The Heiltsuk Nation is a First Nations government in the Central Coast region of the Canadian province of British Columbia, centred on Campbell Island in the community of Bella Bella, British Columbia. The Heiltsuk people speak the Heiltsuk language, and were, like their language, and along with the neighbouring Haisla and Wuikinuxv (Owekeeno) peoples, incorrectly known in the past as the "Northern Kwakiutl". The Heiltsuk were also known as the Bella Bella, after their core community.
The present day Heiltsuk First Nation is an amalgamation of 5 tribal groups who inhabited an area approximately 6000 square miles of the Central Coast of British Columbia. The Heiltsuk peoples lived off of both land and sea in the region between Milbanke Sound and Fisher Channel. Heiltsuk territories include numerous inlets, islands, peninsulas, mountains and valleys. Rivers and streams cascade into the sea through heavy forests and dense undergrowth.‘‘Oral traditions of the present-day Heiltsuk maintain that the first generation of their ancestors were "set-down" by the Maker in various places within Heiltsuk territory and were living here before the time of a Great Flood.’ Geological evidence shows people have been living there continuously for the past 9,700 years. 1,400 of the 2,200 Heiltsuk membership live on Campbell Island, which is approximately 78 nautical miles from the British Columbia mainland, and 98 nautical miles from Vancouver Island.
Chief and Councillors
Through custom code the Heiltsuk Nation elects it’s chief and 12 council members who serve a 2-4 year term.
The Heiltsuk, are speakers of Heiltsuk-Oowekyala, which is the central member of the northern branch of the Wakashan language family. The Heiltsuk call their language Hailhzaqvla, which means "the Heiltsuk language".
Established by the Heiltsuk Tribal council in 2006, the Heiltsuk Economic Development Corporation (HEDC) , manages the business affairs of the Heiltsuk people. HEDC was developed to create an effective separation between business and politics in support of achieving the communities economic development goals.
Education and Cultural Institutions
The Heiltsuk Cultural Education Centre is located in the Bella Bella Community School (Right, High school wing).
For over twenty years, the Heiltsuk Cultural Education Centre has been devoted to researching, preserving, and revitalizing the history, language and cultural traditions of the Heiltsuk Nation, located on the Central Coast of British Columbia, Canada. Heiltsuk Cultural Centre website.
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- [(https://www.sfu.ca/brc/virtual_village/heiltsuk.html) "The virtual village project"]. Retrieved 29 April 2014.
- [(http://www.hcec.ca/heiltsuk.html) "Heiltsuk Cultural Education Centre"]. Retrieved 29 April 2014.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Heiltsuk.|
- BC Treaty.net entry
- Bella Bella, a 1975 short documentary, National Film Board of Canada
-  Heiltsuk Cultural Education Centre
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