Sharlene Alook Team Photo

Sharlene Alook

Facilitator, Translator and Consultant, Bigstone Cree Nation

I am a proud nehiyawiskew (Cree Woman) from Bigstone Cree Nation. I speak Cree fluently. I love learning new things, I am a life-long learner. I am a master’s student at the University of Alberta in the Resource Economics and Environmental Sociology department. My thesis is on Indigenous place names and mapping. I enjoy working with kehtehayak (elders), they are my teachers and role models. I admire their strength, wisdom, and patience. Capturing their experiences and knowledge is especially important in maintaining and transferring Indigenous culture. My passion is to translate and document their stories and teachings to educate and bring awareness of our continued relationship with okawimawaskiy (Mother Earth). Practicing nehiyaw (Cree) traditional practices, protecting the land, wildlife, and water through stewardship, and revitalizing the Cree language are all acts of resilience. This resilience contributes to developing sustainable practices to benefit future generations. My children and future grandchildren will be impacted by climate change. I need to transfer the elders’ knowledge onto them for their survival and to uphold Indigenous values. My legacy is to leave this world knowing that I contributed to conserving and protecting Nehiyaw way of life through Nehiyawewin (Cree language) by documenting traditional places that have significant meaning that impact our health and well-being. This is my goal, my responsibility, and my passion.