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6 Local Indigenous American Nonprofits You Should Know

Jameela Syed

In honor of Native American Heritage Month, we’re sharing a list of 6 local Indigenous serving and led organizations you should know — not just because of the critical services they provide, but also in light of the lack of philanthropic support for Native American causes across the United States. According to a study by Native Americans in Philanthropy, Native Americans make up 2.9% of the U.S. population, but only receive 0.4% of philanthropic dollars nationally.

The nonprofits below offer key resources across our communities, from labor organizing to providing food for families, access to healthcare, cultural enrichment, and more.

1. The American Indian Community House

Founded in 1969, the American Indian Community House works to improve and promote the well-being of the American Indian Community and to increase the visibility of American Indian cultures in an urban setting in order to cultivate awareness, understanding and respect.

2. Lenape Center

For more than thirteen years, the Lenape Center  has been creating and developing exhibitions, public art, symposia, music, opera, theater, and educational resources (including workshops, lectures, and curricula) dedicated to Lenape culture.

3. Mexican Coalition for the Empowerment of Youth & Families (BKO Partner)

The Mexican Coalition serves over 18,000 families annually, providing a range of services including culturally appropriate food distribution, legal services, and preventative health support. Notably, they also provide services and support for speakers of the Indigenous language K’iche’, a minority language which falls outside of New York City’s ten official languages for city service access.

4. Mixteca (BKO Partner)

Mixteca offers a dynamic variety of programs and services that respond to the specific needs of immigrant families. From culturally informed mental health and wellness programs to adult education and advocating for immigrant rights, Mixteca is building a supportive environment for our growing Mexican and Latin-American immigrant communities.

5. Urban Indigenous Collective

The Urban Indigenous Collective supports access to culturally-tailored health and wellness services for self-identified Indigenous peoples in Lenapehoking and the greater New York City area (NY, NJ, CT, PA) through community-based participatory research, advocacy, community programming, and direct services.

6. Worker’s Justice Project (BKO Partner)

Worker’s Justice Project (WJP) is a worker-led nonprofit that advocates for better working conditions in New York City, especially for migrant workers whose precarious situations make it easier for employers to exploit their labor. Landmark victories by WJP’s organizing arm, Los Deliveristas, include securing the rights for food delivery workers to use the bathroom while on the job and setting a minimum, living wage for delivery workers across NYC.