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Vital Roles & Healthy Goals for Native Youth

A key element of  UNITY’s mission is to foster the spiritual, mental, physical, and social development of American Indian and Alaska Native youth. 

What does this mean to you as an individual? What does this mean to your place in your Family, Youth Council or Community? 

Let’s talk about Roles. Have you ever thought about the different roles you have? Just being born signs you up for roles, such as; Brother, Sister, Daughter, Son, Niece, Granddaughter, Grandson, Uncle, Auntie and Cousin. You are a friend and neighbor. You became a student and doors opened to be a club member, team member, employee and coworker. You are a member of your Nation or Tribe. Cultural roles in ceremony are singers, dancers and spiritual leaders. Gifts and talents emerge, as you have grown up. You may be discovering or cultivating your role as an artist, musician, athlete, writer and speaker. You may be a gifted student in specific areas of study, like math or science. You may fill the role of an advocate and activist for a social or environmental cause. There are many roles. Your range of roles are vital to you and others. What are yours?                                                                                                                                                               

How are you handling the roles you have? Is your head spinning? Your role as a young person has many elements. Your roles are important. Each one intertwines with the other to make you, You! And You are truly Amazing! If you don’t think so today, you are and you have great potential. 

You may not have the best relationships, be the best student, have fine tuned talents, gifts or your dream job, yet. You may be doing great in some Roles and not so much in others.  Identify one or two of your roles that are important to you. 

Setting Healthy Goals for your Roles will help you to achieve some balance to move forward. Most of the roles we have are relational, which means other people are involved. Relational leads to emotions. We have a lot of needs, but we also have a lot to give to meet others needs. It is give and take. The happiest times are when we are up to something good with someone we care about, making good choices, sharing our talent, and serving others. What is one role you would like to focus on? 

For example, if you chose Cousin. What is the current state of your relationship? It may be good, or not so good, either way there is always room to make it better, by just thinking about it.  

My Goal: Be a good Cousin to build a great relationship and make good memories.                    To accomplish this, I will need to do the following. 

My Objectives: 1) Spend time 2) Be kind 3) Listen more. 

  1. I will initiate an activity or hang out once a week 
  2. I will hold back my poor attitude and be kind when we talk
  3. I will listen to their ideas and concerns

Let’s examine Goals for your Role as a Youth Council (YC) member. What is your current status or participation? How can I serve my council better? Let’s say you talk yourself out of attending meetings, so you are missing out and not getting as involved as you would like. 

My Goal: Attend Youth Council meetings regularly to get more involved.

My Objectives: 1)  Decide to Attend meetings by telling a parent, YC member or Advisor 2) Put YC meetings and event dates on my calendar 3) Arrange rides

  1. Telling someone about my decision will help me to stay accountable, committed and stay motivated
  2. YC activity dates in my calendar will help me remember
  3. Arranging my rides will remove the excuse of not attending 

Most Youth Councils are not meeting in person right now. Arrange your quiet space with wifi for for attending the next virtual meeting ahead of time.  

Your roles combined with your goals is a way to think things through. Identify your Roles and Goals under the four pillars named in the Mission Statement and the UNITY logo. These Roles and Goals merge together to make a good day, a productive month and a happier year. Life is challenging. If You’re reading this, we are all interconnected by UNITY. Let’s hope for one another that 2021 will be a year to remember surpassing the setbacks of 2020. Good will come, as we acknowledge the Creator, embrace our Roles and realize our Goals. 

Spiritual Mental Physical Social
Dancer YC Member Runner Cousin
Prayer  Student Healthy Eater YC Member