In September 2022, members of the Redwood CORE Hub joined key community and philanthropic partners for a three day tour of the Pacific Redwoods Region to learn about the ecology, history, climate, and resilience of the area. The following is a recap of some of the highlights from the tour.
Crescent City, CA
Over the last 10 years, The California Endowment has worked in close partnership with the Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation through its Building Healthy Communities initiative. We heard from Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation Tribal leaders about innovative ways the Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation is working towards centering community needs when looking at housing development and building community resilience.
A majority of the Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation territory is in Oregon, with many folks moving to the area due to facing displacement from increasing fires. We had the opportunity to visit the Dat-naa-svt Village Project, named after the beach that the village overlooks. Land sovereignty makes it easier for these types of programs to exist, as well as the restoration projects and climate resilient housing that the Nation has invested in.
In addition to addressing housing infrastructure needs, the Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation has focused on education and meeting the needs of the next generation of climate scientists and land stewards. The Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation recently received a grant from the U.S. Fisheries and Wildlife Service to survey important fish in the area through the perspective of traditional ecological knowledge and western science. Additionally, the Tribe has partnered with Scripps Institution of Oceanography studies, which includes creating 3D models of marine life and studying the effects of sea level rise on key species, including smelt. The Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation has hosted a summer youth program for the past 10 years, where students participated in land mapping, stroking excitement in students around land stewardship and natural resources. Additional support of young people is encouraged through the development of an education department over the past 3 years alongside partnerships with the College of the Redwoods, Yurok Tribe, and many others. These kinds of partnerships allow for the continued conversations regarding the support that community members can provide young folks.