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EMPOWERING THE LIVES OF NATIVE AMERICANS IN THE PORTLAND AREA

SPRING 2017

LEADERSHIP AND OPPORTUNITY 1. NAYA is proud of our youth completing the school year at the NAYA Early College Academy. CONGRATULATIONS to the Class of 2017! (page 7) 2. NAYA’s Neerchokikoo Powwow will be held on Saturday, September 9, 12pm - 10pm. All are invited to enjoy a day of tradition and culture. Dancing, drumming, and a showcase of wares from local artisans will celebrate Portland’s Native American community. 3. Spring Break Camps were a big hit again this year, as we #TeachCulture to our youth. (page 4) 4. Double your impact for students with a donation to provide college scholarships. (page 6) 5. After years of planning, hard work, and investments with partners, NAYA is pleased to announce that GENERATIONS is now open, creating a community for our Native foster youth and Elders. See our Facebook page for photos of the grand opening. http://bit.ly/2rVuusC 6.This year’s Early College Academy Luncheon was a huge success thanks to YOU! The proceeds of the luncheon help our youth stay culturally connected through academic studies. (page 5) 7. Local elected officials visited with Elders and Portland Indian Leaders Roundtable (PILR) at NAYA, pledging their support and advising on services available to our community. (page 7) 8. Save the Date for this year’s NAYA Gala and Auction - November 17, 2017. The evening will be a festive celebration for Native American culture, art, and community. Tell your friends and colleagues to mark their calendars for this much anticipated event. 9. NAYA held its first Legislative Day of Action in Salem. During the day, ECA students, staff and community members met with our state Representatives to advocate for bills important to our community and Indian Country. (page 7)


NATIVE AMERICAN YOUTH & FAMILY CENTER NEWSLETTER

SPRING 2017

NEW LEADERSHIP GUIDES NAYA’S MISSION

NEW AND RETURNING DIRECTORS PROVIDE LEADERSHIP FOR PORTLAND’S NATIVE COMMUNITY

(Left to right) Paul Lumley, Ann Takamoto, Tamara Henderson, Oscar Arana, Vega Tom

Last fall, new Executive Director Paul Lumley, Yakama, was welcomed by the community, board and staff to the NAYA family. Paul has extensive leadership experience, most recently as the Executive Director of the Columbia River Inter Tribal Fish Commission (CRITFC.) Paul began his tenure just as Interim Executive Director Tawna Sanchez transitioned into her new role as an Oregon State Representative. In February, Ann Takamoto was hired as NAYA’s new Director of Development. Ann brings 14 years of fundraising and communications expertise, joining after nearly ten years as Portland Audubon’s Development Director. Ann cares deeply about Native American culture and is thrilled to be working with the community, to raise awareness and resources. Tamara Henderson, Laguna Pueblo, received a well-deserved promotion to NAYA’s Director of Youth and Education Services. Tamara has been a longtime NAYA employee, managing the College & Career Center and Early College Academy. With her passion for education, Tamara has been instrumental in creating and growing opportunities for our youth and is excited to take the helm of the department. Another familiar face, Oscar Arana, returned to NAYA as Director of Community Development. Oscar has more than ten years of experience in youth education and community building, joining NAYA in 2008 as a Youth and Education Services Manager, and later in 2012 as the Development Director. Oscar is committed to the NAYA community and is glad to be back. Just completing her first year as NAYA’s Director of Finance, Vega Tom, has 13 years of non-profit accounting, finance and strategic leadership experience. Previously the Chief Operating Officer of World Pulse, a women’s empowerment organization, Vega is currently pursuing an MBA at University of Portland with a focus on finance and sustainability. NAYA’s future looks bright as Vega, Ann, Tamara and Oscar join Lisa Otero, Early College Academy Principal and Tawna Sanchez, Director of Family Services to round out Paul’s leadership team.

ENVIRONMENTAL SAFETY AT NAYA

ENVIRONMENTAL SAFETY TEAM LEADS TESTING FOR SAFE SPACES AT NAYA CAMPUS

Assuring that our campus is environmentally safe is paramount to the NAYA community. The Portland Youth and Elders Council convened a volunteerled NAYA Environmental Safety Team (NEST), a task force charged with advocating for the testing of the campus’ water, air and soil quality. We are happy to report that lead* and radon levels are far below EPA standards and that soil testing around campus grounds reveal that no cleanup is necessary. We thank the members of our NEST team for their dedication and diligence to this process. More information can be found on NAYA’s blog. 2

* save one water source which has been decommisioned


NATIVE AMERICAN YOUTH & FAMILY CENTER NEWSLETTER

SPRING 2017

PYEC RENEWS STEERING COMMITTEE

REINVIGORATING THE PYEC LEADERSHIP STRUCTURE IS AN INVESTMENT IN COMMUNITY

After rich discussions, the Portland Youth and Elders Council (PYEC) reinstated a multigenerational Steering Committee, consisting of two Elders, two Youth and two adults, to provide leadership for the group. PYEC was founded in 2004, to focus on leadership development, youth engagement, and meeting the community’s needs. This spring, during the busy budgeting process, PYEC members advocated for funding for NAYA’s programs at Portland Public School Board meetings and Multnomah County hearings. Meeting monthly, on the second Tuesday of the month, PYEC meetings are open to anyone in the community. Visit NAYA’s website to learn more about PYEC.

COMCAST VOLUNTEERS AT NAYA

COMCAST CARES DAY CELEBRATES EARTH DAY AND NATIONAL VOLUNTEER MONTH

Long time partner, Comcast, brought their team of employees to NAYA for their 16th Annual Comcast Cares day of volunteering. Over 65 volunteers, including Comcast employees and NAYA community members, helped spruce up the grounds, install additional parking, clean and organize NAYA’s Cultural Arts room and make care packages with sundries and supplies for families impacted by domestic violence. Over the past three years, Comcast employee, Jesse Lambert, has been leading the team, having a special connection to NAYA’s mission: “I love what NAYA does for the community, they bridge a lot of gaps for people. I love the partnership I feel with NAYA; Albert, Victor, Paul and Darla are truly wonderful!! I look forward to Comcast Cares Day every year because I get to bring our team to the NAYA family again. I’m already excited for 2018!” Comcast’s Womens’ Network packed over 170 care packages for women and children and donated many new items to assure that each care package had the essentials, “Comcast employees were thrilled to be able to collect, sort and pack personal care items for women and families who need it most.” At the end of the day, NAYA had two new parking lots, well-manicured grounds with newly planted flower beds along the entrance pathway, and a new, beautiful wooden bench installed in front of the building. We thank Comcast for their partnership and for generously giving their time, energy and heart to NAYA and to all the community organizations they impacted during Cares Day. 3


NATIVE AMERICAN YOUTH & FAMILY CENTER NEWSLETTER

SPRING 2017

CULTURE, HISTORY AND FUN!

SPRING BREAK CAMPS CONNECT YOUTH TO CULTURE

Over 60 kindergarten through 8th grade campers braved cool weather and rain to participate in this year’s Spring Break Camps. It was a wonderful week to #TeachCulture, as campers played traditional sports like Doubleball and Rock in Fist and enjoyed classes in cultural arts, learning powwow etiquette and regalia making. In wellness class, participants made cornmeal pancakes and ‘seed balls’ which they planted in the NAYA community garden. A field trip to the Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge and the ancient Chinook village site of Cathapotle was the highlight of the week. Visiting the Cathapotle Plankhouse, participants learned about the history of Chinook culture, plankhouses, and the different bands of coastal and inland Chinook.

ATNI CONFERENCE HELD IN PORTLAND

NAYA HOSTS THE AFFILIATED TRIBES OF NORTHWEST INDIANS YOUTH GROUP AND CULTURE NIGHT

Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians, (ATNI,) a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting tribal self determination and sovereignty, held its mid-year conference in Portland this May. Tribal leaders and ATNI members gathered together for discussions and presentations regarding policy, legislation, and the future of Indian Country in the Northwest. Having shared values of cultural education and leadership, NAYA was proud to participate, hosting the morning coffee service as Tawna Sanchez, NAYA Director of Family Services, provided opening remarks for the conference in her role as Oregon State Representative for District 43. NAYA Youth and Education Services organized the entertainment for the conference Culture Night, and NAYA youth joyously performed Native dance and song. We were also pleased to host the Native Youth Leadership Conference, for Native middle school to highschool aged youth, the weekend before the ATNI conference. We were happy to provide support for leadership in our Native youth, as it is a priority for our community. 4

Josiah Barney performs at ATNI Culture Night


NATIVE AMERICAN YOUTH & FAMILY CENTER NEWSLETTER

SPRING 2017

ECA LUNCHEON SHOWCASES STUDENTS

THE COMMUNITY SUPPORTS THE NAYA EARLY COLLEGE ACADEMY IN AN INSPIRING AFTERNOON

The Early College Academy (ECA) and all its impact was showcased through the powerful voices of our ECA youth with the spoken words of our Sacred Poets and the songs of our Many Nations Drummers. Student speaker, Paulina Eckley Gutierrez, Inupiaq, shared her story of resilience, aftermath and rainbows and the audience was moved to their feet for multiple standing ovations. Over 300 guests joined the celebration of our youth, making the Eighth Annual ECA Luncheon a huge success - raising important funds for our culturally-specific programming, college scholarships and teachers who help to ensure that our students succeed on their journeys. Touting a 72% graduation rate in 2016, Principal Lisa Otero’s State of the ECA spoke of the importance of the ECA’s culturally-specific programming and wraparound services. As Portland’s only Native-focused high school, the dedication and heart demonstrated by our students and teachers as they take steps every day to academic achievement is inspirational, as is the amazing support of the community. We thank our sponsors and donors who continue to invest in our future Indigenous leaders. Additional photos can be found on our Facebook page.

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NATIVE AMERICAN YOUTH & FAMILY CENTER NEWSLETTER

SPRING 2017

CONGRATULATIONS, CLASS OF 2017!

TEN STUDENTS GRADUATE AND RECEIVE DIPLOMAS IN AN UPLIFTING CEREMONY

On Friday, June 8, ten Early College Academy seniors graduated, and literally “put a cap” on years of hard work and dedication. Over 100 friends and family members joined NAYA teachers and staff in congratulating the NAYA ECA Class of 2017, in an emotional and inspiring ceremony. Executive Director, Paul Lumley, Yakama, welcomed our guests, acknowledging NAYA elders, staff and board members for their continued support of our youth. Commencement address speaker, Ty Defoe, Giizhiig, Ojibwe/Oneida Nations, shared songs and stories, encouraging our graduating class to persevere and thrive. Each graduate received an eagle feather, signifying respect, honor, strength, courage, wisdom and freedom; or cedar bundle, associated with prayer, healing, dreams and protection. In turn, each of the students gifted a teacher or staff member with one of five roses, in thanks for their support and guidance. As they complete this chapter of their lives - they are encouraged to access the supports they need to continue on their journeys, through our Youth and Education and Family Services Departments. Our ECA Graduates are, and will always be, NAYA family.

DOUBLE YOUR IMPACT FOR STUDENTS

DONATE TO THE ECA SCHOLARSHIP FUND AND HELP OUR YOUTH CONTINUE THEIR DREAMS OF GOING TO COLLEGE

We are pleased to announce that five NAYA ECA Scholarships were awarded this year to ECA graduates. These scholarships provide essential support for our students as they continue to pursue their educational goals. With generous donations from partners and the community and with our Relational Worldview and wraparound services model in mind, NAYA created the NAYA ECA Scholarship Fund. After an application process, ECA Scholarships are awarded to the students with the greatest need who demonstrate a commitment to their education. The scholarships are tailored to each student’s cultural needs, their future goals and their family and community support. Past ECA Scholarships have helped students like Eleno Llanos, Oglala Lakota, attend PSU and pursue a degree that he will one day use to support his community. Please consider making a donation to the NAYA ECA Scholarship Fund this year as we are excited to anJenni-Pedro Miguel at 2014 ECA graduation nounce a 100% match for the first $5,000 received. Your donation will have double the impact, providing college education opportunities for our hard-working youth. To donate, please use the remit envelope included in this newsletter and write, ”ECA Scholarship,” on the memo line of your check, or donate online at nayapdx.org. 6


NATIVE AMERICAN YOUTH & FAMILY CENTER NEWSLETTER

SPRING 2017

YOUTH AND STAFF TESTIFY IN SALEM

NAYA’S FIRST LEGISLATIVE DAY OF ACTION GIVES YOUTH AND STAFF OPPORTUNITY TO SHARE THEIR VIEWS

An engaged, civically-minded group of NAYA staff, ECA students, and community members traveled to Salem for NAYA’s first Legislative Day of Action in February. In preparation for meeting with their Representatives, they explored the impacts of current bills and how best to provide testimony in support of their views. Students ended the day feeling encouraged about raising their voices and exercising their civic rights with their Representatives. Of special importance, the group spoke in favor of Tribal Literacy Senate Bill 13, which directs the Department of Education to develop curriculum relating to the Native American experience in Oregon and provide professional development related to curriculum. A highlight of the day was sharing lunch with NAYA’s Family Services Director and first term House Representative, Tawna Sanchez. Read more about Legislative Action Day and the bills that impact Indian Country on NAYA’s blog.

LOCAL ELECTED OFFICIALS VISIT NAYA

MULTNOMAH COUNTY CHAIR KAFOURY, MULTNOMAH COUNTY COMMISSIONERS MEIERAN AND SMITH AND PORTLAND CITY COMMISSIONER NICK FISH VISIT TO HEAR FROM THEIR NATIVE AMERICAN CONSTITUENTS

Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury and Commissioner Meieran were welcomed to the March meeting of the Portland Indian Leaders Roundtable (PILR) held at NAYA. Chair Kafoury shared her plan to create a four-year strategy for programs impacting our Native community, and Commissioner Meieran pledged to be a champion for those issues. We are grateful for our partnership with Multnomah County, who worked diligently with NAYA throughout the recent budget process, and are happy to report that county funding for NAYA’s Youth Advocacy work has been permanently restored! Again, we thank Multnomah County for their belief and support of our work. May was National Older Americans Month and in celebration and respect, both City Commissioner Nick Fish, and Multnomah County Commissioner Loretta Smith, wanted to hear from NAYA Elders. While Commissioner Fish is in charge of the Portland Water Bureau and the Bureau of Environmental Services, he also serves as Council liaison to Elders in Action. County Commissioner Loretta Smith and her staff shared information about county services dealing with elder abuse. Our Elders were pleased to be heard about the issues concerning them. Commissioner Fish (top); Paul Lumley and Commissioner Smith 7


The Native American Youth and Family Center 5135 NE COLUMBIA BLVD. PORTLAND, OR 97218-1201 p:503.288.8177 f:503.288.1260 nayapdx.org

INSIDE NEW LEADERSHIP AT NAYA PORTLAND YOUTH & ELDERS COUNCIL UPDATE COMCAST CARES DAY CAMP WITH CULTURE- SPRING BREAK CAMP NAYA COLLEGE SCHOLARSHIPS ECA GRADUATION 2017 SAVE THE DATE! NAYA GALA 2017

MARK YOUR CALENDARS

CELEBRATE NATIVE ARTS AND CULTURE AT TWO FABULOUS EVENTS!

Our signature fundraiser and one of Portland’s premier events is just five months away! Please join us at the 14th annual NAYA Gala & Auction, Friday, November 17th at the Portland Art Museum. The largest celebration of Native American Heritage month in the Northwest, this wonderful evening of friends and community showcases Native American culture and offers beautiful works of art and exciting experience packages for your bidding pleasure. The NAYA Gala & Auction raises awareness and important funds that help us impact the lives of 10,000 individuals in Portland’s Native community. To learn more about sponsorship and to purchase tickets visit nayagala.org.

AND... SAVE THE DATE:

NAYA NEERCHOKIKOO POWWOW Saturday, September 9, 2017 • nayapdx.org/powwow

NON PROFIT US POSTAGE PAID PORTLAND OR PERMIT NO 2851

NAYA NEWSLETTER - SPRING 2017  
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