Starting in 2022, First Light is aimed toward building a more connected alliance of First Light practitioners committed to our shared goals of sharing and returning land. We will work collectively with the understanding that we are stronger together: many organizations might be able to achieve what one organization could not.
First Light will organize our community by supporting the self-selection process of First Light ambassadors and working groups. Here are the specifics of becoming a First Light ambassador organization:
Who can become a First Light ambassador?
- Any organization that has been through Cohort I or Cohort II of First Light’s learning journey.
What is asked of those who work collectively as ambassadors of First Light?
- We are in the process of developing a series of commitments for Ambassador organizations. Please attend one of our upcoming Calls to Collective Commitment to join the conversation about these plans.
- To gain organizational support for and submit a statement of intention to being a First Light ambassador, which names 2 point people within each organization. This letter will be renewed every 2 years.
- To be committed to relearning, recentering and returning.
- To come to each other with opportunities, support, honest advice and critique, and resources.
- To shift from transactions to relationships, beginning with our own relationships among ourselves. Afterwards, to build respect and trust between us and many Wabanaki people.
- To share our stories with each other, especially our mistakes, so that we can act with utmost respect in the future.
Why do we have these expectations?
- To maintain the trustworthiness the name First Light has gained with our Wabanaki colleagues. We have been asked by our Wabanaki colleagues to offer a high level of commitment.
- To “do our own work” and hold our community accountable to working within values of respect and reciprocity, in order to build, not burden, Wabanaki capacity.
Potential roles of First Light ambassadors
- Prepare and educate your organization through the self-guided curriculum.
- Sign up and participate in the First Light ambassadors summit in November 2022. Starting in November 2022, First Light programs will only be open to ambassador organizations.
- Facilitate or participate in a working group organized to meet a specific Wabanaki need.
Why are we organizing collective action?
- We aspire to reciprocity: our goal is to expand Wabanaki access and relationship to land for prosperity and to create a stronger conservation movement that includes and reflects Indigenous expertise and perspective. Collecting our work under the name of First Light intentionally places our own organizational identities underneath the importance of our shared values. We seek to restore a balance that strengthens everyone; All can benefit from our collective action.