By SCOTT MCKIE B.P.
ONE FEATHER STAFF
The spirit of working together was in the air as the Cherokee Preservation Foundation (CPFdn) held its 8th Annual Community Celebration at the Cherokee Youth Center on Friday, May 7.
“Can you believe it? This is our 8th annual celebration,” said Susan Jenkins, CPFdn executive director. “This is wonderful. This is a celebration for our grantees. It’s about the money we have provided and the good work going on by our grantees.”
She thanked CPFdn staff Hwenieko Walkingstick, Alicia Jacobs, and Monica Wachacha for their work as well as the Cherokee Youth Center staff and the NAIWA group for help with Friday’s celebration.
Luke D. Hyde, CPFdn board chairman, commented, “It’s an honor for me to be here. We do things better if we work together as a community. Let’s keep doing things to improve the quality of life in this community.”
Various grantee organizations were set up during the event to showcase their accomplishments and to share how their grant dollars were spent. Three programs in particular gave special presentations during the event including: Jones Bowman Fellows, the Sequoyah Fund, and representatives from the Costa Rica Eco-Study Tour.
Bruce Martin, of Longhouse Funeral Home in Cherokee, spoke briefly on how the Sequoyah Fund was able to help his family start their business. “We needed funeral services here on the reservation,” he said adding that the idea for the business was hatched during a family dinner.
“We have actually been able to realize, in a short amount of time, a dream that we had as a family.”
Deb Mintz and Tony Walkingstick gave a brief presentation on the Costa Rica Eco-Study Tour. “The trip was fun, but it’s a lot of work,” said Mintz who related the group got an opportunity to interact with a local indigenous Tribe in Costa Rica. “We’re really not that different from each other.”
For more information on the CPFdn, call (828) 497-5550 or visit www.cpfdn.org.
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