The Beringia Metaphor

Beringia was an ancient place that joined two continents. This 3200km land bridge stretched from the Kolyma River in Siberia to the MacKenzie River in Canada during the Pleistocene ice age. The Beringia land bridge is believed to have enabled human and animal migration to the Americas from Asia. It was also a centre of evolution and it supported unique plant and animal communities. This fragile barren and isolated landscape must have enforced for its inhabitants their dependence on the land. Settlement of Beringia is a testament to the resilience of First Peoples. Survival depended on innovation and a complex array of cultural and technological skills, tools and close-knit communities, including social support and planning.

Beringia Community Planning Inc. draws inspiration from this ancient place in its approach to planning. Beringia’s work aspires to bridge cultures by promoting cross and inter-cultural understanding and learning, including facilitating collaborative planning processes within and between cultures. Planning practice is entrusted with stewardship of our fragile lands and resources which we depend on for our survival. We seek to foster the same qualities that supported the resilience of those First People in today’s First Nations communities helping to adapt and innovate in response to our global modern day opportunities and challenges. While forward looking, Beringia values and incorporates ancient wisdom that has supported communities for thousands of years. Just as that ancient wisdom travelled from one continent to another, Beringia aims to support the continued migration of ideas and knowledge from Elders to Youth, from First Nation to First Nation, from culture to culture.