Support Kenhte:ke Seed Sanctuary & Learning Centre and Ratinenhayén:thos

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Author: Sustain Ontario

Posted: January 14, 2021

Categories: GoodFoodBites

Kenhte:ke Seed Sanctuary & Learning Centre (KSSLC) and Ratinenhayén:thos are running a fundraiser to support their 2021 operations, with the hope to secure resources to hire a garden educator, who would play an important role in the management and curation of their seed collection as well as mentor youth.

Read the December 2020 message copied from KSSLC below:

“You may or may not know us already. If not, please consider visiting our website ( and facebook page (@kenhtekeseeds) for more information about the special seed conservation work led by Ratinenhayen:thos.

Ratinenhayen:thos is a local non-profit organization founded by members of the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte and is host to a living seed collection of 300 Indigenous and Heirloom seed varieties of vegetables, herbs and flowers. Kenhte:ke Seed Sanctuary & Learning Centre (KSSLC) is located in Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory and was established in 2018.

KSSLC is the first Indigenous Seed Sanctuary in Canada that we know about with this innovative action towards seed conservation (protection and preservation) and sharing seed saving education for future generations of seed custodians, gardeners and farmers.

KSSLC requires a professional gardener and expert in the management and curation of the seed collection. As living seeds the entire collection must be grown in a 5 to 7 years cycle maintaining viability and adaptability of each variety to the local environment and changes in climate. Much of this work happens in a controlled setting with the leadership of our gardener who carefully plans and organizes work bees with small groups of youth and volunteers from the community and surrounding area.

Through KSSLC, Ratinenhayen:thos is able to achieve their vision of a sacred space dedicated to the art and education of seed saving, and where sustainable cultivation methods are used and promoted in accordance with Rotinonhsyon:ni cosmology and tradition. There is a strong youth focus and involvement and Ratinenhayen:thos hopes to do more mentorship with youth. Ratinenhayen:thos has distributed more than 100 seed packages to our community and surrounding area in only two seasons with the collection. We have also hosted seed conferences and workshops to encourage knowledge sharing around good seed practices.

Ratinenhayen:thos volunteers work on fundraising and grant writing throughout the year however it can be challenging and like last year we are doing a donations drive, this time for the month of December. Our goal is to raise over 50,000 dollars towards our 2021 operations. This money will go towards employee wages, garden materials, the completion of the seed drying room and the instalment of a compostable toilet. We can receive donations via paypal, cash and cheques.

We need you! Please consider donating to Ratinenhayen:thos and KSSLC. For more information email us at: