Project: Haida Regalia Making
Grantee: Hydaburg City School District
Written by: Priscilla Goulding
Our project was making Haida regalia in the Hydaburg School (Hydaburg City School District) in grades K-12 as well as the Kasaan School, (part of Southeast Island School District). Years ago, seniors would make regalia to wear at their graduation ceremonies in Hydaburg, and at a parent meeting some expressed the desire to rekindle this activity. This provided the spark for the grant proposal. The project was not limited to button blankets, the signature piece of regalia for the Haida people, but included headbands, tunics and deer skin aprons for the younger children.
At the end of the 2015-2016 school year, one parent remarked that it was terrific to have the school procure this grant to purchase all the materials. Many families in Hydaburg would not be able to afford the materials needed to make the traditional regalia.
Intergenerational bonds were strengthened both in Hydaburg and in Kasaan. In Hydaburg, the culmination of the project was Haida Day, where the students wore their regalia and performed traditional Haida dances and songs. There was an excellent community turnout for this event and this year-long activity affirmed the community’s support for similar projects at the school.
The following photos show a few of the projects from Hydaburg School. There were two artist/teachers for the grant, Gerry Peele and Yvette Adams. Students did the sewing with the help of their parents and school paraprofessionals.