The Evento Cultural Indigena is another great accomplishment of MCUI. The first event in Monterey County was held in 2009 in Gonzales, which is now an annual event carried mainly by community donations and support. The event is open to the community as well as other indigenous groups throughout California.
While the main purpose of the events is to celebrate indigenous cultures, it also serves as a platform to inform the indigenous community, about available services in Santa Rosa and surrounding counties. Local social service agencies and health centers participate in the event as well. Both projects demonstrate the need for indigenous cultural and artistic space in Santa Rosa.
Through workshops we can bring traditional artists, weavers, musicians, and community leaders together to teach and share their knowledge with our youth.We can maintain our indigenous culture, language, clothing and music in this way. Indigenous youth will learn not to be ashamed of their culture, but proud, and together we will build a better life for our communities. This is a way to lead youth to focus on other activities instead of being in the street with gangs. We will also make a difference by introducing teachers, administrators, and students in local schools to the idea that Triqui culture is a worthy topic of study and appreciation and that schools can draw on the cultural resources of even minimally-educated Triqui community members who are knowledgeable about traditional arts to improve community well-being.
On Tuesday, October 9th, North Bay Organizing Project, MCUI and the community came together to commemorate the 2017 wildfires, and to bring forth how important, now more than ever, it is to recognize the legal rights of nature. The procession began at beautiful Juilliard Park and ended in Courthouse Square. In protecting our Mother Earth, we are working toward creating a long lasting change in our community and beyond!
International solidarity week of action to prepare our communities for climate catastrophe in a way that pays attention to the social inequities that come with climate change. This solidarity event centered Indigenous people and marginalized communities at the center of responsiveness and solution-making.
MCUI continues to promote and organize community events in Santa Rosa, Windsor, Petaluma and Napa. Thanks to the Food Empowerment Project and the work of Lauren Ornelas that funded back packs for education, our organization is doing a grassroots campaign to address the educational achieve gap in Indigenous immigrant communities. Our cultural expertise and relationships with marginalized and flourishing Indigenous families and communities ensures that back packs full of school supplies reach Indigenous children. On September 2018, helped Chatino (an Indigenous community from Oaxaca) children learn a few words in their Native language as they selected their favorite back pack. We are a small organization but we make big and unique impacts. We are proud to do all the footwork and the cultural communication to bring Indigenous families together and speak to them about the importance of education, and to root children in their Indigenous identity and let them know they have a lot of wisdom and power behind them. We must make sure we work towards closing the education achievement gap so the next generation can graduate from high school, university, and beyond.
Napa Bookmine, Latino Heritage Month and MCUI organized Rural Woman and Climate Change with support from Napa Climate NOW and Napa Sierra Club presented a special book discussion, film screening, and interactive sari art with artist and climate activist Monica Jahan Bose, author of Rising Up to Climate Change: Storytelling with Saris. In celebration of Latino Heritage Month. Xulio Soriano, a Napa Valley artist, environmental activist hailing from Oaxaca, shared climate stories from Mexico and California. Monica will screen a short excerpt from her film, sign her new book, and we will all draw and write climate pledges and stories on a Bangladeshi sari. We want to also congratulate outreach coordinator, Cristina Ramirez who was also part of the event representing the Triqui community, her stories were shared in her Indigenous language (Shicjshon “Triqui”) which were also translated into Spanish and English
We would like to thank the The Pollination Project for awarding a seed grant to Cristina Reyes for her outstanding service to the community. She is helping make the world a better place by participating in many community events and forming the relationships and insights that became tools to help her organize Evento Cultural Indígena with a team of Indigenous people in Movimiento Cultural de la Unión Indígena. This event promoted the languages and cultures of Indigenous people, and helped make bridges between service providers and Indigenous communities. This micro-grant is an infinitely large support for Cristina, not only as financial support to further stimulate her community work, but also as a gesture of love and affirmation for her tireless spirit. Thank you Cristina for your initiative!
The event celebrates Indigenous languages and traditions. It also connects service providers to the Indigenous immigrant community, who often face many barriers. The event is free to the public. The event includes dances from Indigenous communities across the Americas, including an opening ceremony by the Pomo people, who are native to Sonoma County. A new guest is Una Isu, from Fresno, California. Una Isu raps in the Indigenous language Mixteco, in Spanish, and in English. There will also be a local Dakota drumming group.
Multiple service providers will be present supporting attendees with dental, cardiovascular, mental, and other health and well-being services. Other resources for farm workers, laborers, immigrant communities, and youth will be available as well. Vendors will be selling traditional food and artisanal wares.
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This is the event post text and flyer.