Resilient Peoples & Place: An Aspiration for Southeast Alaska in 2022

The following aspiration for our region was created collaboratively by over 20 Southeast Alaskans from Yakutat to Prince of Wales:

Yakutat Dance Group proves that a global pandemic can’t keep communities from honoring their culture. (Courtesy Photo / Violet Sensmeier)

Yakutat Dance Group proves that a global pandemic can’t keep communities from honoring their culture. (Courtesy Photo / Violet Sensmeier)

In 2022, may we adopt sound treatments for COVID and heal fractures in our communities, selves, and economies.

The community of Hoonah is exploring how to respectfully share Tlingit culture with visitors. ( Courtesy Photo / Kerry Tasker, Visit Southeast)

The community of Hoonah is exploring how to respectfully share Tlingit culture with visitors. ( Courtesy Photo / Kerry Tasker, Visit Southeast)

May we be leaders in truly ‘Regenerative’ Tourism and support development that serves both the people of Southeast, and the planet that sustains us.

In 2022 may we honor our connections to each other and our environment through compassion and care.

May we pause in gratitude for the people and places responsible for the foods that nourish us.

In 2022 may we plant seeds with faith that they will grow into healthy vibrant beings that too can nourish the world.

Yakutat Surf Club gives youth the opportunity to challenge themselves physically and mentally in Yakutat’s cold crashing waters. (Courtesy Photo / Bethany Goodrich)

Yakutat Surf Club gives youth the opportunity to challenge themselves physically and mentally in Yakutat’s cold crashing waters. (Courtesy Photo / Bethany Goodrich)

May we become students and seek teachers that challenge us. May we move out of our comfort zones. May we be brave.

In 2022 may honesty and humility guide our interactions with one another, with our communities, and with the lands and waters we are privileged to call home.

May we live up to the individual and collective promises we make and be accountable to one another.

Cold ocean dipping has supported resilience and mental strength building on these shores for over ten thousand years. On Prince of Wales Island two friends take a soak. (Courtesy Photo / Bethany Goodrich)

Cold ocean dipping has supported resilience and mental strength building on these shores for over ten thousand years. On Prince of Wales Island two friends take a soak. (Courtesy Photo / Bethany Goodrich)

May we cultivate strength, healing, and hope in ourselves and others through our intentions and our actions.

May we honor our relationships with the land and the people of the land and learn from the Aas Kwaani (the Tree People) who explain: “We need to stand together, support each other with our roots, and hold each other up.”

In 2022, may we continue putting action behind the fact that public lands are Native lands and understand that the land and water cares for us when we listen through our ancestors.

The verdant understory of the Tongass National Forest provides inspiration and spiritual respite to many Southeast Alaskans. (Courtesy Photo / Ryan Morse)

The verdant understory of the Tongass National Forest provides inspiration and spiritual respite to many Southeast Alaskans. (Courtesy Photo / Ryan Morse)

May we find serenity in our surroundings, peace from this place, and appreciate the verdant evergreen nature of our forests.

May we take time to notice the rotation of our planet, witness the rhythms of the Tongass, and cherish something special with every season.

May we make space for rest and restoration in 2022. (Courtesy Photo / Bethany Goodrich)

May we make space for rest and restoration in 2022. (Courtesy Photo / Bethany Goodrich)

May we give ourselves grace for all that is beyond our control, and allow ourselves and others to rest when needed.

May we live authentically and affirm others in doing the same.

In 2022, may we prioritize gratitude and abundance over anxiety and scarcity.

The community of Hoonah from above. Southeast Alaskans find strength and peace in the natural world that surrounds each remote community. (Courtesy Photo /Kerry Tasker for Visit Southeast)

The community of Hoonah from above. Southeast Alaskans find strength and peace in the natural world that surrounds each remote community. (Courtesy Photo /Kerry Tasker for Visit Southeast)

May we heal as communities and individuals, be easy on ourselves and have the courage to explore both the world around us, and the world within us.

The Hydaburg Carving Shed is a community space for healing. Sgwaayaans (TJ) Young aligns head, heart, and hands during carving.(Courtesy Photo /Ash Adams for Visit Southeast)

The Hydaburg Carving Shed is a community space for healing. Sgwaayaans (TJ) Young aligns head, heart, and hands during carving.(Courtesy Photo /Ash Adams for Visit Southeast)

In 2022, may our actions always reflect integrity through the work of our hands, the kindness of our hearts, and the application of our minds.

The Sitka Spruce Tips 4-H program plants trees in Sitka during a reforestation project. (Courtesy Photo / Lione Clare)

The Sitka Spruce Tips 4-H program plants trees in Sitka during a reforestation project. (Courtesy Photo / Lione Clare)

In 2022, may we leave political divisions behind and work together for the benefit of our communities, our natural environment and the resources it provides us. May we build a proud future for our children to inherit

May we build bridges and relationships, practice tolerance and understanding with those who differ from us.

In 2022, may we deescalate and depolarize, find and grow common ground, and forge a stable foundation from which our communities can thrive upon.

The Alaska Youth Stewards Program in Hoonah processed wild foods, like jam, to share with community elders in need. (Courtesy Photo / Hoonah Indian Association)

The Alaska Youth Stewards Program in Hoonah processed wild foods, like jam, to share with community elders in need. (Courtesy Photo / Hoonah Indian Association)

May we share our abundance with others that have less.

May we feel joy: fearlessly and unapologetically.

May we dream wildly, vividly, and collectively.

Joy and love are on full display during a sunset on one of Yakutat’s iconic beaches. (Courtesy Photo / Violet Sensmeir)

Joy and love are on full display during a sunset on one of Yakutat’s iconic beaches. (Courtesy Photo / Violet Sensmeir)

In 2022, may we prioritize community over self and exert love with all our might.

The Sustainable Southeast Partnership is a dynamic collective uniting diverse skills and perspectives to strengthen cultural, ecological, and economic resilience across Southeast Alaska. It envisions self-determined and connected communities where Southeast Indigenous values continue to inspire society, shape our relationships, and ensure that each generation thrives on healthy lands and waters. SSP shares stories that inspire and better connect our unique, isolated communities. Resilient Peoples & Place appears monthly in the Capital City Weekly. SSP can also be found online at sustainablesoutheast.net.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *