fbpx
 

SAN CARLOS, Ariz. — Even though they were wearing facial masks due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the smiles of some 900 Native youth could be seen coming from their eyes on the San Carlos Apache Indian Reservation. Their delight came from picking up school supplies and toys made possible by legendary NBA all-star A.C. Green who showed up to help give away the items.

Green, who is part Choctaw and Cherokee from his mother’s side of the family, donated the items through his A.C. Green Youth Foundation, which works to provide underserved youth and the communities they live in with resources, materials and support.

Want more Native News? Get the free daily newsletter today.

The school supplies and toys were distributed to Native American students in grades K-12 in the San Carlos Unified School District as part of a larger collective effort to offer aid Native American students across Arizona for the upcoming new school year.

“I was fortunate enough to help raise funds for the back-to-school supplies and toys,” Green told Native News Online on Wednesday afternoon. “I love what these schools are doing. They take a ‘whole person approach’ in education. This is important to me.”

Green is no stranger to Indian Country. For several years, he has attended the National Indian Gaming Association’s annual tradeshow and convention. Additionally, Green says he attended commencement ceremonies at Haskell Indian University in Lawrence, Kan. as a guest of NIGA Chairman Ernest Stevens, Jr.

“It has been an eye-opening experience for me to learn about the needs in Indian Country. They come in all sizes and shapes,” Green said.

Green played in the NBA for the Los Angeles Lakers, Phoenix Suns, Dallas Mavericks and Miami Heat. During his time with the Lakers, he won three championships in 1987, 1988 and 2000. Green holds the NBA record for most-consecutive games played with 1,192.

Tuesday’s event was also made possible through a collaboration with the Partnership with Native Americans, a Native-led nonprofit that partners with tribal programs to serve Native communities. Another collaborator was Arizona FACTS of Life, a nonprofit dedicated to guiding young people to success by providing developmental opportunities that may not otherwise be available to them. The organization serves youth in and around the Phoenix area and provides behavioral and preventive health services.

“It is so important right now with the pandemic running rampant to come in with something positive, something hopeful, especially in our Native American communities. This is something you can’t talk about it, you just have to be about, you just have to do it. So, I am just happy to be able to reach out to do as much as I can, along with our Arizona FACTS of Life, to make a difference wherever we can,” Green said on Tuesday.

Green says he will be on the Navajo Nation on Thursday in Pinon, Ariz. to give out more school supplies and toys.

More Stories Like This

San Manuel Band of Mission Indians Surprises Native Nonprofits with $1M in Donations on #GivingTuesday
Biden Affirms Commitment to Tribal Nations, Announces New Initiatives at White House Tribal Nations Summit
PHOTOS: The White House Tribal Nations Summit
WATCH: The White House Tribal Nations Summit 
Tribal Leaders to Attend First In-person White House Tribal Nations Summit in Six Years

You’re reading the first draft of history. 

November is  Native American Heritage Month in the United States. We feel like every month — and every day — is a reason for celebrating Native Americans and our heritage. That’s what we try to do here at Native News Online, with stories each day that celebrate, inform and uplift American Indian and Alaska Native people. Over the past year or so, we have been especially busy with three important reporting projects that are having an impact across Indian Country:

  • Indian Boarding Schools. We’ve reported and published more than 150 stories and special live stream video events to help shine a light on the dark era of boarding schools — and help create momentum for change.
  • Native Health Desk. Launched in January, this reporting initiative was created to heighten awareness of Native American health inequities and spotlight pockets of progress in Indian Country. So far we’ve reported and published nearly 120 stories and launched a monthly health newsletter that reaches more than 23,000 readers.  
  • Native Bidaske. In March, we launched this live stream interview program to highlight the work of Native Americans who are making news and leading change in Indian Country.  We have hosted guests from the federal government and Native rights advocates as well as Indigenous actors, comedians, journalists and models.   

We hope you will join us in celebrating Native American heritage and history this November and invite you to consider the old adage that “Journalism is the first draft of history.” If you appreciate the voice Native News Online gives to Native American people, we hope you will support our work with a donation so we can build our newsroom and continue to amplify Native voices and Native perspectives.

Any contribution — big or small — helps us remain a force for change in Indian Country and continue telling the stories that are so often ignored, erased or overlooked.  Most often, our donors make a one-time gift of $20 or more, while many choose to make a recurring monthly donation of $5 or $10.  Whatever you can do, it helps fund our Indigenous-led newsroom and our ability to cover Native news. 

Donate to Native News Online today and support independent Indigenous journalism. Thank you. 

About The Author
Levi Rickert
Author: Levi RickertEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Levi Rickert (Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation) is the founder, publisher and editor of Native News Online. Rickert was awarded Best Column 2021 Native Media Award for the print/online category by the Native American Journalists Association. He serves on the advisory board of the Multicultural Media Correspondents Association. He can be reached at [email protected]