One of the FCSS initiatives that is creating independence for the Tribe members are the Community Gardens that have been grown in the communitites of Levern and Stand-off. Each garden is carefully planted by members of the community on a volunteer basis. During the summer months they are cared for and nurtured until the gardens are harvested communally. Potatoes and a variety of vegetables are grown, many of them being started in the Tribe's own greenhouse and transplanted into the gardens. Last year the harvest reached nearly 40,000lbs.

Another plant that was being grown was traditional tobacco for ceremonial use, this was a very successful initiative and yielded approximately 6,000 plants. This project was part of a province-wide tobacco intitiative to research tradtional use of this highly regarded plant.

Goals:

The Blood Tribe Tobacco Control Strategy will work towards an educational program dealing with Tobacco misuse before and after pre-European contact.

Objectives:

We will collaborate with our elders, departments, agencies, schools and Chief & Council to seek ways of eliminating tobacco misuse by our First Nations, Inuit & Metis people.

We will inform all participants the difference between traditional tobacco and commercial tobacco usage.

We encourage and guide our people to respect and use tobacco like our fore fathers and grandmothers did long before pre-European contact.

We will decrease the high percentage of tobacco abuse by First Nations, Inuit,and Metis people by 1% percent each year.

The Blood Tribe Tobacco Control Strategy Project will supply tobacco to all participants with the Alberta First Nations, Inuit, and Metis Tobacco Control Strategy.