Washington, DC—“Not only did I get to see and hear his powerful message to Indian country and shake his hand but I got a selfie with President (Barack) Obama,” wrote Brian Weeden, 21, Mashpee Wampanoag, on his Facebook page shortly after he and Sarah Scott, 20, Lummi, shook hands with President Barack Obama last week during the Sixth White House Tribal Nations Conference (WHTNC) in Washington, DC. Weeden and Scott serve as Co-Presidents of the National UNITY Council. UNITY stands for United National Indian Tribal Youth. The purpose of the annual WHTNC is to foster the relationship between the United States Government and American Indian and Alaska Native tribes.
The following story was published on the act.mtv.com website on November 26, 2014.
How Do Native Americans Really Feel About Thanksgiving?
We’ve all heard the story of the first Thanksgiving, but how much of what we’ve been told is true and how much of it has turned to legend over the years? And while the original Thanksgiving is supposed to be about a meal between the Pilgrims and the Wampanoags, Thanksgiving now rarely puts any attention on the Native Americans involved or how Natives view Thanksgiving today.
To get a Native perspective, I spoke with Brian Moskwetah Weeden, a member of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe. He is the Male Co-President of the United National Indian Tribal Youth (UNITY), a member of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribes Enrollment Committee and Youth Advisory Committee and a Chairman to the 2014 Pow Wow Committee.
For starters, he was able to clear up some myths about the first Thanksgiving...
Read the rest of the story HERE.
What is #GIVINGTUESDAY?
We have a day for giving thanks. We have two for getting deals. Now, we have #GivingTuesday, a global day dedicated to giving back. On Tuesday, December 2, 2014, charities, families, businesses, community centers, and students around the world will come together for one common purpose: to celebrate generosity and to give.
Support UNITY and be a part of a global celebration of a new tradition of generosity.
Kelly Charley was featured in the Fall 2014 issue of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) Winds of Change magazine. You may read the story online HERE. Also, on page 11 of the same issue, there is a sidebar story about Kelly being honored as a member of the inaugural class of UNITY's 25 Under 25 program.
Much of Kelly Charley's life has been spent with her grandparents in Sweetwater, Ariz., a small town in a rural area. Working with their farm animals made her curious about why things are the way they are. The natural world is full of mystery, Charley discovered, but science has come up with a wealth of explanations. Her mother majored in chemistry, and mother's interest became Charley's interests. Charley learned a great deal just from working on her grandparents' property. She was always interested in trying new things and understanding more.
Read the rest of the story in the online Winds of Change magazine.
Leslie Locklear, Lumbee, and a UNITY 25 Under 25 Honoree, is putting her Action Planning training into practice as she spearheads three service projects. Locklear is a doctoral student at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro with a focus on Educational Studies and Cultural Foundations. She recently served as a peer leader at the “Today Native Leaders” Training in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
Her three projects include a Healing Circle for inter-generational women, college prep workshops and higher education workshops. “The first healing circle will be held in December with inter-generational women in the One Spirit Dance Group in Guilford County, North Carolina. Within the North Carolina tribal community the women of the Waccamaw Siouan tribe came together to host healing circles as a way to not only support each other but to support the entire tribal community. These women met monthly to share their time, love and support with each other and celebrate their own strength and happiness while also opening their hearts and sharing each others struggles. I want to conduct similar circles in my community with the local women in order to join us together as Native women in a more urban environment,” said Locklear.