggles and aspirations in a uniquely Indigenous way.

hiwus, known as Calvin Craigan to many of us, is a shíshálh elder, oral knowledge keeper, a hereditary chief of the shíshálh Nation and the youngest Indigenous chief ever elected in Canada. hiwus will tell us the story of the shíshálh people in four storytelling sessions in the shíshálh Nation Longhouse.

  • "In the Beginning" will explain the history of the shíshálh people before contact with Europeans. It will include the history of hiwus' family, his family lineage, the history of the shíshálh people, culture, language, and way of successfully governing and sustaining themselves.
  • "Interference and Interruption" will describe how, over many decades, settler culture and ways of governing interrupted and interfered with the shíshálh people in very damaging ways.
  • "Struggle for Independence" will describe the efforts of the shíshálh people for independence leading to becoming the first Indigenous Nation in Canada to achieve self governance.
  • "Vision for the Future" will describe the aspirations of the shíshálh people to live and work together with the settler community in ways that will benefit everyone.

Preparing for the Event

Prior to the first session, please watch the introductory video below.

Film made by Digi Majou aka Joah Lui.
Produced by Deer Crossing the Art Farm.
Funding from Canada Council of the Arts and BC Arts Council.


Presenter: hiwus (Calvin Craigan)

Date Saturday and Sunday afternoons,
Sept 10 / 11 and Sept 24 /25, 2022

Times: 2:00 to 4:00 pm

Venue: shíshálh First Nation Longhouse
(Note: that the Longhouse seating is hard, and you may wish to bring a cushion.)

Cost: Free

Open to Everyone - All Ages Welcome

Donations will be gratefully accepted at the final session.  Funds collected will be used to defray direct costs, with all remaining funds donated to a charity chosen by "syiyaya Reconciliation Movement".

EdlerCollege wishes to thank the shíshálh Nation for inviting the community to their Longhouse to listen and learn.