What's New In the Community: February 2014
Friday, February 07 2014
Written by The Circle Staff,
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CALLAWAY, Minn. – Honor the Earth, in collaboration with the Headwaters Fund, the Indigo Girls, Medicine for the People and a number of individual and institutional donors, announce grants of $120,000 to Indigenous grassroots organizations across North America. In this grant cycle, Honor the Earth has been able to support organizations working in restorative agriculture, honoring traditional cultural practices, protection of sacred sites and in opposition to destruction of water, land and life.

Organizations include: Hopi Tutskwa Permaculture, on the Hopi reservation, for working in restorative agriculture and to initiate hands-on learning projects and hosts workshops that support Hopi youth and community to develop skills and capacity in rebuilding sustainable communities.

The Horse Spirit Society, supported for their organizing against the Keystone XL, and water healing with regards to uranium mining in the Black Hills. The grant also went towards support for the Big Foot Memorial Ride, an educational and spiritual reaffirmation of Lakota history, culture and commitment to future generations.

Honor the Earth was able, through the Fall Indigo Girls Benefit concerts in Minneapolis, Madison, Wis. and Bayfield, Wis., to provide funds to support a number of grassroots and tribal governments in the region, particularly the Bad River Legal Defense Fund, for the Bad River Chippewa working to defend the watershed from the GTAC Taconite mining proposal; and Ron Plain, an Anjiwaning Anishinaabe man who was involved in Idle No More blockades and works to draw attention to the chemical contamination of his first nation – surrounded by 63 chemical companies and creating toxic contamination of Anishinaabe people.

As well, Honor the Earth was able to support the Idle No More movement in Canada and the Mi’qmag nation in the Maritime Provinces in their opposition to the fracking of their territory by Southwest Resources.

The 2013 Fall-cycle grants are being allocated to a number of organizations including: Cheyenne River Youth Project: Winyan Toka Win (Leading Lady) Garden; Dakota Resource Council: This Is Mandare; Earth Lodge Movement; Fort Berthold Community College: Honoring the Bottomlands; Hopi Tutskwa Permaculture; Horse Spirit Society: Big Foot Memorial Ride; Idle No More Campaign of the Polaris Institute; Indigenous Tar Sands Campaign of the Polaris Institute; Medicine Wheel/ Yellowbird; Metis Horticulture & Heritage Society: Foundations for a Regional Seed Library; Native American Educational Technologies: Harvest Educational Learning Project (HELP); Nez Perce Tribe Water Resources Division: Solar for Sustainability; Owe Aku: Moccasins on the Ground Tour of Resistance; Ponca Youth Mentorship & Garden Project; Pooenadu Organic Farms; Prairie Dust Films (LLC): Crying Earth Rise Up; Bad River Tribal Legal Defense and the Penokee Hills Education Project; Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa: Mino Bimaadizwin Farm Expansion; Rio Grande Community Development Corporation: Southwest Uranium Mining; T’sou-ke First Nation: Wui,cist,Cen,tol; To Lani Enterprises, Inc.: Revitalizing Local Navajo Corn Production Markets and Traditions; Waikiki Hawaiian Civic Club & Ahahui Siwila Sawaii – Kapolei – Pupuhi Kukui – Malino Ke Kai; Western Energy Justice Project; White Earth Land Recovery Project.

For more information about Honor the Earth and our upcoming environmental justice and Indigenous economics advocacy, visit , email This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it , or call 218-375-3200.


EAGAN, Minn. – The Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota Center for Prevention selected the Indian Health Board of Minneapolis for $25,000 in Community Engagement Innovation funding. According to IHB, this financial support will be used to host World Cafe community conversations with people about local, urban farming and food issues.

“We are very pleased that the Center for Prevention has decided to support our initiative,” IHB Program Manager Lannesse Bakers said. “This funding will help support our efforts to ensure that community members are helping to design and drive strategies that will promote urban farming and healthy food in our community.”

Engaged and involved community members are a key component to creating a healthier Minnesota. In recognition of this, the Center awarded funding to 18 projects that will be shaped through community input and participation. The funds, which total nearly $450,000, will be used to help organizations engage community members in authentic and culturally relevant ways.

“People matter when it comes to creating community change,” Center director Janelle Waldock said. “We know that efforts to change community health are more sustainable and successful when the people who are most impacted by the change are involved in the process.”

Information on each program and its accomplishments will be updated periodically on Additional information on the Indian Health Board of Minneapolis initiate can also be found at


MINNEAPOLIS – The Tiwahe Foundation Board of Directors and Seventh Generation Endowment Committee is pleased to announce McKnight Foundation’s $400,000 investment in American Indian philanthropy. This grant will support grant-making, operations and represents the largest gift for our endowment campaign. The $300,000 will be leveraged as a two-to-one endowment matching grant for our $6 million endowment campaign.

"Campaigns like ours do well when they receive stimulus from matching dollars to move us toward our goal,” Seventh Generation Endowment Chair Laura Waterman Wittstock said. “Tiwahe made good beginnings because funders like the McKnight Foundation saw the value we will bring to the community, one that goes beyond funding alone. We are grateful for such belief in the Tiwahe mission."

The Seventh Generation Endowment Campaign will secure the grant-making of our American Indian Family Empowerment Program Fund, ensure operating support, leadership development programming and organizational development and capacity building. Tiwahe’s AIFEP fund has a solid track record of grant-making success with over 600 grants totaling more than $1 million have been awarded to individuals and families.

The Foundation envisions itself as a culturally knowledgeable philanthropic leader serving as a national model for Native philanthropy and self-determination. With the support of the community we will increase philanthropic resources, leadership and capacity for American Indians in Minnesota.

“We are making a long-term investment in the American Indian community,” Neal Cuthbert, Vice President of Program at the McKnight Foundation said. “Building a grassroots foundation that is led, managed and directed by American Indians with a focus on strengthening leadership through grantmaking to individuals is groundbreaking work. We are proud to provide lead funds for the endowment and support the capacity building efforts of Tiwahe.”

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