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Our Creation Story

Written by the Founder of Strawberry Medicine Counselling, Stephanie Erickson.

'indzi yoo (Dakelh-Nak'azdli Dialect) 

ᐧᐉᐣᙌ ᘎ

Robin Wall Kimmerer's Braiding Sweetgrass shared the Creation Story of the Heart Berry and the revelation that came to me hit me like a bell of truth ringing within my heart:

"In our Creation stories, the origin of strawberries is important. Skywoman's beautiful daughter, whom she carried in her womb from Skyworld, grew on the good green earth, loving and loved by all the other beings. But tragedy befell her when she died giving birth to her twins, Flint and Sapling. Heartbroken, Skywoman buried her beloved daughter in the earth. Her final gifts, our most revered plants, grew from her body. The strawberry arose from her heart. In Potawatomi, the strawberry is ode min, the heart berry. We recognize them as the leaders of the berries, the first to bear fruit."

It was this passage that became the medicine my heart so desperately needed, the final medicine to my bundle for my wholehearted healing ceremony. My intuition told me that the strawberry was given to the people because Skywoman's daughter did not want the negativity that can come from grief to be left on Earth after she returned to the spirit world. The strawberry grew from her heart as medicine for the people to strengthen their hearts. To become stronger and more capable of loving unconditionally and living life whole-heartedly, from a place of worthiness. This strength gave Skywoman the strength to raise her grandbabies and they would live in a world of love, rather than sorrow and despair. So that Skywoman's babies would be loved unconditionally, just as children deserve to be loved.

It was with this knowledge that I did a ceremony on the Flower Full Moon to plant a strawberry patch for healing. 

The ceremony of creating a strawberry garden was blessed with prayers for anyone who eats from it to grow stronger in their heart.

It is with this understanding that I bring this medicine to the people. My motivation is to continue to serve those in need of connection and balance.


Strawberry Medicine Counselling grounds itself within these teachings as Indigenous Clinical Counselling in BC. 

All My Relations


Vanessa Carpenter

I am from the Wet'suwet'en First Nation located in Witset, BC, and I belong to the Laksillyu (small frog) clan. I am the Clinical Supervisor for Strawberry Medicine Counselling and I have been working with children, youth, and families in a counselling role since 2004. I provide a person-centred strength-based holistic approach. I believe everyone has the resources within, sometimes the resources need to be explored through connection.  All My Relations.

Vanessa is currently accepting new clients and offers Clinical Supervision to Mental Health Professionals. 

Registered Clinical Counsellor #16013

Clinical Supervisor | Indigenous Mental Health Clinician

Ama Sqit (Good day), my traditional name is Kakeeka and I am St’at’imc and Ojibway. I am a; mother, daughter, sister, auntie, cousin, niece, friend, and an Indigenous Mental Heath Clinician. 

Focusing on holistic health, I strive to embed traditional ways of being and knowing with western knowledge systems to support and walk alongside those on their healing journeys. With a heavy focus on the therapeutic relationship, my foundations are in person-centered therapy, however other modalities and techniques may be helpful and incorporated, such as solution-focused therapy and narrative therapy. Working in partnerships with my clients, we focus on finding and maintaining balance, while working towards healing and growth.


Sara is currently accepting new clients.


Sara French

Indigenous Mental Health Clinician,

M.A, C.C.C

DG Photo.png

Deanna Gestrin

Registered Clinical Counsellor #21626

Indigenous Mental Health Clinician

Kalhwá7aľap (hello). I am a member of the Xaxli’p First Nation in the St’at’imc territory. I hold a Bachelor of Music degree, Bachelor of Education degree, Master of Counselling degree, and I am a registered clinical counsellor with the British Columbia Association of Clinical Counsellors. Registration #21626.

I offer counselling that is holistic, offered from an Indigenous perspective that is strength-based, person-centered and community-focused. My background in education and community service work has contributed to a diverse skill set that supports a range of individual and group challenges: anxiety, depression, addiction, grief, gender, sexuality, trauma, and relationship concerns. Traditional healing practices (for example, hand drumming, community-focused healing, connecting to ancestral wisdom), in addition to modern therapeutic techniques help to uncover the courage that resides within.

Harm caused by colonization has long-standing impacts on Indigenous people, however, we all hold gifts that when discovered (or uncovered) have the ability to nourish our root system and help us heal from past and current challenges. By entering into ceremony together in a trauma-informed respectful way,
we can work together to develop insight, skills, and holistic balance.

Hadih I am Stephanie Erickson from the Lusilyoo Clan of Tl'azt'en Nation. I am an intuitive, a healer, and humble companion to those on their healing path. 

As the founder of Strawberry Medicine Counselling, I aim to create a safe and trusting space within the body to call back your spirit. It is through this process that we can begin to live life wholeheartedly. 

My work as a Counsellor braids together my Clinical Counselling training along with ceremony and Indigenous ways of healing and being to create a medicine bundle I offer to all who seek balance and connection.


Client centered therapy with me is experienced when I can engage with you in the present moment and become the hollow bone for your ancestors to work through me to bring forth the healing you need on your journey.  This can include the use of my drum, turtle rattle, and many medicines but also includes ceremonial ribbon skirt making with cord cuttings, reclaimation of power, and full embodiment of your authentic self.

Stephanie is currently accepting new clients.

Stephanie Erickson

Northern District Clinical Director | Indigenous Mental Health Clinician

Registered Clinical Counsellor #18356
Canadian Certified Counsellor #10008505


Nathan Greyghost

Practicum Student

way' xast skelxelt, iskwist Nathan kn tl westbank. Hello and good day, my name is Nathan Greyghost. I am a come from the unceded lands of the syilx territory and a member of Westbank First Nation located in Kelowna. I am a practicum student from Yorkville university and I'm excited to work with the team here at Strawberry Medicine. 


My style of therapy is based on a forming an egalitarian relationship that focuses on the physical, emotional, spiritual, and intellectual aspects of each person. We are all unique in our day to day lives and yet remain connected to each other by our experiences, our thoughts, our cultures, and our paths forward. I believe that creating and maintaining continuous relationships with our communities can help heal the pain we experience by utilizing our shared events to better understand one another.

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