“Managing Groundwater with the Paiute” Alan Bacock, Big Pine Paiute Tribe of the Owens Valley's Water Program Coordinator, testing water levels.

A Brief History of How Los Angeles Dried Up Owens Valley’s ‘Indian Ditches’

Tribal elders and water experts offer a window into the history of water in Owens Valley and how it ran dry.

Members of two northern Paiute tribes describe the lush valley where their tribes survived for thousands of years. This changed quickly with the growing presence of settlers and the growing thirst of the city that became Los Angeles. Through a complex system of reservoirs, canals and aqueducts, the metropolis siphons and pumps unprecedented amounts of surface and groundwater, further exacerbating unresolved water rights issues that tribal members deal with on a daily basis.

Full Episodes

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Tribal Hunting with the Pit River Peoples

The industrialized production of meat products has created numerous health issues: it has separated us from the animals it comes from, it is often inhumanely grown, and it is often filled with chemical additives. This episode explores how members of the Pit River Tribe in Northeast California are reviving traditional hunting practices, embracing Community Science initiatives to preserve and monitor wild elk and deer populations; as well as developing statewide intertribal trading networks for the distribution of humanely sourced and sustainable Native foods.

Healing The Body with United Indian Health Services

While “Food Deserts” is a term used by many to describe urban areas without access to fresh food, this issue is not just one that inner city areas are struggling with. Native peoples in rural areas often lack easy access to healthy, affordable food and a younger generation is witnessing the effects of health issues in their community. As a result, they have started several food sovereignty programs across California. The most prominent of these is in Arcata, CA at UIHS’ Potawot Community Garden which is serving as an inspiration for other initiatives across California.

Rethinking The Coast with the Ti'at Society

Climate change and urban development have significantly altered ocean conditions and our ability to access the coast, making it more and more difficult for the Tongva tribe to carry on their long-held seafaring traditions. Today, members of the Tongva, Chumash and Acjachemen are rebuilding their connection with the ocean and the Channel Islands by rebuilding a Ti’at, a traditional Tongva canoe.

Holistic Healing with the Syuxtun Collective

Since the 20th century, Western medicine has focused on treating a patient’s symptoms, not the underlying cause. Today, scientists and doctors are realizing that we should be wary of a health system that relies on direct-to-consumer pharmaceutical advertising and are embracing alternative, preventive whole body options, which start with a healthy mind, body, and spirit. These are concepts Indigenous peoples have practiced for thousands of years, by using medicinal plant knowledge that informed much our pharmacopeia.