Julienne Inuvik, Northwest Territories
Northwest Territories Territorial FairProject:
The Gwich'in Comprehensive Land Claim Agreement
My project is on the Gwich'in Comprehensive Land Claim in the Northwest Territories. The land claim is a modern treaty based on Treaty 11 which is a numbered treaty.
What was the most interesting thing you learned about your topic?
The most interesting thing I have learned about my topic is that when I interviewed Fred and Bill, they both said "The Comprehensive Land Claim Agreement gives the Gwich'in (ME) our own voice to speak out." The land claim tells the Aboriginal people and the Canadian Government how to work together to create a better and more positive world for generations to come.
What important lessons have you learned that you want to share with other Canadians?
The important lesson I learned is that everything I know about the Gwich'in Comprehensive Land Claim Agreement comes from the Elders I interviewed and the two reference books used to research my project. Our Elders pass down traditions and they keep our name as Gwich'in, they pass down our culture so we won't die. The youth will keep the traditions going. Even though I ran into some roadblocks I always found a way to get through it and found a solution for the roadblocks in my video with my mom.
How would you compare your life today to the lives of those studied in your project?
I would compare my life as more modern than my great grandparents. My great grandparents lived off the land. Back then, they had a numbered treaty. Now we have a land claim which is constitutionally protected. Without the treaty there would be no land claim.