Elders and Youth Conference Speakers Reflect On Theme

FAIRBANKS- During the Elders and Youth Conference, the two key note speakers encouraged everyone to learn from the past to create a good future. The elder keynote speaker, Larry Chercasen, spoke of great challenges growing up. During World War II, he was sent to an Aleut internment camp for three years. Despite unfair treatment, he is inspired by his ancestors’ abilities to adapt to a globalized world. The youth Key note speaker, Nelson Kanuk, spoke about the threat of climate change and working to find a better balance with the earth. He compared elder knowledge to a vital resource to learn from. “Take that resource that you have now, that resource that you have in reach while it’s still there because without their knowledge, how do we know who we are?” Kanuk said.