Our Model

Native and non-Native gathering.

Together we can heal our relationship with land and each other

We are the Wabanaki Commission on Land and Stewardship and First Light, and we're helping to reimagine Maine as a Wabanaki place by restoring Wabanaki presence and access to land. This work relies on relationships between Native and non-native people, each working within our own nations and organizations to find a better way forward, together.

We move at the speed of trust

  • People speaking during gathering

    First Light

    Land Return Initiative

    First Light is a collective of non-native land-oriented organizations and agencies working to expand Wabanaki access and stewardship of land toward a future of nature and people thriving in Wabanaki homelands.

Learn about how First Light organizations work at the direction of the Wabanaki Commission and what we are accomplishing together.

Our Progress

Wabanaki Territory, today, is mostly in the hands of non-native people and organizations. The Wabanaki Commission and First Light are working to restore balance to pursue land recovery priorities and return land to Tribal holding.


  • Heron's Rip
    For First Light Community Organizations



    The work of land justice in Maine calls for our best selves. It asks for our individual, personal sustained commitment beyond projects and job descriptions and calendars. What yearnings feed and sustain this work for you? While the work of First Light is new, we know it is filled with both great joy and great challenge. What are the motivations that inspire it; how do we nourish each other to stay at it?

    This is a 3 night/four-day camping experience on the Downeast landscape that initiated Peter Forbes who will be joined by others in First Light to guide us with provocative questions, good facilitation, and a beautiful place to do creative, sustaining things together like carve, fish, explore, recommit to the work and to each other. No matter if you are new to First Light or have been part of it for many years, this time will help to sustain the questions and motivations inside of you for years to come. Please express your interest in participating to Axandra@knollfarm.org.

Wabanaki Commission logo mark in shape of illustrated feather with mountain and sunrise landscape, river, trees, and fiddlehead


Reunite with Your Homeland

Explore cultural activities and projects that reunite us with the land and each other.

First Light Logo Mark, circle with sunrise, water, birds, and trees.


Return Land

We'll work with land-holding organizations to help them offer land back to the Wabanaki Commission.
(Not yet able to return land? There's still a place for you in this movement.)