Field Trip Summary Report

The community is an essential cell of human society, said Pope John XXIII. Indeed, the role of community in human life is hard to overestimate. Everyone has its history, traditions, culture, and social structure with a high interdependence of people within it. Even a small group of people can still be considered a particular community if it represents an independent social unit. The demonstrative example is McLeod Lake Indian Reservation (MLIR) of British Columbia, Canada.

MLIR illustrates a typical aboriginal Indian reservation. The development of this community is to a great extent conditioned by the degree of integration of Gemeinschaft and Gesellschaft. The interaction of individuals within the MLIR community is rather tight. The observations showed that the role of close relations among people is vital. It is reflected soundly in the social structure of the community. Gender roles are very close to matriarchy society as women do the most of the collective work to contain the families. A family takes an essential place in MLIR society hence the establishment of the community daycare system for children. Another critical element contributing the development of this community is social work. Social workers pay much attention to all fields, from daycare to forestry. The power structure of MLIR is a democracy. The majority chooses counselors and the Chief every three years.

From the viewpoint of organizational themes, MLIR is a somewhat sustainable community. Reservation forestry conditions economic development. Logging 20000 hectares of land is a significant financial branch of this community. Besides, the reservation invested in gas and oil thus it is rather self-sufficient society. The efficient use of their land’s natural resources makes an ecological state of MLIR very fine. The centralized power within reservation comes from its geothermal power. The social balance of the community is not highly developed. However, the cultural development of this reservation is rather important for the residents. Culture is mostly concentrated on their beliefs, traditions, and values.

The McLeod Indian Reservation is an attribute community, the group of people who share common race, culture, language, goals, and other functions. The culture is Sekani/Athabascan, the language in the community is Tsek’ehne. This reservation, to my mind, is a rather self-sustainable community that is kept by its residents very effectively. However, some changes within it will be useful. The major direction should be focusing on social balance development. Besides, the development should consider people’s health, culture, and economy to be an entirely sustainable community.

Despite its small size, only 407 people, McLeod Indian Reservation is a developed community with deep historical and cultural roots. Its sustainability gives ground for a forward-looking development of this little society.

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