Youth Council News – UNITY, Inc.

Seeking Applications from Four Regions: Join the Executive Committee Today

Thank you to those who have applied for the 2021-22 Executive Committee!
We are still seeking applications from the following regions who have not had any applications. This year is the first time that youth do NOT have to attend the National UNITY Conference in person to run. Virtual options have been made available for youth to participate in the elections remotely. The Deadline has been extended to June 18, 2021. 

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Racial Healing Service Project Ideas

Power of Youth Challenge: America’s Promise Awards 10 Winners with $1,000 to Expand their Service Projects and Bring Positive Impacts to their Communities

Last year, America’s Promise Alliance launched the Power of Youth Challenge to encourage and inspire youth-led service projects around the country.  In partnership with Charles Stewart Mott Foundation and Peace First, we posed a challenge to young people to identify an issue or an injustice in their community and put forth an idea that engages others to make an impact. To deepen their knowledge and insights about a problem their community faces and put forth a solution, we gave them $250 to help make it happen.    Read More

UNITY Male Co-President Scottie Miller Steps Up for the Environment 

Many may know Scottie Miller (Swinomish, Washington) as the funny, lovable Northwest Wellness Warrior or the wise Male Co-President of the National UNITY Council, but in his down town this leader makes time to play an active role in his community’s environmental team in Swinomish.  “All UNITY youth should take a stand to protect and advocate for environmental issues whenever possible. It is very important to lead by example as an ambassador” says Scottie.
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Snow Snake Games

‘Ojibweg (snake) Bibooni (Snow) Ataadiiwin (Game)’ is the Ojibwe language of the Anishinaabe. The Annual Snow Snake games were hosted by Ojibwe Charter School in the Bay Mills Indian Community. It was a freezing snowy winter day. Nonah and her brother Tyler participated. They are UNITY Alumni Josh and Sarah Homminga’s children. Nonah, beat her brother Tyler’s length in this friendly, but competitive match.
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My healing journey: UNITY Alaskan Native youth

Healing Indigenous Lives Youth Submission: Korbin Storms, Native Village of Unalakleet, Alaska

I would tell Native Youth that struggle to see themselves as leaders that they have resiliency in their DNA, that sometimes it takes someone who has been low and lost before to connect to others that are feeling that way, that they have a unique perspective and so much potential to enact change and that the best leaders are those that give hope to others. The challenge I am most proud of overcoming in my lifetime is learning that although I have a relationship with mental illness it is not define who I am. I am so much more than my depression. That, perhaps most importantly, I could be a good mother despite my illness.

If you are putting yourself into a leadership role that focuses on healing oneself, you must show character and be transparent.  #NativeYouthVoices

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When I learned to love the desert, I learned to love myself

UNITY Healing Indigenous Lives Youth Submission: Damien Carlos
My whole life until I was fifteen, I didn’t know much of anything about my culture besides the fact that I belonged to the Tohono O’odham tribe. I knew nothing about where I came from. I went to schools on and off the reservation. My family dealt with alcoholism. I was in a dark place for a long time. When I was fifteen I moved back to the reservation and found people that were willing to take me places to learn about my culture. I learned songs, stories, and helped in ceremonies. I haven’t looked back since. When I learned to love the Tohono (Desert), I learned to love myself. For the last two years, I’ve been working with other youth from my community that have stories similar to mine to create a program to create opportunities for more youth to experience and learn out culture. I believe my culture saved my life and can help many more kids. Read More

Thomas Henry’s vision for Saginaw Chippewa

Youth Leader Submission: Boozhoo Ginewanakwad ndiznikaaz miishiks ndoodem, Mount Pleasat nidojiba. Hello my spirit name is Golden Eagle Cloud, I am of the Turtle Clan and live in Mount Pleasant. My English name is Thomas Rae Henry, attending Mount Pleasant High School. As a member of the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe of Michigan, I enjoy running, playing guitar, skateboarding, and dancing at powwows. My interests are in fashion, native culture, traditional foods and medicines, our native language, politics, and economics. I run cross country and track and am the oldest sibling in my family. I take pride in having two sisters and a little brother who look up to me. I set a good example for the native youth in my community living a drug and alcohol free life. Read More

Meet HoChunk Leader Asia Rave

Youth Leader Submission: Hoocak rašra Hohaapjikereiga hiigaire Anaaga Maixete rašra Asia Ravega hiigaire, Nioxawanį eja haci haje. Nioxawani celebs hiyugeina. Hello, My Hochunk name is Morning light and my English name is Asia Rave. I am tribally affiliated with the Hochunk Nation in Western Wisconsin and surrounding areas and am the previous 153rd Jr miss Winnebago Nebraska (one of the oldest powwows in North America) and present Miss Nioxawani powwow princess. I am the daughter of Jeriah and Erin Rave and Michelle Rave. I have 8 siblings, including 7 who are also enrolled and am an advocate for the preservation of the Hochunk language as we are losing both our language and culture. Read More

Finding Leadership through Recycling

Meet Evelyn Vega-Simpson: Through serving as the Media Coordinator for the Tulalip Youth Council, 16 year old Evelyn has developed excellent public speaking skills while being comfortable in front of a crowd. “I have developed problem solving skills, and have good communication skills” she explained. Evelyn found her true calling for leadership through her community service work preserving the environment. As the Chair of the Environment Committee, Evelyn would like to change the way Tulalip Tribes recycle. Another goal for her is to work with her Tribal Board of Directors to install more solar panels. Read More

Youth Council member takes initiative to bring Christmas Cheer to tribal elders

On Dec. 23, the Akimel O’Odham/ Pee-Posh Youth Council (AOPPYC) delivered gifts and tokens of appreciation to the Caring House elderly residents and staff. AOPPYC members donated gift bags, which consisted of lip balm, lotions, facemasks, Epson salt, coffee, cookies, desserts, and other treats. AOPPYC At-Large Member Javonni Molina from Sacaton spearheaded the effort. Molina worked as a physical therapy tech at the Caring House and grew to admire the staff’s tireless efforts with the residents. Read More