The National Congress of American Indians holds in high regard the accomplishments, potential, and impact of Native Youth. As an important part of tribal communities, tribal leaders have, for time immemorial, strived to ensure that youth have the tools and resources to positively impact their communities. In addition to implementing a number of year-round, ongoing programs, NCAI strives to support events which bring youth together on a National scale and celebrate youth achievements.
In 2011 and 2012 NCAI collaborated with the Department of Justice to host the National Indian Youth Summit. NCAI also invited the winners of the White House Champions of Change competition to the Embassy of Tribal Nations to honor them and their commitment to their communities. Also, NCAI often hosts school groups from throughout Indian Country at the embassy to teach youth about American Indian Policy and advocacy for tribes in Washington DC.
Through a number of channels, NCAI seeks to support Native Youth in their efforts to help build a brighter future for Indian Country.
- NCAI Youth Comission
- National Native Youth Training Collaborative
- NDN Spark
- Internships and Fellowships
NCAI’s Youth Commission offers youth ages 16-23 the opportunity to engage on National scale along-side tribal leaders to help address the issues facing Indian Country. Established in 1997, the NCAI Youth Commission has been a space for tribal youth to come together and discuss solutions to the unique challenges they face within their communities.
NCAI is establishing the National Native Youth Training Collaborative to support Native youth and tribal efforts to foster leaders of tomorrow. The goal of this project is to increase the number of American Indian and Alaska Native youth who are prepared with political knowledge and skills to become national and tribal leaders, and to identify strategies for improving policy and data on issues of significance to American Indian and Alaska Native youth. The collaborative will
- Provide participants with skills and resources to:
- Advance youth success in financial literacy, resiliency, and policy advocacy;
- Set a national native youth policy agenda; and
- Work collaboratively with policymakers, researchers, and others involved with developing policies and practices that affect Native youth.
- Partner with federal agencies, advocacy organizations, and community partners to ensure quality data collection, analysis, and reporting on the status and experiences of Native youth.
Learn from tribal leaders.
Use virtual technology for educational and networking experiences
In late 2012, NCAI launched NDNSpark, an online community for Native youth to use as they develop into the next generation of leaders. The platform is designed to help youth set and achieve goals that will enhance their everyday life. Join NDNSpark
Fellowships and Internships
NCAI offers fellowships and internships for students and young professionals to earn valuable experience working with the nation’s oldest, largest, and most representative organization, advocating on behalf of tribal governments. Fellowships last 11 months, while internships are arranged on a case-by-case basis.
Read More about Fellowships and Internships