Documentary offers glimpse of Tribal coming-of-age ceremony

In recognition of Native Heritage Month, HAF+WRCF acknowledges the diversity, history, and stories of the First Peoples of this region by lifting up the award-winning documentary “Long Line of Ladies”.

We believe it is important to spotlight stories that not only share this history, but celebrate cultural resilience and continuity. These stories remind us that Native Peoples are an active and strong part of our contemporary community fabric and well-being.

The 22-minute documentary “Long Line of Ladies” is one of these stories. Although centered on the traditions of the Karuk, this story is representative of many local tribes that have worked to bring these ceremonies back for their young people. The film shares the journey of Ahty Allen as she prepares for her Ihuk, a Karuk coming-of-age ceremony, with the loving support of her family and community.

This film is currently being featured by the New York Times Op-Ed Documentaries for Native American Heritage Month and we encourage you to watch this film with your family and take the time to discuss this and other available resources this month, and year-round. Learn more and watch the film HERE >

The film introduction explains, “The ceremony was held for generations without interruption until the violence and destruction brought on by the Gold Rush, where Native American girls and women were victims of sexual violence.” And further shares that “… in the early 1990’s a group of Karuk people worked to bring the ceremony back to once again honor their girls as they transition into womanhood.”

The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and was named “2022’s Best Documentary Short” at the SXSW (South by Southwest) Film Festival, as well as being recognized and shown at numerous film festivals both nationally and internationally. Most recently it received the Best Short Documentary award at the 47th Annual American Indian Film Institute’s Film Festival held in San Francisco, the oldest American Indian Film Festival in the nation.

The documentary was co-produced by local Karuk and Yurok, Pimm Tripp-Allen who is currently serving as the Senior Advisor for Tribal and Native American Relations for the Foundation. Also appearing in the film are two other staff members Holly Hensher, Senior Program Officer with the Strategy, Program and Community Solutions Team, and Tayshu Bommelyn, Senior Program Officer with the Native Cultures Fund.

“I am honored to work in a place that is committed to serving all parts of its community and supports opportunities for cross-cultural learning and connection. By lifting up stories like the one our family shared in this film, HAF+WRCF shows a recognition of the value of local knowledge and its importance in supporting and building community wellness,” said Tripp-Allen.

HAF+WRCF is committed to supporting the topics discussed in this film and we are honored to be the home for multiple funds that support healing and wellness for Native Women, families, and community. Please see our website to learn more about the Long Line of Ladies Fund, the Native Cultures Fund or the Pacific Redwood Missing and Murdered Indigenous Peoples Crisis Action Fund.

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