Celebrating Native Cultures: How to Become More NativeAware All Year

As the movement for diversity, inclusion and social equity continues, we must do more than what’s easy and work to live by these principles beyond flashy moments. Take Native American Heritage Month for instance – it brings lots of attention to Native culture and causes. However, that attention is not sustained. It’s important to become more NativeAware and harness opportunities to impact this underserved population throughout the year.

Pay attention to these moments throughout the year to earn more and make a difference related to Native culture and issues:

  • Martin Luther King Day (January): Learn more about how Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. advocated for Native American rights American rights and the importance of Native American inclusion in the fight for civil rights.
  • President’s Day (February): Explore past Presidents who advocated for Native Americans.
  • Memorial Day (May): Learn more about the high rate of Native military service and the impact of the Navajo Code Talkers.
  • Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women (May): Get involved to support the MMIW movement and help those seeking missing relatives.
  • Back to School (August): Download our boarding schools fact sheet to learn what really happened at these government-run institutions.
  • Labor Day (September): Step up to ensure your employer is paying equitable wages to Native labor and closing the Native women’s pay gap.
  • Indigenous Peoples’ Day (October): Participate in events that honor the Indigenous people in your state, rather than celebrating Columbus.
  • Thanksgiving (November): The real history of the first Thanksgiving is not taught in U.S. schools. Learn more with our download.
  • Native Heritage Month (November): Take time out on Heritage Day (the Friday after Thanksgiving) and throughout November to celebrate Heritage Month and participate in Native cultures.
  • Giving Tuesday (November): Whether your favorite cause is food security, education, animal welfare of social justice, kick off the holiday season with a meaningful gift for our First Americans. You can donate here.
  • Christmas (December): And remember the Elders and Children as Christmas draws near. Learn more about how you can make a holiday impact. Get your workforce involved too.

Aside from the familiar, stay abreast of cultural opportunities in your area such as powwows, museums, and art exhibits. Try Native American recipes and learn more about the Native American Food Movement. Read Native authors like Tommy Orange and David Truer or watch all-Native shows like “Reservation Dogs.” Tune in to what’s happening with key issues that can impact the tribes, such as pipelines crossing Native lands or the Supreme Court ruling on ICWA this year.

By becoming more #NativeAware, you can be part of the change that fuels social equity for the Native American community and tribes.

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