Empowerment for Indigenous Communities

MMIW art by 4th grader Josephine H. of Red Cloud School

May 5th is Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women’s Day

There are many disparities that exist in the justice system. Recently, Abigail Echo-Hawk, Chief Research Officer for the Seattle Indian Health Board, a Federally Qualified Health Center serving American Indians and Alaska Natives in Washington state, revealed that data and statistics were not being effectively collected or examined on Native women and girls that had gone missing or were murdered. The National Indigenous Resource Center published a toolkit on their website for relatives who go missing. As this is an ongoing problem within tribal communities that extends to Indigenous children, it is important to continue bringing awareness to the MMIWG cause.

May 6th is Billy Mills Day

Billy Mills, who is Oglala Lakota from Pine Ridge, is honored each May 6 in Indian Country and beyond. He is an Olympic gold medalist, motivational speaker, and screenwriter of the movie “Running Brave.” According to IndianYouth.org, “Billy Mills was honored for his lifetime achievements with a proclamation by South Dakota Governor Dennis Daugaard designating May 6th as Billy Mills Day, and with resolutions passed by both the House and Senate.” Give Billy another round of applause on May 6 for empowering Native American communities everywhere. The Olympic gold medalist started Dreamstarter, which grants $10k to ten Native youth and the non-profit of their choice to start projects of meaningful change in their tribal communities.

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