An ancient and sophisticated code of laws, customs and conduct, Ayuukhl Nisga’a is the living record of our nation and our view of the world. It is Nisga’a history as told by our elders; the creation of the world, the Great Flood, the volcano’s eruption, the founding of the great families and their crest system, the mythical feasts of warriors and spirits, the role of Nisga'a Simgigat, Sigidim Haanak', K'uba-Wilksihlkw (younger-ranking Nisga'a), and visitors on our lands.
Ayuukhl Nisga’a shows us that every being has a rightful and meaningful place in society — and that we are all interdependent — we need one another. In Nisga'a society, one's identity is symbolized by one's Ayukws (crests) which is portrayed on regalia and other Wilp (House)/family property, and by our beliefs of sharing wealth in a meaningful and carefully planned way.
As part of our statement in the Nisga'a Nation, our Vision states:
Nilhl gan aluut’aahl naa nuum, wil dip hooxhl Ayuugam, lip algaxam, ganhl lip wilaa loom
Our Ayuuk, language, and culture are
the foundation of our identity
Ayuukhl Nisga’a Department
Nisga’a Lisims Government is committed to protecting and promoting Nisga’a culture in all aspects of society. Ayuukhl Nisga’a — the ancient laws and customs of the Nisga’a people — informs, guides, and inspires the learning of Nisga’a culture. The Nisga’a Constitution provides that Simgigat (Chieftains), Sigidim Haanak' (Matriarchs), and respected Nisga’a elders advise Nisga’a Government on matters relating to the traditional values of the Nisga’a Nation through the Council of Elders, and that Nisga’a Government must respect and encourage the use of the Nisga’a language and the practice of Nisga’a culture.
The Ayuukhl Nisga’a Department (AND) protects, preserves, and promotes Nisga’a language, culture, and history. This is achieved through:
- development and maintenance of the catalogue system for Nisga’a archives
- digitizing audio interviews with elders and past leaders
- resource and administrative support for the Council of Elders and various government committees
- liaison and negotiations with outside museums and institutes
- collaborating and supporting various language and culture initiatives by various NLG stakeholders
- research and production of books on key aspects of Nisga’a culture, and
- supporting other NLG languages and culture initiatives.
For more information, contact: 250 633 3000.