Indigeneity is a Native-led Program within Bioneers that promotes Indigenous knowledge and approaches to solve the earth’s most pressing environmental and social issues through respectful dialogue. By fostering a broader understanding of indigenous perspectives, we are building a network of allies to protect and restore traditional homelands. We do this by bringing people together, making original Indigenous-content media, fostering Native youth leadership, and developing learning materials for students and lifelong learners.
Indigenous peoples are the original “bioneers.” Since our founding in New Mexico, Bioneers has been fundamentally shaped and guided by Indigenous knowledge, participants and partners.
Our Native-led Indigeneity program promotes the leadership, cultural survival, human rights, land rights, Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) and cultural wisdom of First Peoples. We all belong to mother earth., and Indigenous cultures carry knowledge, practices and wisdom crucial to navigating today’s unprecedented global crisis.
Indigenous Peoples also carry what’s sometimes called “The Original Instructions,” invaluable guiding principles, values, ethics, social processes and tools for how a culture or society can organize itself in relation to place, embody kinship, and practice peace.
The Indigeneity program invites support for Indigenous Peoples as the guardians of lands that contain as much as 80 percent of the world’s remaining biodiversity, and are the razor’s edge of the development of both clean and dirty energy. The program supports all peoples to explore where their ancestral ties lie, examine the history of colonization within their own roots, which requires a respect for the intellectual property and cultural privacy of First Peoples.
Our annual Indigenous Forum within the Bioneers Conference provides a unique space for in-depth explorations of the most important issues and solutions in Indian Country. The Indigenous Forum has become an annual touchstone for Native leaders and non-Native allies to communicate and to create and grow strategic alliances.
We produce and distribute extensive media from conference and Indigenous Forum presentations and interviews, including radio shows from our annual series, our Indigeneity Youtube channel, the acclaimed anthology book Original Instructions and other publications We serve Indigenous and mainstream communities, educators, youth, and many others with authentic tools for understanding and teaching contemporary Indigenous issues.
We produce regular one-of-a-kind TEK intensive workshops for hands-on learning and training in invaluable traditional practices.
We work directly with students and educators to create an educational model for cross-cultural understanding between Native and non-Native students. We provide educators and lifelong learners access to free classroom-ready coursework and teaching materials.
We partner with U.S. Indigenous communities to offer Rights of Nature legal trainings and governance practices.
One of our best hopes is that today we have both traditional Indigenous wisdom and modern science to help us learn again to lovingly and patiently attune our hands to the heartbeat of the land, teaching us anew the ancient ways.
Past Organizational Projects with an Indigenous focus include:
Since 1990, Indigenous visionaries from around the world have shared traditional ecological knowledge-based insights at the annual Bioneers conference and other special events. Since it was established in 2007, the Bioneers Indigeneity Program has grown into a go-to source to access accurate and contemporary depictions of Indigenous Peoples from diverse backgrounds working towards ecological renewal informed by spirituality. Today, the significant indigenous presence in the Bioneers community is truly global, representing elders, activists, youth, scholars, healers, and spiritual leaders from over 100 Indigenous communities worldwide. The Indigeneity Program has cultivated a rich repository of over 250 videos, transcripts and audio recordings showcasing Indigenous visionaries from around the world sharing indigenous approaches to environmental, human rights, and social equity issues. This one-of-a-kind collection of authentic, indigenous voices has the potential to continue to impact grassroots and international efforts to restore planet and people for many years to come.
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