Wisdom of the Elders has just launched its campaign for the next films and radio programs in a series documenting environmental and climate changes from the perspective of tribal nations and Native elders.
This time the Wisdom film crew will take viewers to the coastal tribal nations in Oregon, who face threats such as sea level rise, ocean acidification, flooding and erosion, as well as to cities where Native residents are experiencing changes such as the urban heat island effect.
Previously, Wisdom took viewers and listeners to Alaska, where Native peoples have experienced a broad range of unprecedented climate issues for more than 50 years. Wisdom’s film crew traveled to Alaska over several years to record Native elders, cultural leaders and scientists.
One resulting documentary short, Climate and Native Wisdom: The People of the Caribou, features executive producer Rose High Bear’s Alaska Athabascan peoples and their response to environmental and climate issues. The second film, Climate and Native Wisdom: The People of the Whale features the Inupiaq.
IndieFEST Film Awards recognized the Athabascan film with an Award of Merit, and the Inupiaq film with an Award of Excellence. The Wisdom of the Elders Radio Programs are distributed through Koahnic Broadcasting’s Native Voice One to 53 Indian radio stations around the country.
Wisdom formed the Native Climate Council in early 2015 to discuss what climate issues are of concern to Native communities in Oregon. The council meets in the Portland area, and a teleconference line connects the group around the state. They will continue one-on-one contact with tribal nations through year’s end, requesting that tribal leaders in Oregon and Native community members share names of individuals they suggest be filmed for the series.
The National Endowment for the Arts is providing partial funding to produce two climate documentary films featuring the Native communities in Oregon. Wisdom is Star Storming (crowd funding) matching funds in a campaign launched November 24 on Generosity, an arm of the Indigogo fund-raising site.
They are asking colleagues and readers to forward their message and updates, found on their website, Wisdom of the Elders, to their own networks as they raise funds to complete production in 2016. Campaign coordinator Nico Wind has gifts for those who pass the word along to their colleagues and make a donation.
If you’d like to be a Star Stormer, contact Nico Wind at Wisdom of the Elders.
ICTMN contributor Terri Hansen is on the board of Wisdom of the Elders.