In the past several months, since UNITY announced the 2020 class of 25 under 25 awardees, UNITY’s 25 under 25 awardees have naturally been keeping busy during this time. Even with the hurdles of a pandemic, these students have found ways to be helpful to their respective communities and be effective leaders. Some have been helping with food drives to help families sustain themselves during this pandemic, others helped advocate for changes to Columbus Day in local communities.
For students like Brook Thompson, she is passionate about sharing and learning about her culture. So she made dinner mats in her language as a way to learn to only speak Yurok (Brooke’s traditional language) during their meals. Along with an affinity for her culture, Brooke is a finalist for an Arizona State University fellowship in making science themed beaded artwork/basketwork.
Like many other students, Timothy Benally, has been keeping up with his academics as a senior at Penn State University while giving back to his community through his job and personal endeavours. Like many, he has been completing his course work virtually. We commend those how have worked hard with some many challenges that have been presented during this time.
A few others, such as Nadira, have been using social media to disseminate information on voting, census and mental health. As mental health has been a top topic of discussion during this pandemic, finding ways to provide social support has been a personal priority for many. Perhaps for those who are trying to stay creatively active in their communities during this time, while social distancing, these ideas would be a great way to start. Keep a look out as UNITY will share more activities and news from Native Youth around Indian Country.