Sometimes I think back to our folks and the winters they spent in our homeland. The winters had to be harsh but the warmth of the roundhouses, taking care of livestock, working on clothing and tools kept everyone warm and dry. I imagine, around the fire the stories of our people and the songs of our past. It had to be a hard time but good also. We come from good stock…Chaticks-si-Chaticks!
The Tribe continues to move ahead in the midst of trying times. Our expansion to Stonewolf with the downturn in the economy has made us tighten our belts here in the Nation. We have not lost any jobs, but we are carefully watching our budget and are making sure we get the most out of our program dollars. We want to continue to meet the needs of our people in the programs that we have. There is also an across the board cutting of resources in the Federal Government. All of our Tribal Nations are feeling the impact of fewer dollars and programs to the Tribes. That is why it is imperative we continue to advocate and lobby our congressmen and those who have authority to help us. It’s important to be at the listening sessions and consultations to be able to ask the tough questions and get answers from our Trust agents. We have had great Pawnee leaders who continued to stay informed and brought back valuable information to our Nation, they were known as voices of all the Tribes not only the Pawnees. In that, I continue to work on the health side. I sit on the IHS and HHS committee’s which allows the Pawnee voice to be heard. I’m glad Angela Thompson sits on the BIA budget committee which funds many of our programs. We need our Council to stay engaged and on the forefront of the changes happening in our Country that affects the Pawnee Nation.
The Campground project was passed by Council to begin the process of updating and expanding our Campgrounds. It is not all final, but we are looking to build a permanent arbor, new bathroom facilities, RV hookups, update the electrical grid and create a walking track. It will be an exciting time once we have the facilities to be outdoors and have our dances and other activities there. We look forward to having a keen “O” and showers!
Our prayers go out to you. Sickness has been severe for many. Some are dealing with the loss of loved ones. I hope this Chaticks finds you in a good way. Attius is good. He continues to look down with favor upon the Pawnee Nation. Spring is on the way! Warm sunshine and cool breezes…
W. Bruce Pratt, President