This past week, The Cherokee Youth Council represented the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians at the United National Indian Tribal Youth (UNITY) conference in Phoenix, Ariz.. The six representatives traveled for the first time to Arizona to perform two traditional dances in front of over 1,000 youth from across the nation, during the cultural exchange portion of the conference.
The youth were immersed in community development workshops along with spiritual exercises from key note speakers. Throughout the conference, the youth were also electing the 2012-13 UNITY Executive Committee that is nationally recognized.
This year, Simon Montelongo was elected to represent the Southeast Area Caucus, making him the first Eastern Band of Cherokee Indian to be on the national board for UNITY.
“Simon is a tremendous leader in our community and we are so proud of him for taking on such an amazing national position” says Sky Kanott, program manager. “Our youth council strives to empower youth within our community and to give them a voice even beyond the Qualla Boundary.”
– Cherokee Youth Council