Grant-Making: The Native Communities Program
From remote villages in the Arctic across the prairies of the Dakotas to the mountains of the northeast, Native communities are struggling to protect land, water, ecosystems and ways of life through forward thinking initiatives grounded in indigenous wisdom. The success of Native peoples to heal and strengthen our communities remains invisible to mainstream American society.
Native grassroots groups remain on the front lines of environmental protection in America – mitigating climate change, restoring biodiversity and bringing back local food economies – but this work remains unseen and either unfunded or under-funded. Today, only .05 of 1% of philanthropy in America goes to Native groups, and the majority of that funding is directed to non-Native organizations working on Native issues.
To address disparities in philanthropy and infuse increased resources into Native environmental work, Honor the Earth, with the Tides Foundation, created the first and only grant-making partnership between a Native organization and a national charitable institution: the Native Communities Program. Joining in this collaborative are a set of partnering foundations, including Solidago Foundation, Hill-Snowdon Foundation, Frances Fund and Kalliopeia Foundation.
The Native Communities Program is rooted in two key principles:
• Decisions about funding in Indian Country need to be made by Native peoples. We remain committed to promoting a model that offers funders and donors a meaningful way to participate in Native-directed grant-making.
• Indigenous wisdom is a powerful tool to create enduring, systemic change and must be recognized as a legitimate and strategic component of Native organizing models.
We are collaborating with Kalliopeia Foundation and Frances Fund on a grant-making initiative entitled Building Resilience in Indigenous Communities. This initiative focuses on re-localizing sustainable energy and food economies as a means to mitigate climate change and nurture cultural and spiritual restoration. Check out our Winter 2010 grantees here!
**Extended- Our Next Funding Deadline is November 9th, 2012.