k’yuwáat’ajaay | connect


Three youth in Elim save fourth boy’s life

This summer, Brent Bradley (12), Logan Jemewouk (10), and Damion Takak (10) were crossing a creek in Elim when they saw six-year-old Trayce Saccheus lying face down in the water. As reported by Alaska News Source, the three older boys quickly shed their outer clothing and dove into the water to retrieve Trayce. While Trayve wasn’t initially conscious or responding, Logan and Brent performed CPR on Trayce until he started breathing on his own. Thanks to their heroics, Trayce back is alive and back at home.

Eklutna Tribe loses court decision for casino

In September, U.S. District Court Judge Dabney Friedrich ruled against the Eklutna Tribe in its effort to open a casino on tribally-owned land.

KTOO reported Judge Friedrich’s judgement that the eight acres were not considered “Indian land,” and therefore Indian gaming rules don’t apply.

The federal court decision can be read here.

Native model makes waves at the Met Gala, New York Fashion Week

As highlighted in Vogue — and countless online magazines and social media posts — Hän Gwich’in and Oglala Lakota model Quannah Chasinghorse made a big splash throughout New York Fashion Week and at the Met Gala to end the week.

At 19, Quannah has worked as a model and activist, and currently lives and works out of Fairbanks.

“It’s extremely important to represent and bring authentic and true American culture to this year’s theme, as Native American culture has been appropriated and misrepresented in fashion so many times,” says Quannah to Vogue.

Alaska Pacific University launches course on Indigenous land stewardship

In a unique offering for the Fall 2021 semester, Alaska Pacific University is offering a course titled “Indigenous Land Stewardship: Creating Meaningful Collaborations Across Alaska.” The course is a partnership between APU, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Northern Latitudes Partnership, and Alaska Conservation Foundation. The course is team-taught and relies on expertise from Indigenous leadership.

APU announced the course is virtual for the first semester, and will be offered again in 2022.

Alaska Native Corporations ruled eligible for CARES Act funding

In June, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Alaska Native corporations are eligible for CARES Act funds. The legal battles began after several Tribes filed lawsuits to prevent Alaska Native corporations from receiving CARES Act funds.

Indian Country Today outlines the many challenges the corporations are now facing with the ruling, including distributing the funds in a timeline dramatically shortened because of the legal battles. While many Tribes and organizations received funds over a year ago, corporations only started receiving funds this summer, and must distribute the funds by December 30 or lose them. Alaska also faces significant logistical challenges such as extended shipping time.