Cowichan Tribes - Lulumexun

Cowichan Tribes' Lulumexun Department has led the work to protect and care for Ye'yumnuts since the beginning! 

Lulumexun are caregivers and guardians - preserving and protecting Quw’utsun tumuhw, waters, and all beings. They work to advance self-governance, assert Quw’utsun Mustimuhw inherent rights, and keep Quw'utsun territory thriving for future generations. 

The Lulumexun Department is responsible for all property legal transactions and permit requirements, maintaining property records for all Cowichan Reserve lands, and protecting Cowichan Tribes’ land rights and title. 

Please contact Lulumexun if you encounter any archaeological site, objects, or ancestral remains.

Protecting, Commemorating, and Sharing Ye'Yumnuts

A Sacred Site Reborn

A Space for Honouring and Learning

For decades, Cowichan Tribes has worked to protect and preserve Ye'yumnuts, an ancient settlement and burial site near what's presently known as Somenos Creek.

In partnership with the UVic Anthropology Department, Cowichan Tribes spearheaded the commemorating Ye'yumnuts project. A new component of this project is the construction of an outdoor classroom that will provide a protected space to learn from Quw'utsun Elders and knowledge holders.


In May 2024, construction began on an outdoor classroom, which includes a Coast Salish styled outdoor pavilion, new trails, kiosks, signage, fencing, and entrance boulders. 

Project completion is scheduled for the fall of 2024.

Guided By Quw'utsun Elders

Throughout the planning process, Quw'utsun Elders have provided guidance for onsite Hul'q'umi'num' language resources, as well as insight into traditional Quw'utsun practices. Caring for the grave sites is a community responsibility, serving as a way for Quw'utsun Mustimuhw to maintain relationships with all kin, both living and deceased. 

Visitors to the site are reminded to refrain from bringing food or drinks, and to honour Quw'utsun ancestors by keeping the site clean. 

Preserving Ye'Yumnuts for Future Generations

Looking ahead, challenges remain in further protecting Ye'yumnuts and asserting Cowichan Tribes jurisdiction over the site. The removal of invasive species, such as parrot feather and Scotch broom, is integral to the wellbeing of the site.

In collaboration with project partners, Lulumexun remains dedicated to preserving the legacy of Ye'yumnuts. This commitment honours the wisdom of Quw'utsun ancestors and serves as a gift to future generations, ensuring that the lessons of the past continue to guide our path forward. 

Ye'Yumnuts Outdoor Classroom Pavilion Construction Slideshow

In 2006 a short documentary was made chronicling Cowichan Elders and Cowichan Tribes Lands Department concerns about Ye'yumnuts.  At the time the site was threatened by urban development.  The site is now protected, but this film is still important to understand Ye'yumnuts in the cultural and social landscape.

Cowichan Tribes Lands Department has been the force behind protecting and honouring Ye'yumnuts since 1992. Here, Dianne Hinkley from Cowichan Tribes shares with a group of students about the significance of the plants, fish, birds and animals still found at Ye'yumnuts. Cowichan Tribes Lands Department Website