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Native American Initiative

Rural LISC's Native American Initiative is a new program that includes an assessment of Rural LISC capacity, along with potential collaborative efforts with CDFI's currently working in Native American Country, that seeks to discover ways in which Rural LISC can better serve tribal communities. The discovery process is an initial step in creating a programmatic approach designed to support CDFIs working in Native American geographies, which represent a major portion of persistent poverty areas in the United States.

Seven Sisters Community Development Group co-manager Vickie Oldman-John presents to the Rural LISC Advisory Committee and staff on culturally relevant approaches in Indian Country.
Rural LISC Advisory Committee members and staff listen to a presentation by Acoma Pueblo representatives on challenges and opportunities in their Pueblo.

The Initiative formally kicked off in February 2017, when Rural LISC staff and Advisory Committee members gathered for a Native American Cultural Training Retreat in Albuquerque, New Mexico, led by Seven Sisters Community Development Group, a renowned consultancy in Native American Indian Country that will provide oversight in laying the groundwork for the Initiative.

The training included a tour of the historic Acoma Pueblo along with education in Native cultural awareness and tribal governance, and identified challenges in working in Native American country.