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Outreach workers invite Indigenous people from Victoria’s streets to celebrate their culture – Times Colonist

About 100 people gathered at Mungo Martin House for six hours of First Nations feasting and dancing.

Bernice Kamano has been trying to bring Victoria’s urban Indigenous and unhoused population back in touch with their culture for several decades.

Having grown up in foster care, Kamano — who is Da’naxda’xw and has Heiltsuk heritage through her father — knows first hand how important it is to stay connected to your roots.

Her eyes became alive when she recalled the first time she attended a potlatch in Alert Bay. “It was like I had never seen culture before,” she said.

Many of the Indigenous ­people living on the streets in Victoria are often disconnected from their families and their nations, Kamano said.

“They miss out on this beautiful part of our culture that just gives them strength, power and acknowledgement of who they actually are.”

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