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A Tribe of One

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'I will tell you once, but you must never ask me again.' With these words from her mother, Rhonda Larrabee discovered the startling truth about her family. She was not of Chinese and French descent, as she had been told while growing up in Vancouver's Chinatown. Rhonda's mother, Marie Lee, was First Nations, and was hiding her roots because of the prejudice she faced.

This discovery shattered Rhonda's world, but as promised, she asked no more questions. It wasn't until after Marie's death that Rhonda delved into the legacy her mother felt forced to escape.

Rhonda's journey led eventually to the dramatic resolution of her own identity: obtaining her Indian Status Card and re-establishing the New Westminster Band. Today, as proud Chief of the Band, she is focused on revitalizing the Qayqayt First Nations.

Featuring beautiful archival images and compelling interviews, this documentary captures Rhonda's quest to embrace her roots and make amends for her mother's pain. As she works to restore her Band's land, culture and pride, she becomes an inspiration to the generations that follow.

A Tribe of One was produced as part of the Reel Diversity Competition for emerging filmmakers of colour. Reel Diversity is a National Film Board of Canada initiative in partnership with CBC Newsworld.



2003, 38 min 49 s

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Honorable Mention - Category: Social Issues
International Film and Video Festival
November 10 to 14 2004, Columbus - USA

Best Documentary Short Award
Annual American Indian Film Festival
November 6 to 13 2004, San Francisco - USA

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