We are dedicated to working with our young people to re-establish and strengthen their connections to Lakota traditions, stories, values and authentic culture identity. We must give them as many opportunities as possible to explore their identities and share their truths, from their own deeply personal struggles to their nation’s experiences with conflict. We also seek to share arts-related opportunities with them, from advanced education to professional development. That’s the only way to foster real healing, and to provide a vibrant and more secure future.
That’s why the Waniyetu Wowapi (Winter Count) Lakota Youth Arts and Culture Institute felt like an intuitive fit for us. Our institute, which we officially launched in September 2016, has been a natural evolution of our existing arts programming, which incorporates the free, public Waniyetu Wowapi Art Park and Art Walk, the annual RedCan graffiti jam, the Lakota Arts Fellowship and an extensive, innovative art internship program.