qχeləc, nə́c̓əmat θəɬ kʷθə šxʷqʷeləwən
Many Voices, One Mind
Traditional Name: Xoyetlha (hi-claw)
Birth Place: Mission, BC.
Indigenous Community: Sts'ailes
Family: Married with 2 living children, 2 children who are no longer with us, and 7 grandchildren
Memorable Childhood Experience: "My dad always told me I had a gift. I would sit down and draw. I would draw things. When I went to Agassiz high school (had to transfer from community school), during art time, the art teacher was amazed by my drawing. That was my most keen subject in school. By the time I got to grade 10, my art teacher decided to give me a scholarship to go to the Pentiction art school during the summer. My family dropped me off there. I had to sleep in a dorm; we had our own spaces. It was like going to school. We would get up in the morning and go down to the school. I was alone, so far away from home, and my parents were so proud. They would pack up my siblings to come visit every weekend. The hardest part was Sunday when they left. "
Hobbies: "I crochet, bead, do Salish weaving, inner cedar bark work, traditional medicines, sew (hand and machine), make traditional foods, and draw."
Words of Wisdom:
"You always have to carry yourself in a good way. In class, I expect the students to be alert and that they are there are learn."
"Take pride in your culture."
"The late Chief Dan George sang the song of our people to teach how to earn your feather. Education is a ladder. When you come to school, you can’t go straight to the top. Each step, we are teaching you. There are three rungs: We teach, We learn, We grow (to earn your feather). Build yourself another ladder to get the education for the job you want”.
“Who do you think is our future generation? You!”