TIYOSPAYE WINYAN MAKA
Extended family of Women of the Earth
to promote alternative housing and energy and support nutritional and educational sovereignty for indigenous women and their families
A VISION TO
LEAD THE WAY…
Elissa Tivona (left) with Tiyospaye Winyan Maka Director, Christinia Eala
We continuously strive to create support networks, to encourage self-help, to promote healing, and a sustainable lifestyle for indigenous women, youth, and families, whether living off or on the reservation. All of our programs embody our commitment to the Lakota value of wicosani, which means to walk in balance with the four aspects of self: physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. By combining traditional values with educational training in sustainable building practices, we strengthen the capacity and confidence of indigenous people to lead the was as engaged and effective stewards of the Earth's resources.
INDIGENOUS WISDOM CENTER PARTNERSHIP
The people of Turtle Island come together in the knowledge that humanity’s survival on a fragile planet depends on decisions we make today. We strive to restore wicosani (harmony) by working for:Social Justice for indigenous people, Environmental sustainability of global ecosystems and Healing across cultural divides. The Indigenous Wisdom Center represents collaborative efforts of advocates, allies and dreamers who are committed to growing capacity of existing programs and Enabling new programs that reflect indigenous values. Tiyospaye Winyan Maka is proud to be a part of this alliance.
In her capacity as community liaison, TWM Exec. Dir. Christinia Eala initiated a relationship between Colorado State University’s chapter of Engineers Without Borders and the Oglala Lakota Cultural and Economic Revitalization Initiative (OLCERI). Design specifications for an earth-ship style multipurpose center began in 2017, and we broke ground for construction in spring of 2018 on OLCERI’s location in Slim Buttes, the homestead of Director, Bryan Deans. Others who have come together to see this long-range dream realized include national networks of Permaculturists, Food Not Bombs, individual tribal members, and participants from other Lakota-run NGOs both on and off reservation.
SHARED VISIONS FOR EDUCATIONAL SOVEREIGNTY
Alliance partners with the IWC offer workshops in natural building alternatives and permaculture practices and are helping to establish a range of demonstration projects, many constructed during the annual Indigenous Wisdom and Permaculture Skills Convergence. Examples include an outdoor rocket stove, a walipini (serving as a green house to extend the growing season), a root cellar for food storage, and organic garden beds.
TWM looks to the completion of the Indigenous Wisdom Center to provide shared office space on Pine Ridge and to establish a staging area for community and family-based projects and tiyospaye-centered learning during the Summer Build season (see Homestead Assistance).
Additionally, vital to the continuity of the Lakota people, is to develop language immersion programs and specific curriculum developed by indigenous educators and elders.