Bella Bella, is the home of the Heiltsuk Nation and located on the east coast of Campbell Island in the Central Coastal region of British Columbia, Canada. Bella Bella is located 181 km north of Port Hardy and 144 km west of Bella Coola.
Bella Bella originates from a haitzaqv [a.k.a. Heiltsuk] place name that was converted to an Anglo-Canadian place name; this was done by the British Crown representative charged with giving place names for places in British Columbia.
Waglisla was the name of the postal outlet in Bella Bella, it's been renamed Bella Bella after the village name; it was never the alternative place name for Bella Bella. Waglisla is a haitzaqv (Heiltsuk) place name for a former creek that the former postal outlet was situated on; Waglisla was a descriptive place name of how the creek appeared to behave when it hit the beach i.e., it fanned out and sank into the beach. Most place names were of the descriptive type.
With a population of 1,400, Bella Bella is the largest community to be found on the Central Coast north of Queen Charlotte Strait and the Heilstuk are strong, outspoken leaders.
The 2015 herring season saw a crisis erupt over a long-simmering dispute between the Heiltsuk and The Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO). Citing concern for the stocks and Heiltsuk rights, the Heiltsuk occupied the local DFO office for 4 days, and on Oct 28, 2015 they made a Declaration of Title & Rights.
In November 2016 it was announced that all efforts to appeal to the Federal Government to stop the Enbridge Northern Gateway Project was successful. The Heiltsuk personally presented at these hearings. The Heiltsuk continue the work to protect their lands, waters and all the inhabitants.
REASONS TO BRAG
Alexa Gladstone-Brown & Astrid Wilson creators of The Next Generation won the Runner up Best Documentary
Bella Bella Films
This is a personal film that combines beauty, truth and solutions for ways to move forward in the face of racist stereotypes around indigenous people.
A powerful film from the filmmakers point of view where she expresses her personal distrust in the legal systems around the unfair treatment that indigenous women receive when they become missing and murdered. The filmmaker also expresses her own fear to live in a world where this injustice is still happening. This film hopes to change people’s minds and perhaps, even, policy.
A short film that addresses the struggles of depression and then suggests ways to reach out so it doesn’t lead to suicide.
An epic film about bullying: how it affects people who are bullied, possible reasons of why people bully and possible suggestions of how to deal with bullying.
This film talks about cultural learning and how it has changed over the years. It also celebrates how the Heiltsuk community is dedicated to continue it’s traditions.
A film about the residual effects of residential schools (drug abuse) that also leaves the viewer understanding that the Heiltsuk people today are embracing culture rather than drugs.
A traditional Heiltsuk story, animated.
A experimental rumination of self and place in the world.
An informative documentary about oil tankers and the threat they pose to the Heiltsuk way of life.
A documentary exploring the importance of the Heiltsuk culture.
An inspirational documentary celebrating and encouraging youth to engage with the Heiltsuk culture.
A mini documentary exploring how the affects of Residential School still resonate within the community.
Created by the Grade 6/7 class in the Bella Bella Community School.
A film that celebrates the Heiltsuk curriculum - both language and culture - in the Bella Bella Community School.
A brave film encouraging youth who suffer from bullying, depression and suicidal thoughts to turn to others for help.
A film that interviews two different generations about the importance of the Heiltsuk culture.
A film that highlights each individual and their goals and uniqueness to help them move away from sorrow and suicide and into self love and celebration.
An epic animation celebrating Heiltsuk culture.