In the summer of 2022, the North Coast of British Columbia was the site of a much needed and long-anticipated gathering, as the rivers of the region were once again teeming with sockeye salmon. Meanwhile, Ecotrust Canada was also returning to rural, remote, and Indigenous communities where we gathered with our partners and once again worked side by side to build an economy that provides for life.
This was also a year that our organization was able to come together in person to plan, strategize, learn, and celebrate. And indeed, there has been much to celebrate. A quick look at our accomplishments in 2022 includes,
- Our partnering with the Metlakatla First Nation in launching a Regenerative Ocean Farm that provides sustainable livelihoods, food security, and new entrepreneurial opportunities for the Metlakatla people and surrounding communities.
- Undertaking technical training and certification for local community members as energy advisors and heat pump technicians, helping them step into new futures in the green energy sector.
- The launching of the Indigenous Housing and Homelands Toolkit, which supports First Nations in meeting their housing needs in ways that are culturally appropriate and meaningful to their communities.
- Authoring the First Nations Carbon discussion paper with the BC Assembly of First Nations. The report, published online, provides First Nations with insights on their rights with respect to carbon, and how carbon finance can work for them and the planet.
- In response to the record-breaking sockeye salmon return on the Skeena River, our North Coast fisheries team worked around the clock in three different sockeye fisheries, supporting nearly 50 fishing vessels from July to August. The effort was essential to meeting the data-collection needs of our local commercial and Indigenous fisheries partners, as well as the federal government.
- As part of our strategic planning process, we developed Ecotrust Canada’s Reconciliation Framework, which articulates the structural, policy, and everyday changes that we will make at our organization to advance Indigenous Reconciliation.
These and many more achievements are further described in this annual report. Additionally, this year, we have added appendices that describe our progress towards meeting programmatic objectives and goals. In the coming years, watch for continued improvements in how we develop our approach to impact evaluation.
I wish it was safe to say that last summer’s sockeye runs on the North Coast were a “new normal,” or that the abundance was shared evenly across Canada. Unfortunately, this is not the case, and such events are increasingly the exception, not the rule. Nonetheless, we are grateful for where and when these great gatherings take place. They also highlight the imperative that we work even harder to cultivate the conditions by which nature and people can come together to create a more abundant, diverse, and equitable future.