Indigenous Stewards Magazine
This magazine follows in the tradition of story-telling which our ancestors have used for generations to pass down knowledge. Stories from Indigenous students and young professionals across The University of Arizona and various other entities shared their stories with the hopes of inspiring younger generations. These stories include; experiences in high school and undergraduate opportunities at The University of Arizona, events hosted by student run organizations across The University of Arizona, personal endeavors in land stewardship, as well as voices from young leaders across Indian Country who are invested in sharing knowledge and building capacity with younger generations. This intergenerational sharing of knowledge will hopefully lead Indigenous youth from across Indian Country to pursue higher education and/or traditional education systems to continue Indigenous stewardship.
Spring 2018 has brought the third issue of Indigenous Stewards to life, which would have not been possible if it were not for more than 300 individuals. All journeys and knowledge shared are just as colorful as the cover artwork that recognizes the need for all hands to assist healing our Mother Earth.
Volume 3 has truly come a long way to share empowered voices of the youth, scholars, and communities. These voices are working to address environmental health and how the environment affects human health and how we impact our environment.
The magazine highlights various youth who are taking initiatives as environmental advocates. Our youth are not waiting, but acting now in innovate ways to make change that will improve their home communities.
A key feature is Dr.PH. Stephanie Carroll Rainie who works to create “Data Warriors”. These warriors are individuals working towards a vision of healthy, sustainable communities by claiming development of one’s own tribal data – for the tribe by the tribe. Data that advances tribal aspirations for collective and individual wellbeing within the Indigenous nations.
Among the stories are various programs that display youth who have flourished and made connections with Elders such as at the Protecting Our Lands Camp, The Native Men’s Prayer Circle, and second Tribal Environmental Health Forum.
The spring 2016 issue of Indigenous Stewards continued through the support of the Agnes Nelms Haury Program and the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. In this second volume, the publication focused on environmental awareness by highlighting those who are researching the mechanisms behind human disease risks such as environmental exposures.
Featured are individuals’ journeys of experiencing environmental impacts in their home communities. Their stories’ entwine what motivated them to purse and accomplish their doctoral degrees and to give back to their communities; such as Dr. Karletta Chief, Dr. Monica Yellowhair, and Ph.D. Candidate Carrie Nuva Joseph, who have all been affected by the mining of coal and/or uranium. Their various research includes understanding how natural and human disturbances may affect soil hydrology, investigating climate change and its effects on indigenous communities, and the effects of uranium on DNA in relation to cancer in comparison to the role of the environment and diet tendencies.
Indigenous Stewards looks to continue to expand resources through partnerships outside of Arizona, for example with the Swinomish Indian Tribal Community. A wonderful model was developed to gain more insight as to the meanings and priorities of health from a Swinomish point of view known as “Indigenous Health Indicators”. Included in this issue are works of writings and photography of Indigenous youth, and the Center’s efforts to engage youth in environmental science by hosting Environmental Health Conferences. Highlighted is the first Tribal Environmental Health Forum, which took place in April of 2015 to promote the sharing of stories of health and the environment.
Indigenous Stewards is a product of the Native Environmental Health Stories Project. It was created in collaboration between the Southwest Environmental Health Sciences Center at the College of Pharmacy and the Center for Ecogenetics at the University of Washington. The publication focuses on issues and topics related to the health and the environment among Indigenous communities.
Amanda Bahe, Editor in Chief, and Gilbert L. Rivera Jr., Publisher, hope the magazine will begin conversations regarding environmental factors that affect everyday lives. Both Bahe and Rivera are outreach specialists in SWEHSC and have actively participated in the creation of the magazine.
The magazine includes features on community organizations and news stories on environmental topics, such as arsenic contamination in water. It also includes a section highlighting Indigenous leaders involved in environmental sciences. These leaders share their wisdom with Indigenous youth in the publication.
Approximately 75 people attended a November open house event to announce the magazine. "We wanted people to understand the purpose of releasing an environmental magazine and what our hopes are for it", Bahe says.
At the event, several authors featured in the magazine spoke about their work. Monica Yellowhair (Navajo), College of Pharmacy and post-doctoral research assistant at the University of Arizona Cancer Center, talked about her research related to uranium on the Navajo Nation. Amy Juan (Tohono O'odham), a community organizer and co-founder of an environmental network, spoke about how she bridges her cultural upbringing with environmental activism. Mike Lindsey, a Cherokee storyteller, discussed the power of storytelling to address issues and find solutions.
Hard copies of the magazine are circulated on a first-come first-serve basis. To request hard copies please contact Dr. Marti Lindsey by email, firstname.lastname@example.org, or by phone, (520) 626-3692.