On August 1st, Native Americans in Philanthropy CEO Sarah Eagle Heart and Anathea Chino, Senior Advisor of Advance Native Political Leadership joined the Indigenous Women Rise (IWR) collective in Albuquerque, New Mexico for the Women Empowering Women for Indian Nations (WEWIN) annual conference. WEWIN provides Native women with the knowledge, support, and resources necessary to achieve success in their personal and professional lives. Every year the annual conference focuses on building upon the strength and power of Native women.
IWR held a morning session this year on “Indigenizing the Women’s March: Visibility, Leadership and Self-Representation”. The panel for the session consisted of a presentation by Women’s March Honorary co-Chair, LaDonna Harris, and IWR co-founders Sarah Eagle Heart, Anathea Chino, and research consultation facilitated by Native Americans in Philanthropy. During the session, panelists discussed the formation of the IWR collective, their involvement with the planning committee for the national Women’s March on Washington in January, and why inclusion of and representation for Indigenous communities and women matters.
It is necessary for Indigenous communities to see ourselves in national agendas and platforms and the inclusion of edits influenced by the IWR Collective to the national Unity Principles document more accurately reflected the landscape of the country by making it more inclusive of Indigenous communities and our unique position as sovereign nations.
LaDonna Harris shared her personal experience as an honorary co-Chair for the Women’s March and looked at a history of organizing among Indigenous women. Looking beyond the march, the National Strategy meeting held at the National Indian Gaming Association was highlighted and the priority issues that were identified by attendees as most important to women and Native communities which has since then helped to guide the IWR platform. WEWIN attendees were also given an overview of The Indigenous Lifecourse: Strengthening the health and well-being of Native youth report and the key protective factors outlined in the research.
This session encouraged attendees to step more boldly into their leadership as Native women and to stay connected to the IWR collective as a network of support and resources. As IWR continues to grow and promote grassroots organizing in our communities, they plan to produce their first podcast soon and will be hiring an Organizing Director for the collective. Watch indigenouswomenrise.org for more details.
About Indigenous Women Rise:
Indigenous Women Rise (IWR) is a partnership between Advance Native Political Leadership, Native Americans in Philanthropy, Native Voice Network, Native Voices Rising, National Indian Women’s Resource Center, Americans for Indian Opportunity, Indigenous Environmental Network, Continental Network of Indigenous Women of the Americas, North American Region, and other key groups and individuals working to advance Indigenous rights and issues.