The Quileute People of La Push, Washington
100% Rating
(2 Reviews)

The Quileute People of La Push, Washington

GCN has partnered with the Quileute Tribal Council for more than 8 years and today enjoys a unique relationship that is borne out of a shared need to protect indigenous cultures, respect for communities' values and traditions, and sustainable development. GCN has historically worked with this community on projects like building a home for the Self Help Drumming Group, a support group for drug and alcohol recovery, an outdoor amphitheater, gardening and beach cleanup as well as supporting community elders on projects in their homes.

This community with its strongly maintained communal traditions would provide anyone seeking a memorable domestic cross-cultural immersion, an experience of a lifetime. Surrounded by lush forests and sounds of the Olympic National Forest, trip participants would awaken to the sounds of crashing ocean waves in the distance and after work on the projects, close their days with either a salmon bake or bonfire on the beach, or participate in the weekl

Locations
North America » United States of America
Length
1-2 Weeks
2-4 Weeks
Language
English
Housing
Guesthouse
Host Family
Starting Price
$500.00
Currency
USD
Price Details
Program costs include: Airport pick-up and transportation, lodging, meals at site and en-route to and from site, cultural orientation and training, a donation to the community project and project administration. All costs are tax deductible.

Questions & Answers

Program Reviews

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Program Reviews (2)

Default avatar
Brendan
Male
42 years old
Minneapolis MN
Hamline University

Home Away from Home!

10/10

My trip to La Push this last April was the first immersion experience I was embarking on with GCN. I believed so much in the veracity of their assertion that they were providing unique immersion experiences to local communities worldwide and that's partly why I came to work for the organization. But belief and experience are two different things! This was not my first immersion experience given that I was born in a small village in the hinterlands of Cameroon, where vehicles hardly went, and we had neither running water nor electricity! So yes, coming to this country 2006 was the biggest immersion of my life.

We arrived La Push and life slowed down to an unquestionable rhythm that seemed to mimic the Pacific waves that rolled unto the beautiful beaches and the sounds of the winds in the lush forest that surrounded this village. On our very first day we could not but marvel at the beautiful setting sun that hung suspended over the Pacific Ocean as we watched the eagles flying and disappearing into the gleaming light.

The entire week, everywhere we went, we were welcome with open arms and presents. From the tribal craftsman, whom I visited together with the elder of elders, Roger to the visits with James Jamie my friend and warm hospitality of Marie (the smell of indian tacos as we arrived their home......yum!). Mr Wilson, Roger and I talked about the origins of the Quileute, and Roger then sang his family song that could not be recorded or performed by even the other tribes members without the permission of his family. He prayed for the craftsman, his friend and tribal brother and I was invited to sing a song from my own tribe the Nso of the North West Province of Cameroon. In that little circle of friendship and kindred spirit, Mr Wilson, the craftsman, stated that it felt as if we had always known each other; as if there was no beginning to that moment and no end. I felt a peace of self I hadn't felt in a long time. A knowledge that I was back home in my little village Ndzeru, but yet miles away in La Push.

How can I begin to describe the music we made with Roger, who welcomed the entire GCN team to his home and in the true hospitality of the Quileute, gave us tribal musical instruments to practice a song on and then performed both Nso and Quileute Songs with us. What about the opportunity to sing and drum at the sacred circle that holds on Wednesday evenings and Roger performing for the GCN team on his Harmonica - a feat that even some old tribal members had never seen! What about the presents of necklaces, and a symbolic walking stick and medicine bag from the tribe's leading spiritual healer and craftswoman!

The GCN's team learned to listen to the voice within us that bid us to express our experience through art, guided by the tribal craftsman - a process and education in the myths and legends of the Quileute that I'll never forget. The cleaning projects, the trip to the rain forest and the overwhelming feeling of acceptance by the tribes' members are memories that are unforgettable.

I went on a trip that turned into a journey home.

How can this program be improved?

If the tribe would allow for more trips then more trips could be arranged so that more people get a chance to learn about the Quileute and enjoy the chance to come back as fulfilled as myself.

Default avatar
Sue
Female
57 years old
Minneapolis MN
American University

Come home to La Push

10/10

All three times I've been to La Push I was welcomed as family. The impact of drumming circle,listening to stories from elders, renovating much needed housing all contribute to shifting my world view.

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