Last New Year's Eve, we found out about a documentary that was raising money on the crowd funding site Kickstarter.com. The documentary, Racing the Rez, was $11,215 shy of the $15,000 they needed at the time. We published this story about this wonderful project that featured two boys cross country teams on the Navajo and Hopi reservations as they battled to be state champs. Nine days later, director Brian Trujillo and his team saw their funding drive make up the $11,215 they needed. They have shown the film all over the country, and you can know purchase it off their website.
We'd like to draw similar attention to another great project, this one spotlighted on the crowd funding site Indiegogo.com. The Harvest Moon American Indian Festival, a non-profit fundraising urban American Indian music and art festival, which is hoping to raise $10,000 in the next 22 days. The festival highlights the Native presence in Kansas City, with proceeds going to the White Buffalo Scholarship Youth Fund.
"Last year, Harvest Moon American Indian Festival made history," they write on their Indiegogo.com page, "according to Kevin Gover of the Smithsonian Institute, as the first of its kind anywhere in America!" They cite statistics that show 70% of American Indians have moved off the reservations and into the cities seeking better employment and more opportunities. "They have brought culture, music, arts, crafts and more to the urban environment. Our non-profit has a mission to bring this awareness to the public and promote economic opportunity for urban American Indians."
This year's theme is "2012 Spiritual Awakening, meaning that the time is right to awaken to the intuitive call to come back to nature, respect the Earth and live lightly on it," they write on their page. The Harvest Moon American Indian Festival celebrates and promotes the many achievements of urban American Indians with Grammy and Nammy award-winning musicians, crafters, dancers and artists. This year, artists such as poet, musician and artist Joy Harjo and actor, drummer, and singer Mo Brings Plenty will bring their plentiful gifts to the festival.