SUBMITTED By CHLOE BLYTHE
The holiday season is often filled with a combination of work, shopping, decorating, family events, and holiday traditions. For the Jones-Bowman Leadership Award Fellows, a program funded by the Cherokee Preservation Foundation, one of their most important traditions is their annual group service project. The Fellows delivered 30 Jansport backpacks filled with supplies to the EBCI Family Services Department on Wednesday, Dec. 21.
Every year, the Fellows are charged with creating, planning, and executing a group community service project of their choosing. This project is planned over the summer and then completed sometime throughout the school year.
The 2016-2017 Jones-Bowman Fellows are Jacob Long, Faith Long, Rebecca Teesateskie, Brantly Junaluska, Caleb Teesateskie, Kayla Johnson, Michael Thompson, Tim Swayney, and Chloe Blythe.
This year, the Fellows chose to create a project that would provide backpacks filled with basic necessities to children who undergo emergency removal from their homes.
The Fellows raised money for this project through 50/50 ticket sales at the Cherokee Indian Fair and then used this money to purchase the supplies for the backpack kits. The money to buy the backpacks was generously donated by Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort. They were able to raise enough money to fill 30 backpacks that will be given to Family Services to use in emergency removal cases.
“I really loved being able to help do this project and know that I am helping the youth of our Tribe,” said first-year Fellow, Faith Long.