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Grow strong like a cedar.

This past weekend, I had the chance to sit and visit with my friend, George Harris Jr. of Stz’uminus First Nation. Last week, George’s Nation was hit by a freak snowstorm that broke branches and severed power lines, imposing a seventeen-hour power outage on the community. Following the event, George’s wife, Becca, made the comment that “the maples are growing like weeds.” George shared that her sentence echoed in his thoughts for days and inspired him to reflect on the work we are doing through Culturally Committed as our community begins to grow. George shared:

“Becca’s words really got me thinking - maple trees grow up really fast. It can be exciting to witness their rapid growth and their showy colors, but when the branches of the tree have any weight bearing on them, they cannot stand the strain. The limbs collapse, sometimes causing collateral damage to everything around them. I was thinking about this in relation to Culturally Committed. We need not grow quickly like a maple. We should instead work to grow like a cedar. Cedars appear to grow slowly, but during their growth, they reach powerful roots down into the earth, firmly anchoring the tree from blowing winds. The trunk grows steadily, gaining circumference and strength. The powerful branches stretch out, easily capable of withstanding heavy snowfall, and directing accumulation down and away from its branches. The cedar is strong and certain. It is the tree of life. We need to grow like a cedar.”

Since announcing that Culturally Committed is embarking on organizational memberships, we have been navigating how to respond to the interest. Our work has been a grassroots effort, with our treasured mentors carefully exploring their capacity and thoughtfully growing their mentorship commitments. It has always been our priority to do this work in a good way, and that means ensuring that mentors have the time and space to grow in their roles and feel comfortable that they are not carrying a burdensome load. George’s words reminded me that it is okay to take our time and grow carefully. We appreciate the patience shown to us as we design and build our Dedicated Learning Circles, and we hope participants continue to feel the "uy sqwalawun" (good feelings) we are putting into this work. If you are interested in learning more about our organizational memberships, just reach out to and I'd be happy to share in a conversation with you.

In learning,

Kim at Culturally Committed

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