Our core services are centered on farmer education and mentorship. Seed revitalization programs are entirely different from commercial operations that create new hybrids for confetti value. Long before the regenerative agriculture movement started preaching the value of seed saving, the practice was a crucial part of growing food and environmental stewardship for Indigenous peoples. Some of these seeds have been, missing from our communities for centuries, carried on long journeys in smoky, buckskin pouches, on the necks of peoples who were forced to relocate from the. rematriation can also encompass the reclaiming of ancestral remains, spirituality, culture, knowledge, and resources. coming back home to communities of origin, from the vaults of public institutions, seed banks, universities, seed keeper collections, and some lying on dusty pantry. Many Indigenous seed keepers have been faced with the decision to gift seed for food at the risk of losing an ancestral variety. When North America was colonised, the relationship of indigenous people with food was also colonised. As a national network, we leverage resources and cultivate solidarity and communication within the matrix of regional grass-roots tribal seed sovereignty projects. The Indigenous Seed Keepers Network (ISKN) is partnering with USC Canada to steward this project. This process often entails policy documents and negotiations, but also spiritual and emotional work—developing new ceremonies and protocols to welcome home these relatives, as well as acknowledging the elders who have worked for so long to make this movement possible. While the educational spaces that we cultivate at Sierra Seeds invite in people of diverse backgrounds, I have channeled some of the work that I have developed into a legacy initative called “Indigenous Seedkeepers Network.”  In 2016, I approached Native American Food Sovereignty Alliance with an invitation for a collaborative endeavor that would ensure a common legacy for the seed sovereignty work that many of us indigenous seedkeepers here in North America were embarking upon. The mentorship will offer tools and a framework for Native communities to increase seed/food security through asset mapping and facilitated strategic project mapping. These laws limited our ability to sell our crops to non-Indians living in Manitoba. In the age of the increasing industrialization of our food and the erosion of biodiversity within cultural contexts, the Indigenous Seed Keeper Network asks the questions that assists communities of diverse cultures and backgrounds; Can we envision the Seed Commons, and coordinate collaborative efforts to care and protect for our seeds that is in right relationship to a diverse understanding of cultural values and cosmology? We have organized and hosted numerous Indigenous Seed Keeper trainings, including a large Indigenous Seed Keeper Summit in May of 2014, where we had over 30 participants from many tribal communities all over the country, including Dakota, Lakota, Anishinaabe, Oneida, and Chippewa and Umatilla nations. The Indigenous concept of. the seeds over the generations is ultimately within the women’s realm. Circle members are increasing Indigenous seed supply with the aim of creating a regional, collectively-governed seed hub. It simply means back to Mother Earth, a return to our origins, to life and cocreation, honoring the life-giving force of the Divine Feminine. Photo by Adobe Stock/FerrizFrames. Through the Indigenous Seed Mentorship Initiative, we will assist in the reclamation of a critical aspect of indigenous culture by helping communities to revitalize traditional seeds and food. These gatherings and workshops are a story of healing through many generations. Members of the Indigenous Seed Keepers Network explain the cultural importance of access to traditional seed varieties. We design, facilitate and implement Seed Stewardship Mentorship training that is culturally appropriate.
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