Native Village 
Youth and Education News

September 2013

Tribal Colleges Demonstrate Winning Strategies for Prosperity in Indian Country
American Indian College Fund Press Release
Condensed by Native Village

The American Indian College Fund has named the winners of the Tribal College Leaders in Community Innovation Award. Funded by the Northwest Area Foundation, the award recognizes grassroots college programs that fight poverty and build thriving Native economies. 

“Tribal colleges hold great promise not just as educational institutions, but as wellsprings of innovation “We are honored to support these five colleges in empowering their students and communities to shape a healthy, prosperous future. The insights we gain from these relationships will inform our funding approach in Indian Country and beyond.”
                          Kevin Walker, President and CEO of the Northwest Area Foundation
“We are excited to work with the tribal colleges who have developed these innovative programs to help effect change in their communities. Through the financial support of the Northwest Area Foundation, we look forward to taking these programs to the next level, encouraging philanthropic investment in these programs that can benefit Indian Country and communities beyond.
                   Dr. Cheryl Crazy Bull, President and CEO of the American Indian College Fund 

The 5 Tribal College Winners are:

Sitting Bull College
Native Community Development Program
Standing Rock Indian Reservation --
Fort Yates, N.D.
Award: $175,000

Sitting Bull College's Native Community Development Program focuses on reducing poverty and developing the economies of Native communities.  It offers Native perspectives on leadership, cohesion, and capacity while addressing issues that keep Native communities from reaching their full potential.

NCDP's focus is on gathering resources through asset mapping, capital development, and empowering community members in a holistic approach based upon Native understanding of inter-connectedness.

Stone Child College

Stone Child College
Rural Health Initiative
Rocky Boy Indian Reservation -- Box Elder, Montana
Award: $175,000

 Stone Child College's Rural Health Initiative offers culturally competent health education for Chippewa-Cree tribal community members on Rocky Boy. Rural Health Initiative offers seminars, public presentations, and media campaigns to that address health issues impacting the Native community. These include diabetes, obesity, heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, influenza, pneumonia, cancer, suicide, mental health issues, and substance abuse.

Leech Lake Tribal College
Wellness Center
Leech Lake Indian Reservation -- Cass Lake, Minnesota
ward: $125,000

Leech Lake Tribal College Wellness Center  provides educational programs and activities to the campus and community. These include parenting skills, free child care, counseling sessions, talking circles with community elders, family planning, infant and child supplies, nutrition and healthy cooking classes, drug abuse prevention, a lactation and infant feeding room, a fitness room, a walking and running path cleared by volunteers, and a “Dress for Success” clothing program

Laptops are provided for students who attend at least six Wellness Center Programs and maintained a high GPA.

LLTCWC also plans to make the campus smoke-free by fall of 2014.

Oglala Lakota College
Oyate Kici Kaga Building for the People Program
Pine Ridge Indian Reservation -- Kyle, South Dakota
Award: $125,000

Oyate Kici Kaga Building for the People Program is an educational and public service partnership between the college, the K-12 schools, and the Oglala Sioux (Lakota) Housing Authority.

Construction trades students serve as educational apprentices. They help build safe houses on the reservation for children displaced by abuse, neglect, violence, or other issues. The Housing Authority then moves each safe house to its site and provides things such as basement, sewer and water utilities. The K-12 schools operate the facilities.

Students in Oyate Kici Kaga also renovated the Senior Center in the Porcupine Community.

 OLC partnered with the University of Colorado, South Dakota School of Mines, and Thunder Valley Community Development Group for The Native American Housing Initiative. They are building four energy-efficient and easily maintained demonstration homes. Construction trades students are doing the majority of the work.

Northwest Indian College
Traditional Plants and Foods Program
Lummi Indian Reservation -- Bellingham, Washington
Award: $125,000

Traditional Plants and Foods Program is a long-term wellness program that recognizes the therapeutic value of traditional foods, medicines, and lifestyles. The program teaches Native people about foods nutrition, culinary arts, gardening, herbal medicine, and more.

TPFP uses community-based research to help people re-adopt healthy food behaviors and embrace healthier, traditional lifestyles. It also assesses community food assets and availability to improve food security and tribal food sovereignty.

The program also offers train-the-trainer workshops, gatherings to share knowledge and resources, harvesting activities,  traditional plants information, creating a pea patch garden, herbal medicine-making, and more.

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