Native American Heritage Month

November 16, 2021 / 5 mins read

Since 1990, November has been nationally recognized as Native American Heritage Month.

For non-Indigenous people, this month is a dedication to bettering personal relationships with the lands we occupy and the Indigenous communities to whom these lands rightfully belong. We partake in this month by unveiling the true history and current conditions of colonization — namely the invisibilization, murder, disappearance and erasure of Indigenous people and culture, as well as the abuse and theft of their sacred lands, waters and air. Greater food insecurity and worsened health and environmental impacts experienced by these tribes and other exploited people can be attributed to such atrocities.

Though November should be a month filled with pure celebration and joy for Indigenous communities, the reality is that for many this is a time of mourning. It is important, then, to take this time to reflect on how to foster meaningful relationships with the Indigenous communities who continue to steward and protect the land we settle on, and to learn more about the history of the U.S. from the perspectives and experiences of Indigenous people.

We must address how we continue to perpetuate White supremacy and colonial violence. This month, and everyday, we will challenge ourselves to learn more and do more to be in a relationship with Indigenous people and be mindful of the ways our privileges contribute to their erasure. This begins with simple actions that make all the difference:

Below are a few resources to aid in taking these small but meaningful actions. Please refer to them as you form your personal reflections this Native American Heritage Month and in the future.


This article is reposted in part from a post on the Oregon Food Bank's blog.

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