We R Native Ambassadors

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Nicolette Barton

Nicolette, Navajo, wants to get involved with her community.

I take much pride in being Native American. I want to create a positive impact on my peers. One thing I am passionate about is volunteer work and lending a helping hand. I'm very outgoing and can speak to others of various personalities about anything. I have a great enthusiasm.

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Nikisa Arthur

Nikisa, Coeur d'Alene, wants to represent her tribe in more ways.

I am currently powwow royalty for the tribe and want to continue to represent my tribe after I retire my crown. I am also a student at Gonzaga Prep in Spokane, Washington. I want to promote our culture with more opportunities to get more youth involved that the tribal school does not offer all students any longer. I am very creative. This creativity has helped me work through obstacles in planning events.

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Oswaldo Martin

Oswaldo, Mam Maya, wants to introduce his Mayan culture and community to the larger Indigenous community here in the US.

From Alaska to Chile we cover a great expanse of land as Indigenous people and as Native peoples we share surprisingly similar burdens and issues. I want to be able to share my vision with my people that even though our cultures may be unique and vast we can all be proud to say that we are Native. I think as Indigenous people we recognize that we are different in our language and ways of life, but I believe Unity and Diversity can still coexist. I along with many other Interpreters in my community bridge the gap between cultures and as such I find my role to be a communication tool, an arbiter of culture, and an activist within the community. In the US you can find immigrant Mayan communities in states like CA, WA, NE, Fl, and IL. And this is only a fraction of the many Mayan communities and cultures who now call the US their home.

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Patricia Noah

Patricia, White Mountain Apache and Oklahoma Choctaw, knows that she has leadership skills inside of her.

I know this because I have attended a program called Northwest Youth Corps and I was recommend for BLP which is a leadership program for youth and I have heard of this program through Chemawa Indian School out here in Oregon. This gives me the opportunity to do something with myself other than working. I really do want to do things for my people in an inspiring way and to show them that there are Native kids who are doing their best to make an impact in this world. I am passionate about showing that there are people out here to help you and to bring the youth together. I am very passionate about youth! My parent's used to help the youth out a whole lot and seeing what they gained was amazing. It can truly change someone's life around. Some skills and personal attributes I'll bring to this position are openness and my personal life.

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Roy Murphy

Roy, Muckleshoot, wants to bring promote healthy lifestyles, food sovereignty, and sovereignty in general .

We need to focus on what effects us the most. From child abuse/domestic violence/elder abuse, to drug abuse, alcohol abuse, and substance abuse. We must help our people understand what is already easily available without approaching them and having them feel uneducated. I want to be an Ambassador and raise this awareness as best as I can. To be empowered you must empower others so that our youth know there is a chance. I am passionate about bringing our youth outside and doing outdoor activities that bring a sense of discovery and help them know our ancestral regions. A skill that I can bring is cooperation and with a good sense of positive reinforcement.

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Russell Iron Cloud

Russell, Standing Rock, believes in empowering our youth and knows that they can have a bright and positive future.

I believe Native youth can accomplish anything and I want them to know they have older generations that support them their endeavors. One thing that I am passionate about is keeping our traditions and our tribal way of life with us that live within the city and within the urban areas. And for all of us to know that we are not alone in the cities. One skill that I will bring to this position is writing; I believe with well written words that we can empower our community. And I believe being positive no matter the situation is key.

Sandee Spahr

Sandee, Cowlitz, is a happy, positive person who wants to learn to be an effective change agent for Native youth.

I would like to educate our youth on activities that are not excepted or tolerated. I want to teach our youth the native traditions and culture for future generations.

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ShielTeal Watah

ShielTeal, Pit River Tribe, has always admired the We R Native Ambassador program.

I think being a Ambassador creates a lot of opportunities to become a great leader. I would like to spread the word about Hunger. I would like more people to know about My local food pantry. How one dollar can buy 10lbs of food or create 8 meals. I also want to let people know how many families rely on the pantry to feed their families. I am a very hard worker and passionate about helping others.

Takima Merritt

Takima, Klamath, is most passionate about the growth, prosperity, and the enhancements of his community through the youth, economy, and global appearance.

I grew up in a small town outside of Klamath falls called Chiloquin. I lived there for about 4 years until my mom and I moved out to our old family ranch. I proceeded to go to school in Chiloquin and still remain a presence there. Growing up I was an only child, and so I did a lot of thinking in my free time. I remember that I would ask myself questions that some adults I know at the time didn't know the answers to. I found this troubling, for I knew that someone knew these questions. A couple years later my mom got married to a man and had three kids. By the time they got married I was old enough to sort of make up answers to the questions I had. As I went into high school I found out about philosophy, which in its purest form, is the acquisition and writing of knowledge. Recently I've began to answer my questions with some reliability. As I grew up, I began to ask more questions, these questions were geared more towards my community. My community, which is the Klamath tribes, went through a period of time in which our culture, and our people were hurt badly. We went through a series of events called termination, which, in a short summary, is when the government made an agreement with a younger generation of natives. The agreement was the trade of, a lump some of money, for the Native's lumber rights. The younger generation ended up giving up their lumber rights and in the long run it hurt our communities economic stability badly. I wish to one day raise my tribe above the hurt and negligence to someday regain our lumber rights, raise our economy, and to reestablish us as a high ranking tribe once again. One skill I can bring to the Ambassador role, is the ability to speak politically. I also have ambition, perseverance and knowledge.