This Week at First Nations: August 19, 2022

California Land Access Webinar #2: Join Us September 1!

In this second webinar in our series to support access to ancestral lands for California tribes and tribally controlled nonprofit organizations, presenters explore how to identify and develop a tribe’s or tribal nonprofit organization’s vision and desired outcomes related to access to ancestral land and how to choose the best entity structure to help achieve them. Two case studies will be presented highlighting the Mendocino County-based tribally chartered non profit organization, Kai Poma, and the Los Angeles County-based, Tataviam Land Conservancy.

The webinar is Thursday, September 1, 2022, at 11 am PT/12 pm MT. Learn more and register here.

New Report: Strengthening Native Food Systems Through Improved Food Storage

The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated food system issues throughout Indian Country. To strengthen Native food systems, in fall 2021, First Nations awarded 14 Northern Great Plains Food Storage Grants to support Native food pantries in improving food storage efforts. This new First Nations report summarizes key findings and best practices in food storage based on qualitative interviews with First Nations’ community partners, and provides a literature review of traditional food storage methods of Indigenous peoples in North America. Download the report here.

First Nations Staff Share Native Perspectives at the NMSU Food Systems Summit

In June, Leiloni Begaye and Ethan Gallegos, program officers for First Nations’ Nourishing Native Foods & Health, shared insights at the New Mexico State University Food Systems Summit, which brought together stakeholders from various sectors of the food network. In their stakeholder group, Leiloni and Ethan contributed to a shared vision statement for a resilient food system – one that “will honor nature, through observation, mentorship, and tradition to nurture meaningful stewardship that meets the needs of all entities within the local ecosystem, where shared knowledge inspires a culture of love, passion, and intentionality for agriculture.” Leiloni also presented a short demonstration of blue corn and its importance to Indigenous communities. Great job, Leiloni and Ethan!

Share Your Story of First Nations

GreatNonprofits – known as the #1 source of nonprofit stories and feedback – is honoring highly regarded nonprofits with their 2022 Top-Rated List. Being included on this list would help First Nations amplify our programs and raise visibility about the great work being done by our community partners. To make the list, we are asking grantees, donors, and supporters to post a brief story of their experience with us. It’s easy and only takes three minutes. Please go here to get started. We value your input!

Become a Training and Technical Assistance Consultant for First Nations

First Nations is expanding our pool of consultants, and we welcome professional consultants to share their skills and expertise. First Nations’ consultants provide trainings and technical assistance to help strengthen the capacity and ingenuity of Native communities and support their economic futures in ways that fit their cultures. Fill out the form and submit your information here.

What We’re Listening To: The Makoce Podcast

Long-time First Nations’ colleague Nick Hernandez is a member of the Oglala Sioux Tribe and a citizen of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. As founder and president of First Nations community partner Makoce Agriculture Development, Nick launched The Makoce Podcast, a community voice for sharing systemic solutions and strategies toward reconnecting and regenerating local food systems across the Oceti Sakowin Nation and Turtle Island. In the latest episode, bison producers Ron and Carol Brown Otter share their approach to bison transportation. Access the podcasts here.

First Nations’ Luce Fellow Curates Native American Exhibit

Earth, Sky and Everything in Between, an exhibit of Contemporary Native American Art is on view through October 10, 2022, at the Middletown Art Center in Middletown, California. The exhibit was curated by First Nations’ 2020 Luce Indigenous Knowledge Fellow Corine Pearce, marking the first time in Lake County that a Native American has curated a Native art exhibit by Native Americans. Pearce said the show is a culmination of a year-long project that involved teaching basketmaking to Native and non-Native people as a way to build cultural bridges. See the exhibit in person, or take the interactive 3D tour. Congratulations, Corine!

Winnemem Wintu Tribe Sees Return of Salmon to McCloud River

First Nations is happy to celebrate the Winnemem Wintu Tribe in California and the return of winter-run Chinook salmon eggs to the McCloud River, and the good news it means for the salmon population, which has been depleted since the construction of the Shasta Dam. Chico News & Review reports the tribe helped install a Remote Incubation System, which Winnemem and other children used to place 20,000 salmon eggs back in the river, where they haven’t been seen for over 80 years. Watch the ceremony video here.

The Indian Cultural Center is the tribal nonprofit of the Winnemem Wintu Tribe and a First Nations community partner through our California Tribal Fund.

Photo credit Chico News & Review, Brandon S. Honig, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Reminder: Tune in for “A New Road to Funding Racial Justice and Equity”

You’re invited to join First Nations’ Mike Roberts and other leaders for a conversation on building powerful, resilient nonprofits that advance racial justice and equity in the U.S. today. Hosted by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and the Fidelity Charitable Trustees’ Initiative, this webinar discussion will explore how funders currently approach Latinx, African American, and Native American communities, and how to advance philanthropy in each one.

The webinar is September 13, 2022, at 10 am MT. Learn more and register.

Haskell Indian Nations University Wins $20M Award for Indigenous Science Hub Project

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded a five-year $20 million grant to Haskell Indian Nations University to create a knowledge hub for Indigenous knowledge-holders from coastal regions to collaborate with scientists and students on climate change. As reported in The Lawrence Times, it is the largest research award ever granted by the NSF to a tribal college or university.

Prairie Band Potawatomi Take Historic Step Toward Reclaiming Land

As reported in ICT (formerly Indian Country Today), proposed federal legislation would allow the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation to acquire more than 1,100 acres of land in north-central Illinois illegally taken by the U.S. government in 1849. “Today is a historic day – it marks the most progress we’ve had in our century-and-a-half pursuit to reclaim our land,” said Potawatomi Chairman Joseph Rupnick. The filed bill also would provide $10 million to the tribe as repayment for the illegal sale.

Photo credit ICT by Amelia Schafer

Empower Native youth by donating to our Native Youth and Culture Fund summer campaign! Deadline extended: The first $150,000 in donations made by August 31, 2022, will be matched dollar for dollar.