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6th Annual Elder~Youth Conference

R.E.D. Elder~Youth Conference, now joined with Grandma Aggie's Salmon Gathering!
June 15-18, 2011
New location~Kanaka Flats (click below tipi photo on "read more" for other details).

Exciting news regarding new location and camp structure this year. . .we will be collaborating with Grandma Aggie's Salmon Gathering, hosting the Elder~Youth camp near the river where she has the Salmon Ceremony. Grandma has been asking for a culture camp to precede her Salmon Ceremony, and knowing that we host our Elder~Youth Conference at about the same time each year, we all decided to join camps and put our energies (and prayers!) together to create this logical and natural collaboration.

Our Elder~Youth Conference will feature the same structure we provide each year--of elders teaching youth in camp through experiential, hands-on projects during these four days, culminating on the last day with Grandma Aggie's Salmon Ceremony on Saturday, June 18.

Red Earth Descendants invites Native and inter-tribal youth, elders and families to attend our 6th annual Elder~Youth Conference Camp Gathering. In the ways of Native traditions, we gather and ask our elders to lead, teach us and help us remember the timeless traditions that once held all nations together. We come together in peace and in a respectful way for learning, for spiritual cleansing and for prayer. From our hearts, we respect those who came before us. We call on the keepers of our traditions and we honor the generations to come. We invite you to join us for 4 days of tribal living in the traditions of the circle of life; we return back to the ways of our Mother Earth and prepare ourselves spiritually for the changing times.

Over the next few months, as we make the plans, we'll keep you all posted on the line-up and a loose schedule. It will include (but not be limited to!) to following teachings:

~survival skills
~plant and medicinal herb identifying
~forest ecology
~river/salmon restoration
~acorn gathering and processing
~oak savanna ecology and restoration
~understanding the sacred uses of fire
~collecting wild edibles
~traditional ways of cooking
~canoe-making and launching in Applegate Lake
~canoe traditions
~weaponry and understanding the role of hunting
~traditional crafting
~shinny (stickball gaming)
~living respectfully with our Mother Earth
~singing and sharing with our relations
~learning how to set up and take down a camp
~learning to live with others' cultures and respecting their ways
~listening to our elders' wisdom

To get to Kanaka Flats, go through Jacksonville, take Hwy 238 (Provolt Hwy) about 7 miles to Ruch, turn left on Upper Applegate Road, go almost 17 miles towards the Applegate Dam, turn right at Kanaka Flats. We will also have it marked where to turn. If you go to the Dam, you've gone too far--the little turn into Kanaka Flats is RIGHT BEFORE the Dam.

The camp for Elder~Youth AND the Salmon Gathering will be in the same place--Kanaka Flats. Camp sites free and available to all. There is no running water, so we will haul in water for camp.

Unlike many expensive summer camps for children, our Elder~Youth Conference is free of charge to participating families. We offer this camp as a gift to our community, in the potlatch way of sharing knowledge and traditions to future generations, and in the way of honoring what our elders need to teach to us. We do not believe in charging money for this experience, thus making it impossible for underprivileged kids to attend, so Red Earth Descendants takes on the expense by grassroots fund-raising and grant-writing. It is a privilege to serve our community this way.