KU’s First Nations Student Association plans events in honor of Indigenous Peoples Day this week and next

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An Indigenous student organization at the University of Kansas has events in honor of Indigenous Peoples Day lined up this week and next.

The annual holiday — Monday, Oct 10 this year — is to recognize and celebrate the Indigenous people, communities and cultures that are ever present.

First Nations Student Association (FNSA) at KU started the week off on Monday with a social media blast, posting and reposting information and messages of solidarity. Visit FNSA’s Twitter account and Facebook page to check out what they have shared.

FNSA will continue on Tuesday by sharing messages on campus with sidewalk chalk. They will host a tipi raising event at 7:30 a.m. Wednesday on the lawn in front of Strong Hall.

The group is encouraging students to attend a talk about healing from federal Indian boarding schools. Deidre Whiteman (Meskwaki, Dakota, Ojibwe, Hidatsa), who is the director of research and education at the National Native American Boarding School Healing Coalition, will speak at 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 13 at Haskell Auditorium.

Students will have a table at the KU women’s soccer game at 7 p.m. Thursday at Rock Chalk Park, where they will share resources and information about the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women (MMIW) movement.

This week, Native students are also encouraged to wear their moccasins and ribbon skirts or shirts Wednesday, wear their braids and Indigenous gear Thursday, and wear their beadwork and powwow shirts Friday, according to an event flier.

Next Tuesday, KU’s Native American Initiatives and Office of Multicultural Affairs will host an Indigenous Peoples Day Celebration with guest speaker Jason Champagne, Citizen Red Lake Band of Chippewa. Champagne is the owner of Native Chef LLC and will be serving food at the event.

There will also be hand games, board games and button-making, as well as episodes playing of the Hulu original show “Reservation Dogs,” a comedy-drama series that follows the adventures of four Native teenagers in rural Oklahoma.

The celebration is scheduled for noon to 4 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 18 at KU’s Office of Multicultural Affairs.

Champagne will speak at 1 p.m., sharing “his story that led to his passion of helping other Native Americans understand and incorporate basic nutrition strategies and merge traditional foods into contemporary food styles,” according to an event flier.

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Maya Hodison (she/her), equity reporter, can be reached at mhodison (at) lawrencekstimes (dot) com. Read more of her work for the Times here. Check out her staff bio here.

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