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Relearning, reconnection, reconciliation: Mi’kmaq tourism operators are offering authentic experiences to visitors and to their own communities – The Star

by ahnationtalk on August 19, 2022155 Views

“In this reconciliation process that Canada is undergoing, it’s incumbent upon us to teach people who want to learn,” says Cecelia Brooks.

Aug. 19, 2022

On a guided medicine walk through the new Wabanaki Healing Garden at the Fredericton Botanic Garden, Cecelia Brooks points out three varieties of plantain, a plant used in traditional medicine for treating cuts and bites. One is native to North America; the others arrived with Europeans.

“They called it ‘white man’s footprints’ because wherever settlers would walk, we’d find plantain,” says Brooks. She and her son, Anthony Brooks, founded Wabanaki Tree Spirit Tours & Events in 2019. They’ve been working on this garden for three years. In June, they hosted its official opening.

When I ask how plants introduced to North America by settlers can be considered traditional, she replies, “Many plants that come from Europe became incorporated into our pharmacopoeia. We’ve been here since the time of the glaciers. Adaptation is inherent to who we are.”

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