ME’DIL is the Hoopa word for boat, that is, the redwood dug-out canoe traditionally used by northwest California tribes for cultural and ceremonial purposes. The name is also an acronym that sets forth the mission of the organization: Maintaining, Enhancing, Defending Indigenous Living.
The Me’dil Institute is a nonprofit corporation chartered by the Hoopa Valley Tribe. We operate to support traditional cultural activities of California tribes as a means of sustaining Indian identity and improving community health through a broad cross-section of indigenous cultural revitalization initiatives, including:
- For the Children. Research and writing relating to traditional world view and values, indigenous identity issues and trends in tribal membership.
- Community Sharing Gatherings. Grass-roots, low or no budget gatherings which bring practitioners of traditional arts or community health together to share knowledge and experience with the community.
- Living Traditions. Practicing traditional arts and transmitting traditional knowledge.
- Making Our Presence Known. Advocacy and Public education presentations.
Our activities are values based and thus relevant to all of Indian Country, however, our efforts focus on traditional practices of tribes in California. We focus on documenting and transmitting traditional knowledge that promotes continuation of the land based cultural practices that reinforce balanced, harmonious and respectful life ways.