The process behind Sila and the Land is an important part of the story. Three young Indigenous women came together to write a children’s book that could help share perspectives on the land common across First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities. This includes a shared respect for the earth and an understanding of our responsibilities to protect it for future generations.
In order to convey these perspectives in the story, the authors spoke with youth from a number of Indigenous communities across Canada. They asked about why the environment was important to each of them and what land based teachings and experiences were significant to their identities and cultures. Their responses helped shape the book, offering examples of things Sila could learn from the land during her journey travelling across the North, East, South and West.
It is important to note that while there are shared perspectives across Indigenous communities there are also many differences. This book does not claim to represent any specific cultures or teachings, but instead encourages children and youth to seek out knowledge from the territories that they are living on. It also aims to inspire other young Indigenous writers and illustrators to believe in their gifts and the power of their stories.
***This book provides recommendations for readers to learn more and how to take action.
Written by Shelby Angalik, Ariana Roundpoint and Lindsay DuPre. Illustrated by Halie Finney. Designed by Janet Hannah. Created as part of Climate Action 150 with support from TakingITGlobal and GreenLearning Canada, and financial support from Environment and Climate Change Canada and the Catherine Donnelly Foundation. A portion of the proceeds of the book will go toward the Native Youth Sexual Health Network and their work bringing attention to the impacts of environmental violence on Indigenous health, rights and justice.