Honoring Indigenous Peoples of Vermont
In honor of Indigenous Peoples Day on October 11th, this month’s newsletter is focused on highlighting the Indigenous Peoples of Vermont. It is necessary to recognize that Vermonters live on un-ceded Abenaki land. The Abenaki nation has deeply influenced the culture, experience, and traditions of Vermont’s history.
The rights of Indigenous peoples, including the Abenaki Nation, have been overshadowed throughout history. Our work as People of Color is to uplift one another, and continue to support the issues around the autonomy of Indigenous peoples. You can read a guide to celebrating Indigenous People’s Day at this link, and you can also find it in our newsletter below. Support the Atowi nation and the Nulhegan Abenaki nation by exploring their events, advocacy, and educational opportunities.
This month, the October newsletter includes a spotlight feature on Chief Don Stevens, of the Abenaki Nation. He speaks at length about the challenges of being an Indigenous person in what is now known as Vermont, stating, “Indigenous people oftentimes have been excluded, or discounted, and not getting those resources we need.” Additionally, the newsletter includes events and news related to learning about the Indigenous experience and celebrating Indigenous culture. Check out all of these opportunities below!
Get to Know VT PoC
Businesses and People
CHIEF OF THE NULHEGAN ABENAKI TRIBE,
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE NULHEGAN ABENAKI 501(C)(3) ORGANIZATION
Don Stevens currently resides in Shelburne, and has lived in Vermont his entire life – as he is part of the Nulhegan Abenaki nation. Now serving as their Chief and the Executive Director of its organization, he enjoys both roles because “either way [he’s] working for the people.” To white allies and fellow people of color, Chief Stevens’ advice for supporting the Abenaki is by continuing to keep them in the conversation. As far as percentage of the Vermont population, “we’re at 0.2%,” he says, “so if we’re not included in those conversations, the more we’re left behind, and the gap gets wider between us and other people of color.”
Updates and Resources
- Indigenous People’s Day Rocks!
Enjoy drums, dance circle, vendors, food & an evening concert! Rain date is October 10th.
Find all the details here.
- VAAA Abenaki Culture Lessons
Vermont Abenaki Artists Association (VAAA) and Abenaki Arts & Education Center scholars, historians, and culture bearers present vibrant regional culture. The current session is full, so stay sign up for the next course!
Find their website here.
- Healing our Future: Indigenous Wealth Building
Explore Indigenous approaches to wealth, stories from wealth building leaders, and ways Indigenous wealth concepts can heal our future in this virtual event on Oct. 11th.
Click here for the event page.
- A Guide to Supporting Indigenous People’s Day
IllumiNative created a toolkit for allies and advocates to support Indigenous Peoples, complete with Covid-19 safe ways to get involved.
Click here to download the guide.
- Calling all VT PoC Members!
We are creating a private database for VTPoC members to network with one another. Whether you have been a member since we started or have just joined, please include your info below!
Click here to complete it.
- VTDigger News Survey
VTDigger wants to learn more about the news needs of Vermonters and how people are getting information, so they can work to improve news coverage and delivery.
Take the news survey at this link.