The following is from a message sent to those who participated in the Toward Right Relationships with Native Peoples events in July when Paula Palmer was able to be with us here in Iowa and Nebraska. But even if you weren’t able to attend those events, you are still welcome to attend the meeting described here.
Each of us was surely impacted by participation in the workshop “Roots of Injustice, Seeds of Change,” the film entitled “Two Rivers,” or the presentation on the real consequences of the Indian Boarding Schools which forced assimilation of Native Peoples into dominant white culture and did terrible harm that continues today due to intragenerational trauma.
A few of us have gathered twice since July- once in August and once in September. You are invited to join us again this coming Friday, November 1st, from 6 to 8 PM, in the Conference Room on the first floor of Friends House at 4211 Grand Avenue in Des Moines.
In those two earlier meetings we shared diverse perspectives and ideas about what the process of building respectful relationships with Native Nations and Peoples might look like here in Iowa. We also talked about how the Sunrise Movement and other youth-led (and also indigenous-led) movements and organizations are working to support the Green New Deal. The focus of the prior gatherings was to get to know one another better and to create a safe and respectful space for that to happen.
On Friday of this week the focus will be on deciding if we wish to continue to meet here in central Iowa. We need to seek clarity and unity of purpose if we are to continue to gather each month or perhaps every second month. If we continue, we have decided that our structure would be non-hierarchical, would allow people to participate at able, and would strive to acknowledge the gifts and voices of all involved.
Please reflect upon these questions and bring your own questions to share. Do you wish to continue to meet? If so, why? Are you among those who are interested in becoming a facilitator of the TRR programs? If yes, would these gatherings be a way to find new venues for the programs and to also find more support for this work? Do you have other, more divergent ideas on why you would like to continue to periodically gather? Is the creation of a more formal organization seem beneficial or needed? Yes? No? We are all already very engaged with many groups. Paula Palmer has offered the idea of an Iowa-based organization that might be called Right Relationship Iowa.
Here is a link to the newly located website for Towards Right Relationship With Native Peoples, which is now the first North American program of the Quaker organization known as Friends Peace Teams: https://friendspeaceteams.org/trr/
If you are unable to join us on Friday of this week I do urge you to share your thoughts with me. firstname.lastname@example.org I will report back to everyone on this limited contact list on what the consensus seems to be. Thank you for everything you are already doing to transform and heal the world, our precious Mother Earth!With gratitude,