Travel & Culture

Celebrating Indigenous Visionary Voices With A Captivating Content Creator

June 21, 2023

June is National Indigenous History Month, a time for Canadians to recognize and celebrate the rich history and contributions of First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples across the country. This year, the TikTok Indigenous Visionary Voices List recognizes visionary creatives, business owners and industry disruptors who are using TikTok to educate, entertain and advocate for the Indigenous community, on and off the platform. We chatted with one on the #IndigenousTikTok Visionary Voices List, Mallory Yawnghwe of Indigenous Box Inc., to learn more. —Vita Daily

Please tell us a bit about yourself to start (first/last names, pronouns, some personal background/details, etc.)!

My name Mallory Yawnghwe (She/Her). I come from Saddle Lake Cree Nation #125 in Treaty Six Territory. I’m the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Indigenous Box Inc. I have a bachelor’s degree in commerce with a specialization in Supply Chain Management from MacEwan University and also hold the SCMP professional designation. My passion, drive, integrity, and commitment to life-long learning have helped me catapult Indigenous Box from a $5000 seed investment into a multi-million-dollar company in less than two years. I’m not planning to slow down anytime soon. I see it as my mission to tell the world about the rapid resurgence of indigenous businesses and to make room for those that will come after.

How did you achieve (and continue to grow) your TikTok audience?

I am lucky to have followers that are a lot like me. I feel a deep connection with them as they are primarily women interested in making the world a better place – I truly believe that’s the key. I just try my best to share as much as possible about the philosophy behind Indigenous Box and make content I would enjoy.

What do you like about TikTok as a platform, especially in terms of how you can use it to influence and inspire those that follow you, and to create social change?

The format encourages me to distill what I want to say as much as possible. The short-form content really gives a snapshot of what we are about and what we are like as a business. I believe we have a very positive and forward-thinking philosophy, and I am grateful that my followers are excited to join us on our mission to champion Indigenous Business.

What topics do you cover/share most? Where do your passions lie?
Have you ever had to deal with haters/naysayers on social media? If so, what’s your approach?

I really like to base my content on the lessons I have learned from my community and especially from my parents and grandparents. The more I think about their teachings, the more I understand why we choose to do business the way we do and share the content we share. I am passionate about community and family building through entrepreneurship and commerce. Indigenous Box is my way to strengthen relationships between Indigenous Peoples across Turtle Island and re-build what I call the ‘Original Supply Chains’ that were here before colonization. I do deal with negativity on social media. The racism that Indigenous people encounter regularly is genuine. I personally don’t engage with this type of behaviour aside from blocking offenders. I choose not to spend my energy trying to convince people not to be racists. I recently published a blog about how I have learned to deal with lateral violence. It can be read here:

What have some of the highlights of being so prominent on TikTok been for you?

A major highlight is the positive response we get from the community. We know we are creating an impact when our customers also become champions of Indigenous business. Another significant highlight is that TikTok has allowed us to showcase a brand that enables Indigenous kids to see themselves represented in modern commerce. It is a platform where brand awareness invites those kids to dream big.

June is National Indigenous History Month; what is the significance to you, and how are you using your voice to create change, establish community and help people in your community (and others) feel seen and understood?

I always try to use my voice to share in the beauty and creativity of Indigenous makers, especially during National History month. June is also the Summer Solstice, which is an important time of change and renewal for many Indigenous peoples. We honour this month by enjoying the ceremony, taking time to rest, and setting our intentions for the new year full of growth and change. It is a time to celebrate who we are; diverse, multi-dimensional people from many nations and communities who are rooted in tradition while championing one another in modern commerce.

With so many people following you on TikTok, who are some of your favourite accounts to follow?

Honestly, I joined TikTok because of my teenager and of course I love watching her videos but I’m her mom and I would say that!

  • @kamrynyawnghwe
  • Shawnee Kish, Singer @shawneekish
  • Kairyn Potts, @ohkairyn
  • Dallas Goldtooth, Actor @dallasgoldtooth
  • Connor Curran, Local Laundry @connorbcurran
  • Tiny Nguyen, XXL Scrunchie @xxl.scrunchie
  • Tastely Box @tastelybox (favourite fun to watch with my daughter)
  • @angelarhowe (best fashion channel)


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