There are few great forests left in the world. And even fewer where indigenous people have been taking care of the land for thousands of years. But such a rare place exists in the heart of Canada's boreal forest. In Ojibwe we call it Pimachiowin Aki (Pim–MATCH–cho–win Ahh–KEY) or "the land that gives life." Ojibwe (Anishinaabe) Elders teach us that the land provides fresh water, healthy food and clean air for many people near and far.

We have listened to the elders and are inspired by how they have been taking care of the land - long before any of us were born. First Nations communities and the Manitoba and Ontario provincial governments are working together in a unique partnership to look after the exceptional forest and the sacred culture that have existed together for centuries.

The Pimachiowin Aki Corporation is working to have 33,400 square kilometers of this boreal forest that straddles the Manitoba-Ontario border in Canada recognized as a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage Site. When a site achieves UNESCO recognition, it means the entire world agrees it is worthy of protection and is important enough to preserve for everyone.

Pimachiowin Aki, “the land that gives life”, has the potential to be one of a very few sites recognized for both cultural and natural values.

With the support of our partners and researchers, the Corporation is strengthening its nomination package – describing why this area should be conserved, protected and promoted – to be submitted in 2015. New ideas about how the landscape is described and a new justification for what UNESCO calls “Outstanding Universal Value” build on the first nomination submitted in 2012. See the 2012 Pimachiowin Aki nomination document or a shorter summary of the nomination.   

 

Join a two-minute flight and boat ride over the trees and along the water. Music by Eric Courchene & traditional drummers of Poplar River. See more videos.
Elders, like John McDonald of Poplar River, remind us the Creator made this land and expects us to take care of it for the children of the future. See more photos.