“Today’s tribal leaders were once the children of the community and will be its elders tomorrow. Native youth provide a special perspective on the world, and have an unique power and motivation to make a difference…”
–National Congress of American Indians
The Meskwaki Youth Development Program is committed to improving the quality of life for tribal youth who are residing on the Settlement and in surrounding communities by providing programs and activities that support our culture. By investing in youth and giving them a sense of place and tradition in the community, the department seeks to empower them to become bright and capable future leaders.
We are dedicated to providing tribal youth with opportunities and resources that help them realize and strengthen the skills they possess and develop new ones from which they can draw upon to make positive life choices as they grow. Our goal is to promote the overall well-being of our tribal youth and enhance their current standing among the tribe as valuable assets. We believe this program is vital to the tribe’s efforts to become the Meskwaki Settlement our ancestors envisioned for us.
Summer Youth Development Program:
One of MYP’s staple programs, the Summer Youth Development Program or SYEP
recruits high school/college participants to lead summer youth activities and completes special projects throughout the Meskwaki Nation. Each summer Meskwaki youth participants act as interns
throughout Tribal Operations and/or lead activities for children,
ages six through thirteen, over an eight week period. Inspiring and motivating, SYEP participants gain self-awareness, confidence and leadership skills while helping to create a stronger community for themselves and others.
MYP Youth Conference:
MYP held its first Youth Conference in 2016. Created so Meskwaki youth could draw strength from their culture, the conference focused on resilience and featured strong Meskwaki leaders.
Kids enjoyed gigantic indoor inflatable play areas, several speakers and presentations, department booths, door prizes, food and fun.
We live streamed it! See the event here!
Look for upcoming conferences coming soon.
See more about the MYP Youth Conference here!
MYP Community Powwow Demonstration:
Each year MYP hosts a community powwow demonstration at the South Tama Elementary School for students and teachers. Performing some of the Tribe’s traditional dances in front of fellow students, Meskwaki youth utilize the event to promote cultural unity and friendship.
2018 MYP Powwow Demonstration here!
2017 MYP Powwow Demonstrations here!
MYP Weekly Scheduled Meetings & Events:
During the school year, MYP hosts weekly evening and weekend events for Meskwaki youth including Middle School and High School Nights, Boy’s Council, Girl’s Circle and others. It hosts special events on weekends, and “out of school” days too. Check out the weekly youth calendar of events and/or Facebook for times and dates.
Values are standards or principles of behavior that are important in life. MYP is in agreement with, and has adopted as their own, the values as originally set forth by the Meskwaki Settlement School. They establishing a consistent value set by our community and are a critical step in the process of building a quality youth development program.
Miskawiteewenwi – Courage
We need courage to answer questions. We need courage to take our lives where our elders wish us to, to take the challenges life has in store for us and to pray – asking for guidance also takes some courage. Be courageous!
Tebanetiwiwenwi – Love
Love from the Creator will never change. We love one another.
Akwenemetiwiwenwi – Respect
Our parents, grandparents, elders, and teachers have always taught us to love and care for everyone. We show respect by not laughing at others, by not saying anything to hurt anybody, and by helping our elders. Above all, we show respect by listening to others even though we might not agree with them.
Tebwetamowenwi – Spirituality
Each day we look to the Creator for strength and guidance.
Nebwakawenwi – Wisdom
We learn as we grow. We learn from our successes and our failures. We learn from our elders and our ancestors.
Philosophical Approach (Edginton, C., Kowalski, C., & Randall, S., (2005). Youth work: Emerging perspectives in youth development. (pp.87-88). Champaign, IL: Sagamore Publishing L.L.C.
|Program Director||Tashina Azure|
|Youth Assistant/Culture||Kay Waseskuk|
|Summer Youth Enrichment Program Coordinator|
|Physical Address:||Mailing Address:||Phone: 641.484.5369|
|1641 305th Street
Tama, IA 52339
|349 Meskwaki Road
Tama, IA 52339