YORKTON -- A traditional land-use study is underway to discover how deep Metis roots run in Southeastern Saskatchewan.

Researchers hope to trace the movements of the Metis peoples using interactive maps and storyboards, in partnership with Parks Canada and X-Terra.

“This is allowing us to really dig a deep dive into that Metis footprint in that area. This research will identify the history of Metis people-along with the communities and traditions that took place there,” said Mark Calette, senior director of lands and consultation for Metis Nation-Saskatchewan.

He added that although much is already known, there is lots more that to be discovered.

The research will provide information on important activities and the partnerships between the Metis people and farming communities in the past.

Oral-based knowledge systems play an important role in Indigenous cultures and is the primary source of First Nations teachings and history. With the current generation of elders growing older, Calette said that it is vital to capture the knowledge of the region while they still can.

“Every time one of our elders dies, it’s like a library burning down and that’s what we are really focusing on because don’t want to lose those opportunities,” said Calette

Calette said this research will have positive impacts varying from land claims, education, and the opportunity to be the narrators of their own story.

“We’re going to be able to share stories there like we’ve never been able to before. We’re going to have opportunities to take this information and work within the school system and share things through education,” said Calette

Metis Nation-Saskatchewan said this project will never truly meet its end. Although the brunt of the work will conclude, the gathering of stories will continue.

Any Metis citizens who want to take part in the study or have history to share can contact Metis Nation-Saskatchewan.