From the Minnesota Indian Women’s Sexual Assault Coalition
Two staff members went two Minnesota Tribal communities for their local pow wow. We set up tables and brought our outreach materials, including posters that show Native Women and speak to sex trafficking. We also brought our Shawl Project-which brings awareness to the people about sexual violence and helps to remember that this is not our tradition. We were welcomed in both Tribal Communities, including Fond du Lac- and Upper Sioux. We wore the shawls and we brought many extra shawls we asked local women to dance with us into the circle and a story about the shawls and our work – was read by the announcer. These events have hundreds of Tribal Community Members in attendance. In Upper Sioux we were honored and asked to stand next to the Veterans which is a high place of honor. In Fond du lac we were asked by a spiritual leader to bring shawls and he read the statement to the community at least three times, and he called for the healing of all victims of sexual assault -and told the community that the healing starts now-today. It was a powerful experience for all involved.