The board of directors and staff at Elderberry Wisdom Farm acknowledge that for thousands of years, the Native ancestors of the land and our own ancestors continue to watch over us and our sacred landscapes. They inhabited and cared for these lands with great love, wisdom and attention. Living on the land for millennia is the wellspring of an extensive body of knowledge, values, beliefs and practices that many refer to as traditional ecological knowledge (TEK), or traditional knowledges (TKs).
This knowledge, passed down orally, through personal experience, and spiritual teachings, continues to be the foundation of our cultural identity and survival. It is increasingly relevant today. We draw upon its strength from being practiced and continuously evolved so that new knowledge is integrated into the ancient practices. Native Americans carry this understanding in our hearts as a trust for future generations with the understanding that it is of benefit to all of us and all of our human family. The best way to ensure its survival is to continue to use it and share it.
We live and work in the Willamette Valley, the traditional homelands of multiple bands of Kalapuya. We acknowledge that all of the land and water of our region on which we practice restoration is their ancestral home. Following the Willamette Valley Treaty of 1855, they were forcibly removed to Western Oregon reservations, which served more like prison camps than villages. Today, living descendants of these people are a part of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde Community of Oregon and the Confederated Tribes of the Siletz Indians. As we strive long-term to help conserve and protect our natural resources from emerging climate issues and other challenges, we acknowledge how much we need the wisdom and traditions of these peoples and their ancestors.