University of Northern British Columbia
February 3, 2010
Sophie Thomas is a Healer and Elder of the SaiíKuz First Nation west of Prince George. She is a living encyclopedia of traditional ecological knowledge and provided much of the content and inspiration for the book, The Plants and Medicines of Sophie Thomas, prepared by UNBC professors Jane Young and Alex Hawley and published in 2002. It is currently in its third printing, with 2000 sold to date. She is the mother of 15 children and the traditionally adoptive mother of 15 more.
by Stephen Hume
The Vancouver Sun - Saturday, December 9, 2000
The Four Seasons of Sophie Thomas
takes a less journalistic approach to the same general theme, opting instead for the more satisfying poetic visual language of symbol and metaphor. Filmed at Stoney Creek on the much-damaged Nechako River, it's the story of an 87-year-old Carrier elder and her profound knowledge of an ancient wisdom about the medicinal values of plants that too many of us see as either weeds or industrial feedstock. (CLICK for full story
by Leanne Tarling
OMINECA EXPRESS, May 24, 2000
Each of us has our own gift. It might be as simple as the desire to help a
neighbour or as complex as practicing medicine.
Saik'uz elder Sophie Thomas has the greatest gift of all. She saves lives using her herbal medicines, a gift she shares for free.
Red alder, chokecherry and wild raspberry branches are the ingredients for her cancer medicine. But they are becoming more difficult to find.
"They come from the environment," she says of her medicines. If we look after the environment, it will look after us. If we destroy it, we destroy ourselves."
"Most healers know one [medicine]," explained her daughter Minnie. "The best, they know four. I've known four since I was young. But Mom does more than ten."
Minnie is constantly amazed by her mother's talents. She once received a call about a man who was hurt and bleeding but nothing they could do in hospital helped. When she went to knock on her mother's door, she found medicine already prepared on the stove.
"I feel it," said Sophie. "It comes to me. It keeps bothering me until I make the medicine. And then someone comes when it is ready." (CLICK for full story