Tiwahe Foundation Will Be a Rare Resource for Native Americans
Did you know that less than 0.5 % of US institutional grant-making money goes to support programming for American Indians? The new Tiwahe Foundation hopes to fill this gap and create new opportunities for grantees in the state of Minnesota. It will be one of only 36 other foundations in the US directed by American Indians.*
Children performing at the Prairie Dakota Wacipi Celebration in Redwing, Minn. The Tiwahe Foundation will support future leaders of the American Indian community in Minnesota through the awarding of micro-grants.
The foundation is the culmination of the The American Indian Family Empowerment Program (AIFEP), whose strategic goal was to create the new foundation. Tiwahe Foundation is a continuance of AIFEP’s mission, and will replace AIFEP.
It is the only Native-American-run foundation in the state of Minnesota whose primary focus is to serve as a catalyst for individuals seeking fulfillment through education, economic self-sufficiency, service to the community and creating cultural connections.
The goal of the Tiwahe Foundation is to build upon AIFEP’s 16-year history of grant making to Minnesota’s American Indian community. “We believe the individuals that will be supported by the Tiwahe Foundation are the generation of American Indian people that will build upon our past, strengthen our culture and values, and begin to restore and sustain a healthy community seven generations into the future,” stated LaVon Lee, Grotto Foundation program officer and Tiwahe Foundation administrator in a recent press release.
The Seventh Generation Campaign was established earlier this year to raise $6 million for an endowment. The campaign was seeded with gifts totaling $1 million from the Marbrook Foundation, Westcliff Foundation, Grotto Foundation and the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community, and program support from The Saint Paul Foundation and The Minneapolis Foundation.
The Tiwahe Foundation is actively looking for additional contributors. If you’re interested in learning more about this new organization and its mission, read Scott Russell’s MinnPost article on the foundation or visit the Grotto Foundation website.
*Source: A Demographic Profile Of Independently Incorporated Native American Foundations and Selected funds in the United States prepared by Louis Delgado and the Center for Urban Research and Learning, Loyola University of Chicago, published by Native Americans in Philanthropy