2020 Digital Storytelling Contest, Interactive, Outstanding Multimedia Journey

River of Forgiveness


Helios Design Labs

River of Forgiveness follows the story of the Dehcho Dené people in their indigenous territory in Canada’s remote Northwest Territories. In 2018, twelve Dené ventured into this wild landscape to re-engage with a way of life at risk of being lost. Together they undertook the construction of a 40-foot moose skin boat to travel down the South Nahanni River on an epic 500 kilometer journey through sacred land. River of Forgiveness seamlessly blends together a variety of audiovisual elements to bring the viewer with them as they head downstream on this remarkable journey. It is an immersive tribute to the spiritual power of nature to heal and Dené resilience, rising from the ashes of colonialism.

Production team

    Helios Design Labs

    Creative Director/Writer/Editor: Alex Wittholz

    Producer/Writer/Editor: Heather Grieve

    Lead Developer: Daniel Sundy

    Developer: Jen Saxena

    Developer: Mike Mali

    Illustrator: Jamie Bennett

    The River of Forgiveness Project

    Film Director/Producer: Geoff Bowie

    Film Producer: Michael Allder

    Creative and Story Consultant: Herb Norwegian

    Photographer: John Bingham

    Director of Photography: Kiarash Sadigh

    Additional Videography: Jonathan Antoine

    Co-Executive Producer 90th Parallel: Gordon Henderson

    Co-Executive Producer CBC Documentary Channel: Jordana Ross

    Co-Executive Producer CBC Documentary Channel: Sandra Kleinfeld