-- The Pender Times, Thursday April 28, 2022 Volume 136, No. 10
The National Trust for Historic Preservation Telling the Full History Preservation Fund announced its award of $50,000 to Dr. Susan La Flesche Picotte Center in Walthill for its Tribal Youth Voices Matter Project. Only 80 of these grants are given to select organizations nationwide whose projects help preserve, interpret and activate historic places to tell the stories of underrepresented groups in our nation.
The purpose of the Tribal Youth Voices Matter Project is to engage the youth of the Omaha Tribe in the restoration and renovation of the Dr. Susan La Flesche Picotte Center through support from the elders and artists of the Omaha Tribe. The youth will help tell the extraordinary story of Dr. Susan and assist in the planning, development and design of the youth programs. As part of a youth advisory group, they will voice and infuse their opinions in the development of cultural, wellness and educational programming.
"We are thrilled to receive this grant to support the Tribal Youth Voices Matter Project. It provides the opportunity for the youth of the Omaha Tribe to continue the legacy of Dr. Susan, while receiving support from Tribal Elders and artists of the community. It also allows participating youths to be reimbursed for sharing their time and talents, as well as the Tribal Elders and artists," said Keith Mahaney, president of the board of directors for the Dr. Susan La Flesche Picotte Center.
The board has selected Vida Stabler as project manager. She is a member of the Omaha Tribe and an Educator at the Omaha Nation Public School at Walthill.
The Susan La Flesche Picotte Center has established several goals for the Tribal Youth Voices Matter Project. These goals are to include the voices of at least eight tribal youth in the development of youth programming that reflects the opinions and needs vocalized by tribal youth and engage youth with the support of Tribal Elders and artists to create a center that is truly by them and for them.
The Dr. Susan La Flesche Picotte Center is in the midst of a capital campaign to provide funds to restore and repurpose the 1913 hospital originally built by Dr. Susan, the first Native American physician. When complete, it will celebrate the legacy of Dr. Susan and provide space for services for the residents of the Walthill community and the Omaha Tribe of Nebraska. This grant will ensure the youth of the community is engaged in this restoration project and continued youth programming once the Center opens in late 2023.