Indigenous Digital Media Grants

The eagle flies the highest in the sky, and in a coast salish story people would seek guidance from the eagle to gain knowledge of faraway places. This representational eagle wing relief was created to bring the knowledge to students as they seek guidance in their studies. -- Marissa Nahanee

About the Grants

Indigenous Digital Media Grants (IDMG) provide financial support to SFU researchers, creators, and makers to cover costs associated with the development of Indigenous digital resources. We welcomed applications for projects that aimed to create forms of “digital media” through processes of digitization, or through the creation of new media (films, podcasts, websites, etc).

Funded by SFU’s Aboriginal Strategic Initiative with one-time funding of about $140,000, and in keeping with the goals articulated in the 2017 SFU Aboriginal Reconciliation Council (ARC) report, this grant is one way of directly supporting projects and initiatives at SFU that will have a “legacy” effect -- through the creation and enrichment of Indigenous digital resources that are relevant to SFU and that have the potential “to create meaningful, sustained change” (p.28) at the university.


This grant was available for continuing or limited-term faculty (including tenured and tenure-track faculty, lecturers, librarians, archivists, and limited-term faculty of one year or more), staff, graduate students (at the Master’s or PhD level), and postdoctoral fellows.

Proposals were accepted from SFU departments, Centres, Institutes, or other campus units, and also from individual faculty and graduate students.

Amount and project completion timeline

Up to $10,000 was awarded per project.

Projects should be completed within one (1) year of the award date. For example, projects awarded in December 2020 should be completed by December 2021; projects awarded in March 2021 should be completed by March 2022.

Access to resources

Though the SFU Library is committed to providing open access to digitized resources, we recognize that some culturally-sensitive materials may require further access protocols (as determined by individual or community needs).

Selection process

A selection committee, composed of representatives from the Department of Indigenous Studies, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, and SFU Library evaluated the applications. 

Funded projects

An Interactive Glossary of Linguistic Concepts for SFU Indigenous Language Revitalists, Heather Bliss (Linguistics) 

The Brandon Residential School Cemetery Project, Katherine Nichols (Interdisciplinary PhD student)

Conversations at the Forefront of Indigenous Education, Caroyln Roberts (Faculty of Education: Indigenous Faculty Lecturer) and Calder Cheverie (Indigenous Ed. Alumnus, digital-arts practitioner)

Critical Understandings of Land & Water: Unsettling Place at SFU, Amy Parent (Faculty of Education)

Digital Home for the Squamish Ocean Canoe Family, Larry Nahanee (President, Squamish Ocean Canoe Family), Jonathon Reynolds (International Sustainability Education Foundation) and Lilia Yumagulova, Postdoctoral Fellow, SFU

Digitizing Cree: Endangered Languages and Artificial Intelligence, Dr. Eldon Yellowhorn (Department of Indigenous Studies) and Dr. Angelica Lim (Department of Computer

“For the next seven generations”: An exploration of “Urban Indigenous Women’s Leadership Framework” through the experiences of Indigenous women engaged in a community-based leadership program, Dr. Michelle Pidgeon (Faculty of Education), Ravina Dhaliwal, Krystal Dumais, Amelia Boissioneau, Megan Rosso, Melissa Lumberjack, Naomi Kennedy (Skookum Lab and the Ambassador Program)

From Ceremony Up, Dr. Lyana Patrick (Faculty of Health Sciences) 

Haida Revitalization, Lucy Bell (Interdisciplinary PhD student)

Journey Through Skwxwú7mesh Úxwumixw, Ashley Edwards (SFU Library) and Paul Natrall (Squamish Nation)

Kitselas Data Sovereignty and Digital Mapping Project, Dr. Chelsey Armstrong (Indigenous Studies) and Chris J. Apps (Director, Kitselas Lands and Resources, Kitselas First Nation)

Materials to Help Learn Ktunaxa (Together, Apart), Elise McClay (Linguistics)

The Visible Movement Project, Dr. Leanne Ramer (Biomedical Physiology and Kinesiology)

The Water We Call Home: Materials and Belongings Digitization and Cataloguing, Jessica Hallenbeck, Kate Hennessy, Rosemary Georgeson (School for Interactive Arts and Technology)

Yuusténam̓ut cht: Transformative Conversations about Economic Reconciliation with Sxwpilemaát SiyámSxwpilemaát Siyám - Chief Leanne Joe (Community Economic Development, Faculty of Environment)

Reporting requirements

All successful applicants are required to provide brief update reports three times a year, and a final report to the IDMG Committee upon completion (approx. 1 year from the award date). This report must include:

  • the overall outcomes of the project,
  • a summary of how grant funds have been used, and,
  • either a copy or link to the “digital media” produced.

A template for this final report will be available for successful applicants.


Contact Ashley Edwards with any questions.