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Kwai Nidôbak! Hello Friends!
I am a member of Nulhegan Band of the Coosuk Abenaki Nation and a member of the Abenaki Artists Association as a Black Ash and sweetgrass basketmaker. I was invited by a member of the Vermont Land Trust and of the Vermont State Urban and Community Forestry Program to speak about the importance of the Black Ash trees for the Abenaki people in a webinar last May. Since then we have convened to begin dialogues about the challenges and possible opportunities related to the Emerald Ash Borer and Black Ash trees.
We will need a community across the state to be able to develop strategies to help save the ash trees from the EAB and to have a means to harvest and process into splints those trees that can’t be saved. I want to do all that is possible so that future generations have access to Black Ash for basket making and to understand the importance of Black Ash for our Abenaki community.
It is important to keep all interested groups apprised of the discussions to date and invite any who are interested in joining us to please do so! I cannot do this by myself. Would you please share this with your community and if there are people interested in participating at any level, please have them contact me by clicking the link below.
IF there are areas you feel we need to address/be aware of, please let me know. It is very important to me that we have processes in place that will create equitable distribution for the whole Abenaki community.
Kerry Wood/Kalli Abazi
The emerald ash borer is now in Vermont and all ash trees are at risk. The Black Ash tree has significant cultural value for the Abenaki people. The Ash trees are integral to the environmental habitat in Vermont and critical for some areas related to ecological stability.
How do we preserve black ash so there are still some growing for grandchildren. If an ash tree needs to be harvested, how can we make sure it is appropriate for basketmaking. Need access to materials to be equal for all. It will take a community to preserve healthy trees for future generations. Stockpiling and meaningful distribution of splints is very important.
I am looking for tribal citizens who might want to be involved with the following few areas:
I feel that Nulhegan has moved into a new phase of being and no one person or council can do everything. We need to collectively come together as citizens in areas you feel that you can contribute and consistently commit too.
Wliwni (thank you)
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