American Indian Heritage Month: Celebrating Native Culture, Honoring Native History
Today, we recognize the beginning of American Indian Heritage Month, and encourage you to join us in our reflection of the culture and history of the Native American tribes that first inhabited our country. The contributions and cultural impact of Native Americans is significant and diverse, with 567 federally recognized Indian tribes, reservations and pueblos in more than 30 states, nearly 35 state-recognized tribes, and many other tribes now petitioning for federal or state recognition.
Partnership With Native Americans (PWNA) is committed to championing hope for a brighter future for Native Americans, and proud to be celebrating Native culture, honoring Native history and exploring everyday realities of life on the reservations. According to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, the basic standard of living for many Native Americans remains well below the rest of the U.S. and the disparities some communities face are startling in 21st century America. That is why remembrance and aid to such communities is so vital to their well-being.
Throughout American Indian Heritage Month, we invite you to expand your knowledge and appreciation through stories on Native culture, history, heritage and wisdom by visiting www.PWNA4hope.org. There, we will be posting curated articles on the first Thanksgiving, as well as what happened after that fateful interaction, and stories featuring some of the Native Elders we serve.
On Nov. 3, go to www.PWNA4hope.org to hear from Ben Good Buffalo, a resident and citizen of the Oglala Sioux Tribe in southwestern South Dakota. On Nov. 10, we’ll share the stories of Dorothy Smith and Helen Phillips, patrons of the San Carlos Older Adult Center in south central Arizona. On Nov. 22, read about Sara Fills the Pipe, her thoughts on Thanksgiving and her time spent with friends at the Oglala Elderly Meal Center on the Pine Ridge Reservation.
If you’re inspired by the stories you read, we encourage you to honor American Indian Heritage month by making a contribution today. In addition to providing Thanksgiving meals for thousands of Native Americans each November, PWNA provides immediate support year-round in education, nutrition and health, animal welfare, and emergency relief, and supports long-term solutions such as scholarships, training for emerging leaders and community investment projects to help end the cycle of poverty. Our staff collaborates with existing reservation-based programs to deliver goods and services based on the tribes’ self-identified goals and solutions for building their communities – an approach that has proven to be culturally relevant, respectful and effective.