Strengthening Native American Communities & Economies
We are often asked what impact we are having in Native communities. We can provide statistics, reports and formal findings, of course, but sometimes the words of our grantees speak loudest. Here are some of their stories taken from our Indian Giver newsletter.
TahNibaa Naataanii of the Navajo Nation lives on the land where her family has raised sheep as part of their traditional life and culture for hundreds of years. Just south of Shiprock, New Mexico, and the Four Corners area, about half an hour away, is Table Mesa. That’s where you'll find Naataanii tending to her sheep. She takes pride in being able to raise her Navajo churro sheep and use the wool in both traditional and new ways to provide a living for her and her daughter ... Read the full story here.
In Santa Rosa, California, Indian culture is being cultivated and shared, thanks to the business savvy of a new generation, and a project with the motto “Selling education and creating opportunity.” Teens at the California Indian Museum and Cultural Center are taking part in Tribal Ambassadors Through Business, an initiative that teaches young people business skills through both online courses and the opportunity to open and run a museum store, showcasing and selling Native arts and crafts. Read the full story here.
In Igiugig, a small village of only 69 people on the Kvichak River in southwestern Alaska, resources are scarce. Food must be flown in, and strategies to keep the village – and the culture of the Yup’ik Eskimos, Aleuts, and Athabascan Indians – flourishing must be seized. Here, with the support of First Nations Development Institute, this close-knit tribe is finding new ways to develop sustainable food sources, and creating opportunities for young people to succeed. Read the full story here.
A resource for fishers and a respect for salmon have been at the heart of the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission (CRITFC) in Portland, Oregon, for close to 40 years. Formed by the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation of Oregon, the Confederated Tribes and Bands of the Yakama Nation and the Nez Perce Tribe, CRITFC provides a unified voice in managing fishery resources and exercising the inherent sovereign powers of the tribes. Read the full story here.
Something amazing is happening in Waimea, Hawaii. Native Hawaiians are returning to farming, and driving long-term change for society. Families are coming together, and children are being raised in a culture people take pride in. It’s all part of a vision of Mike Hodson, president of the Waimea Hawaiian Homesteaders’ Association. Read the full story here.
“If we didn’t have our culture, we wouldn’t be a pueblo. We would just be another town.” This is why the Pueblo of Nambé in New Mexico is ingraining its rich heritage in every crop, and growing pride with every harvest. “It’s an investment in not only food sovereignty, but in the future of our people,” said Nambé Farm Manager George Toya. Read the full story here.
The people of the Oceti Sakowin Oyate are undergoing a revolution. After surviving generations of colonization, the Lakota, Dakota and Nakota people are rising up from the weight of colonial legacies and building upon the work of their Indigenous ancestors to create a brighter future. On the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, home to the Oglala Lakota, the Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation is helping lead this transformation. Read the full story here.
In Cochiti Pueblo, New Mexico, young people are returning to farming and reigniting a passion for their Pueblo ancestry. Thanks to the Cochiti Youth Experience, they are embracing quality food and what it means to their culture, sustainability and future. Read the full story here.
In Zuni, New Mexico, Zuni children and teens are getting opportunities to explore their heritage, an experience that is increasing their self-esteem and helping them see new opportunities for the future. Read the full story here.