Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

First Nations Development Institute Receives $250,000 AARP Foundation Grant to Expand Project That Addresses Hunger and Food Security of Native American Elders

LONGMONT, Colorado (February 25, 2014) – First Nations Development Institute (First Nations) today announced it has received a $250,000 grant from AARP Foundation to fund a project to address hunger, nutrition and food insecurity among Native American tribal elders. The new grant expands work that began in 2012 when AARP Foundation provided First Nations with a $187,660 grant under First Nations’ Native American Food Security project.

Under the first grant, First Nations awarded funding to four projects that have been successfully completed and evaluated. They were to the Ponca Tribe of Oklahoma, the Pueblo of Nambe and Santo Domingo Pueblo in New Mexico, and Sipaulovi Development Corporation (Hopi) in Arizona. Under the new grant, First Nations will award funding to additional Native American projects. A proposal process is now underway for those grants.

The Native American Food Security project assists Native American tribes or organizations working to eliminate food insecurity among senior populations. National statistics document that Native Americans continue to experience high rates of poverty, contributing to significant food insecurity in many Native American communities. According to the most recent American Community Survey, about 26% of American Indians live at or below the poverty line. The same survey indicates that roughly 12% of all Native Americans living in poverty are age 55 and older. Other studies conducted by the National Resource Center on Native American Aging note that Native American seniors suffer from higher rates of obesity, diabetes and other negative health indicators when compared to other senior groups in the United States.

“Our grant from AARP Foundation bore significantly positive results during the first round, and we are excited and very thankful that the foundation has provided additional funding for this effort,” said First Nations President Michael E. Roberts. “With a combination of direct grants and technical assistance and training made possible by the new funding, we will grow this project to increase the quantity and healthful quality of food for tribal elders while documenting the best models for broader dissemination throughout Indian Country.”

“AARP Foundation’s $250,000 grant to First Nations helps bolster the continued efforts of both of our organizations in the fight against older adult hunger,” said AARP Foundation President Lisa Marsh Ryerson. “By aligning with an organization that has a proven record in hunger relief, we are pleased to be able do it again and we are looking forward to watching the new programs grow further and fight hunger for Native American elders.”

About AARP Foundation

AARP Foundation is working to win back opportunity for struggling Americans 50+ by being a force for change on the most serious issues they face today: housing, hunger, income and isolation. By coordinating responses to these issues on all four fronts at once, and supporting them with vigorous legal advocacy, the Foundation serves the unique needs of those 50+ while working with local organizations nationwide to reach more people, work more efficiently and make resources go further. AARP Foundation is a charitable affiliate of AARP. Learn more at

About First Nations Development Institute

For 34 years, using a three-pronged strategy of educating grassroots practitioners, advocating for systemic change, and capitalizing Indian communities, First Nations has been working to restore Native American control and culturally-compatible stewardship of the assets they own – be they land, human potential, cultural heritage, or natural resources – and to establish new assets for ensuring the long-term vitality of Native American communities. First Nations serves Native American communities throughout the United States. For more information about First Nations, visit


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