top of page

Principles for How We Work With Indigenous Peoples

As a non-Indigenous organization, we check our position of power and privilege in our relationships with Indigenous partners and in our advocacy work, as funders, and as influencers of funders and governments.


As Individuals:

  1. We are

  2. Proactively seeking opportunities to learn and unlearn on a personal level


As Partners:

  1. We listen to partner Nation’s needs and take actions wherever we can to respond to the areas of support they identify and request.

  2. We do not speak on behalf of Nations, but lift up partner Nation’s voices and support Indigenous priorities or calls to action for change in Crown systems, laws and governance.

  3. Our communications work is guided and informed by the relationships we have with Indigenous partners and we lift up generative approaches and storytelling. These stories share the powerful journeys of Indigenous partners towards meeting collaborative goals for watersheds and the benefits for the people and nature that live in those watersheds.

  4. We acknowledge and pay attention to the expectations put on Nations and leaders to participate in certain ways.


As Advocate and Ally:

  1. We help to build broad understanding of the benefits of Indigenous leadership and governance for all communities (Indigenous and non-Indigenous) in their watersheds and we take care to create space for common ground based on shared values for watersheds.

  2. We actively engage in conversation with non-Indigenous people in BC to listen and learn about the best bridges and pathways for non-Indigenous people to understand, recognize and support Indigenous ways of knowing, governance systems and stewardship.


As Funder:

  1. We practice trust-based philanthropy. Once we’ve formed a partnership based on aligned interests and goals for watershed governance, we step back and trust our partners to determine the best path for the work. We do not inject our own ideas or approaches for how the work should be done.

  2. We take care to ensure our application, reporting and administrative processes do not create or perpetuate colonial structures and unnecessary administrative burden, and instead support and strengthen partnership.

  3. [Something about how we work with/influence other funders]


As an Influencer of Crown Governments

  1. Support the advancement of UNDRIP and continue to evaluate its progress openly and transparently with the Crown government and partner Nations

  2. Actively champion that water is essential to Aboriginal title lands, integral to Indigenous territories, and a conduit for health and well-being for Indigenous communities.

  3. TM: Exercise caution in speaking to government on Indigenous rights and governance. Amplify voices, but still including Indigenous peoples where available to speak on their own behalf.

These principles and guideposts are embedded in the DNA of our organization and all of the work that we do. [Emphasize importance of learning and unlearning]

bottom of page