Shwaanga: one of the densest populated Tongva
villages of the Los Angeles Basin and a gateway to the ocean and to the interior. It was a pivotal place for trade, hunting,
fishing, gatherings, important ceremonies, festivals and for collecting fresh water once called “Sweet Water.”
This proposal is to create a “Living Museum/Educational Habitat” at Harbor Regional Park/Machado Lake.
This is a revitalization project to preserve the area for generations to come. A Tongva Wetland Village, called the Shwaanga
Village, and it will instill a sense of wonder, respect and stewardship for our Mother Earth, her water, her air, and her
ecosystems. The village will be shared with schools, communities and other organizations to engage, entertain, and educate
through exhibits, storytelling and programs about the earth, its wetland’s and the lives of the Indigenous People and
the descendants of the Tongva nation.
Wee’ Nehiinkem- All Our Relatives:
Statement of Need: Why this project is necessary.
The upkeep, repair
and continuous vandalism of this area has indicated a very serious need to look for solutions. Our response is a revitalization
program that is a two fold solution which combines the Indigenous People’s cultural mandate to protect and preserve
the environment with helping the City of Los Angeles, Recreation and Parks, and the surrounding communities preserve one of
the last natural wetlands of the Los Angeles Basin.
These programs will be implemented by Inner Tribal Indigenous
Staff, Community Volunteers, trained Docents and Friends of Indigenous Ways.
The following pages will give
you a detailed outline of Implementation:
TO THE TONGVA VILLAGE OF SHWAANGA, KITOOVAR-OUR HOMELAND”
The first thing we will ask all our guests
is to leave all electronics at home or in their cars.
Imagine spending an entire day with Native Americans (Indigenous
People) doing things that they have been doing for thousands of years. Imagine going on a tour of a real Tongva village and
being guided on a lake on which our ancestors used to hunt and fish. Imagine the thrill of making a real tule canoe with your
own hands. Imagine being guided through a village identifying plants and animals the way Native Americans did. Imagine sitting
near a fire while a Native American told you stories from long ago. Also you would be learning songs of our People and sharing
in a dance or two, around the campfire where legends are made. This is an opportunity for all people who want to come for
a day, a weekend, or a week of sharing. It is something for the whole family to enjoy and learn about the “First People
of the Los Angeles Basin”.
This is a Sample Brochure, front and back
We will be actively seeking volunteers to help us fulfill
our goals. Voluteers to help maintain the area, policing the grounds, guards to watch our facilities, work in the kitchen
when we have events or ceremonies, preparing gifts, help with fundraising and so much more is needed to make this wonderful
opportunity a reality. Creating a docent program to help lead workshop, tours, assisting with songs, dance and storytelling.