Ending the Silence

As a community, we are reckoning with the devastating legacy of Indian boarding schools. Recent discoveries of multiple mass graves at sites across the North American continent reveal the extent and cruelty of those efforts to break our Native families and communities. Both governmental agencies and religious institutions orchestrated the extermination of our Indigenous children and youth. 

United Indians of All Tribes Foundation stand with our First Nations, Alaskan, and Native Indigenous relatives. Our programs offer tangible steps families can take to heal the wounds of our past. Every family engaged in home visiting reclaims Indigenous ways of parenting. Every foster child involved in our cultural connections dismantles a colonial mindset. Every parent who asks about developmental screening is learning how to advocate for their child in a system that was not built for them. Every young adult who strives to reach their personal, housing, and employment goals exemplifies empowerment. Every family who finds stable housing defies rapid gentrification in our neighborhoods. Every job seeker and veteran who advances in their chosen field beats the odds in a game that feels rigged. Every Elder who advises us strengthens intergenerational bonds and ensures the transference of knowledge. Every program and event we host offers a path to healing for our Indigenous residents in the City of Seattle. In our 51 years of service, we have welcomed each and every boarding school survivor seeking help, offering them connections to culture, food for the soul, and a place to heal.

We hold all life sacred. We know that every child matters. We ask for action as we mourn. We call for accountability from those institutions who perpetuated these horrors. Though nothing can change what happened or bring justice to our little ones who never made it home, our story does not end at the boarding schools.

Please join us on September 30 by wearing orange in remembrance of our ancestors’ resilience during the boarding school era. Our Indigenous Peoples’ Day theme, “Our Existence is Our Resistance,” comes from that same acknowledgment. On October 11, we are hosting a safe and healthy drive through event at our beloved Daybreak Star Cultural Center. Our staff members are handing out #EveryChildMatters bracelets to community members and program participants to wear as a visible reminder to all that we are creating and sustaining generational healing.

We are still here.

May we continue to heal.

United Indians of All Tribes Foundation

Roof Replacement at Daybreak Star!

Yesterday marked the first day of work on replacing the flat roof of Daybreak Star! Teams are hard at work carrying out the installation process.

The existing roof was the one originally installed when Daybreak Star was constructed back in 1976. While it held up remarkably well, the roof recently developed several leaks, meaning a replacement was due. The new roof will fix these problems and will also significantly improve insulation. It’s an exciting development for the building!

Yesterday was the material load-in day for the project. The roof replacement is scheduled to be completed over the course of the next few weeks.

Daybreak Star Veterans BBQ

Veterans BBQ flyer

United Indians is delighted to invite all American Indian/Alaska Native Veterans and their families to the Daybreak Star Veterans BBQ! Come along for a day of festivities: we’ll have free food, program t-shirts, and challenge coins. We’re excited to have you!

For more information or to enroll in the program, contact Rich Summer at rsummers@unitedindians.org.

Yup’ik Jen

The Sacred Circle Gallery is pleased to showcase the extraordinary work of Yup’ik artist, Jennifer Angaiak Wood. Jen is of Yup’ik, Irish, and Italian descent, and was born and raised in Fairbanks, AK. The Yup’ik side of her family comes from Tununak, AK, on the coast of the Bering Sea. Jennifer started carving masks when she took an Alaska Native Art class in high school, and has been mostly self-taught after the unexpected passing of her teacher, Ron Manook. Since moving to the Seattle area in 2015, she has met and worked with other artists, who are helping her learn to use more traditional tools such as bent knives and adzes. Jennifer’s inspirations include historic masks, stories, and her time spent in Tununak growing up. She usually adds modern materials and concepts to her work, and she uses her art as a way to connect with her Yup’ik heritage and bring a little bit of Yup’ik history into the modern world. She has recently expanded her art practice to include printmaking and painting, though masks are her primary means of artistic expression.

Jen’s solo exhibit will be at the Sacred Circle Gallery at Daybreak Star Indian Cultural Center (5011 Bernie Whitebear Way, Seattle, WA 98199) from July through September. Her limited edition lino prints are for sale now at our new Ballard Art Gallery, 5337 Ballard Avenue NW. 

Click here to learn more and keep up to date with the Sacred Circle Gallery.

Foster Care School Supply Reimbursement Program

United Indians of All Tribes Foundation has a grant for reimbursement of school supplies, clothes, or after school programs for NATIVE Foster Youth who are enrolled in K through 12.

All you need to know about reimbursements:

  • Students must be Native American, Pacific Islander, or Alaskan Native
  • Students must be enrolled in K-12
  • Students must be in King County, Washington
  • Must provide original receipts
  • Receipts must be dated between 6/1/2021 – 12/15/2021
  • Receipts must show date, amount of transaction, and item descriptions
  • The maximum reimbursement is $500
  • Reimbursements will be made payable to Foster Care Family who submitted the application
  • Reimbursements will be made within 4 weeks of United Indians of All Tribes Foundation’s receipt of completed application with original receipts.

Click here for Application and mail to UIATF, attn: Finance, PO BOX 99100, Seattle, WA 98139

Daybreak Star Radio

Daybreak Star Radio Network is Indigenizing the Airwaves

Daybreak Star Radio Network (DBSRN) will be going officially on air on July 10, 2021. The public is invited to celebrate the occasion and to experience the station firsthand. The event will start at 1:00pm at Sacred Circle Art Gallery Ballard, 5337 Ballard Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98107.

The grand opening is in conjunction with the official grand opening of the Sacred Circle Art Gallery Ballard. Both DBSRN and Sacred Circle Art Gallery are programs of the United Indians of All Tribes Foundation, a Washington nonprofit corporation and a 501(c)(3). Founded in 1970, United Indians of All Tribes Foundation provides an extensive array of culturally responsive services and programming to Seattle and King County’s urban Native community. DJ BigRez will be streaming Native American music live during the Grand Opening from 1pm to 5pm.

Daybreak Star Radio Network is an Internet Streaming Radio Stations that has musical programming ranging from traditional Native flute and drums to rock, hip-hop, EDM, and more. Daybreak Star will rise and expose the world to NDN music and culture that has survived, developed, and grown. Apps for both iOS and Android coming soon.

About Daybreak Star Radio Network

Daybreak Star Radio Network’s mission is to provide educational, cultural, language arts, and music programming that reconnect Indigenous people to their heritage by strengthening their sense of belonging and significance as Native people.

‘Visions of a Makah’ by Frank Peterson now open in the Sacred Circle Gallery

Opening April 1 in the Sacred Circle Gallery at Daybreak Star Indian Cultural Center, is a collection of work by local Makah artist, Frank Peterson. Frank says his work is meant to find a balance in the abstract, adding the spiritual aspects of his heritage with life experiences. Growing up, he spent quality time in Neah Bay on the Makah reservation learning from his elders. He cherishes his time spent there as it affirms the connections it provides to his ancestors.

UIATF stands with the Black Lives Matters movement

George Floyd
Breonna Taylor
Tony McDade
Ahmaud Arbery

Four precious lives were taken and added to the long list of senseless killings in our society.

We stand united with the Black Lives Matters movement in the same way allies stood with our Native American activists who fought for and established a land base here at Daybreak Star Indian Cultural Center. Initial planning for that campaign happened at the Filipino Community Hall in South Seattle. Black Panthers showed their support by facing military police in solidarity with us. Volunteers from many marginalized communities tended to our wounded, tired, and hungry activists at Resurrection City so that they could return to the protest. We seek to do the same. 

Our founder, Bernie Whitebear, was part of the Gang of Four. He joined forces with Larry Gossett, Bob Santos, and Roberto Maestas to challenge and change the Seattle establishment. From the late ‘60s through 1980, these leaders and communities demanded equity and social justice for People of Color, both men and women. They didn’t let the system pit them against each other. Instead, they came together as a powerful multi-racial group. 

Black and Indigenous communities are deeply connected through our experiences with colonialism, violence, oppression, systemic racism, and White supremacy. We join Black Lives Matters to echo and amplify their voices. We both come from proud histories of mobilization and protest. The sacrifices of our Elders and our ancestors ensured our existence today. They believed that there is no justice and no peace until we are all free. So do we.

Black lives matter.

United Indians of All Tribes Foundation                               

UIATF Modification of Services in Response to COVID-19

Dear friends and relatives, 

We hope this letter finds you healthy and well. Due to the emergence of the novel Coronavirus and concern for our staff and community, United Indians of All Tribes Foundation leadership has decided that the best course of action is to close our Daybreak Star and Columbia City sites to the public until it is deemed safe to reopen. This closure will be effective Monday, March 15, 2020. Developing updates will be forthcoming.

Many of our services cannot close. We have individuals counting on us daily, and we plan to meet their needs to the best of our ability. Our most essential services, such as the Labateyah Youth Home, Foster Care, and Homelessness Prevention programs will remain operational, though some practices may shift. All other non-essential services will occur in alternative forms until we can safely resume traditional procedures and high levels of contact with the public. 

Our primary concerns are keeping our community healthy, and reducing risk factors. UIATF has been taking constant care to stay on top of this situation by hiring additional staff to help sanitize workplaces, encouraging staff to work from home, and addressing the needs of staff and the community as they arise. 

This Public Health emergency has shaped our year. We have chosen to cancel or postpone many of our events in order to prioritize the health and safety of our community. These events are essential to our continued financial stability, and we hope we can count on your support and attendance at future events once the situation calms. We know that many people are feeling the effects of this virus in their daily lives, and encourage all of you to do what you can to aid your friends and neighbors. We must continue to show up to support each other, as many people, businesses and organizations will feel the ramifications of these realities for months to come. 

Thank you for your understanding, support, and care for the community. We will be fully operational as soon as possible.

Mike Tulee, Executive Director

Affordable Housing at Fort Lawton: Bernie’s Dream a Reality

At the time of the 1970 Takeover, Bernie Whitebear, United Indians’ founder, conceived of an expansive vision for the future of Seattle’s Fort Lawton: reclaiming Native land to build a cultural center, an art gallery, and affordable housing for our community. 

While Bernie oversaw the execution of much of that vision during his lifetime, the dream of affordable housing remained deferred for decades.  Meanwhile, due to systemic inequalities facing American Indian and Alaska Native individuals in King County, AI/AN are seven times more likely to be homeless than other races.  And Native children in Seattle live in poverty at nearly three times that of the community at large.   

Excitingly, last week the Seattle City Council voted to begin the redevelopment of Fort Lawton into affordable housing units as the culmination of a 15-year dialogue with United Indians, Catholic Housing Services, Habitat for Humanity, and other community partners.

Mayor Jenny Durkan at the press conference.

Mayor Durkan and community members convened at Fort Lawton to commemorate this momentous occasion. Mayor Durkan said, “As I was driving over here I could not help but think about my friend Bernie Whitebear. What we’re doing today, it feels like it’s 15 years, but we’re standing on the shoulders of people who had the vision long before us.”

United Indians’ Executive Director Michael Tulee spoke as well, highlighting the growing problem of housing affordability in Seattle. “Year by year,” Dr. Tulee said, “our middle-income people are being pushed out further. In the last decade, home prices have increased by 60%. Fortunately, Mayor Durkan and the City of Seattle have seen this as something they needed to take on.”

Mayor Durkan signs legislation to begin the Fort Lawton Redevelopment Project

The new Fort Lawton Redevelopmentwill feature more than 238 mixed-income affordable housing units, including 85 supportive housing units for older adults who have experienced homelessness (including veterans), and 150 townhouses for families earning up to 60-80% of the median income. Along with housing, the Fort Lawton plan calls for increased parks and recreation space; and supportive services for veterans, people experiencing homelessness, and Elders. The Fort Lawton redevelopment will be an incredible opportunity for not only the Native community but for all of Seattle to address the city’s housing access and affordability challenges.

In 1970, Bernie Whitebear and other Native activists “reclaimed the land known as Fort Lawton in the name of all American Indians by right of discovery.” Since then, United Indians of All Tribes Foundation has been dedicated to providing social, cultural, and educational services that reconnect Indigenous people to their heritage. In collaboration with the City of Seattle, Catholic Housing Services, Habitat for Humanity, and other partners, we look forward to expanding the scope of our culturally responsive services and retaining a presence for the urban Native community on this Indigenous land.