Culture Saves Lives

An awareness campaign to reconnect all people with their culture as a harm reduction and life saving health intervention, especially First Nations people oppressed by mechanisms of colonization such as residential schools and the foster care system, including those who are traditionally left out of the circle. The release of the Paige Report made clear the need for immediate action toward social change and justice.

Culture Saves Lives staged several campaigns and events around Vancouver to raise awareness for their cause:

Medicine Wheels

Vancouver, BC

DURC peers created thirty medicine wheels to launch the Culture Saves Lives campaign and hung them throughout the city of Vancouver.

East Van Eagle Feather

East Van Cross

Culture Saves Lives volunteers took action and hung a sixteen-foot Eagle Feather on the iconic East Van Cross to lift the hearts of the people.

Eagle Feather created by community artist, Larissa Healey.


World’s Largest Eagle Staff

Portland Hotel

Initiative lead, Patrick Smith; community artist, Larissa Healey; and community volunteers—inspired by the East Van Eagle Feather—created and hoisted a sixty foot eagle staff to hang from the rooftop of the Portland Hotel at 20 W. Hastings.

Sharing Our Wisdom Report Release

Canada Place

Culture Saves Lives filled Canada Place with song, prayer, and drum to celebrate the release of Dr. Teresa Howell’s Aboriginal Health Research Initiative, Sharing Our Wisdom, which supports and validates that Culture Saves Lives.


Culture Saves Lives Community Event

Hastings Urban Farm

This event was held in the DTES to bring rich culture and tradition to those who need it most: elders, medicine men, singers, drummers, and dancers came together to support one another, share stories, and engage in community healing.