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Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians Annual Jiimaan Journey

Program Type: Local Effort - Programs and/or activities that have not been evaluated but are identified by local programs as producing positive results.

The Annual Jiimaan Journey is a renewal of an old Odawa tradition. Our ancestors would load up their jiimaanuk, or canoes, with trade goods and travel up the Inland Waterway and out to the Great Lakes where they would travel around and trade for other goods necessary to survive. Since 2008 we have taken our youth ages 12 to 18 on a 45 mile journey over 5 days along this ancient route. We travel from Little Traverse Bay on the shores of Lake Michigan along a chain of lakes out to Lake Huron on Michigans east coast, camping as we go. Along the way they listen to stories of local sites, such as where old villages were and what families lived there to where there are battle sites or graveyards, take part in traditional crafts and games and learn about healthier habits. They also draw together and learn to work as a team, and learn that they are capable of much more than they think they are, giving them increased self respect and feelings of accomplishment. The LTBB Community Health Department partners with the tribal Youth Services department as well as the Language/Cultural Preservation department, the Elders department, the Substance Abuse Department, the Natural Resoources Department and community volunteers to create a stimulating and unforgettable event. Typically we average around 20 to 28 youth each year.

Age Group(s):

Site Type(s):
Other: Camping trip

Health Indicator(s):
Health Education , Nutrition , Physical Activity , Traditional Healing

Service Area:

Behavioral health/behavioral change, Health promotion and wellness, Physical activity

URL: n/a

Name: Regina Brubacker-Carver
Site or Location Name: Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians Health Department
7500 Odawa Circle
Harbor Springs, MI 49740
Phone: 231 242-1664