Introduction and Literature Review

5 Community Supports & Transmission of Knowledge

Stevie D. Jonathan

The majority of our research identified community support programs promoting the consumption of traditional foods, in order to promote health and well-being, in addition to efforts to increase food security. Some of these community support programs include local farmers’ markets, planting and harvesting traditional foods communally, identifying plants and medicines, classes on composting food waste, workshops on vermicomposting, canning and preserving food workshops, community gardens, Good Food Box programs, cooking demonstrations, and traditional activities and sports (Delormier & Marquis, 2019; Gordon et al., 2018). Participants of these community support programs not only benefit physically, but also experience deepened emotional and spiritual well-being and a stronger connection to their Haudenosaunee identity (Gordon et al., 2018). While all community supports had educational aims, some projects were more direct in their endeavors to transmit traditional knowledge, such as the creation of the Haudenosaunee Food Guide by Rick Hill and Chandra Maracle of Six Nations (Gordon et al., 2018). Another example is First Nations Technical Institute’s Bachelor of Arts and Science Indigenous Sustainable Food Systems, currently under development. This curriculum draws on traditional knowledge of food systems found within the Great Law of Peace and the Code of Handsome Lake (Williams & Brant, 2019). Research states the need for transmission of traditional knowledge and cultural practices in order to increase capacity for cultivating traditional foods and food sovereignty. This is achieved through community supports and education and contributes to the overall regeneration of our food systems.

Currently, there is a gap in Indigenous foods and food sovereignty literature specific to Six Nations of the Grand River. As stated earlier, local knowledge is integral to sustainable self-determination. Accordingly, our research aims to close this gap while responding to the call to action to transmit knowledge.


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Exploring Indigenous Foods & Food Sovereignty Copyright © by Stevie D. Jonathan is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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