MMIW & The Buffalo Project

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Hey everyone, my name is Corinne Oestreich. Some of you may know me from the powwow circle because I also write for powwows.com! I’m excited to join the NTVS team as their writer, because we have some super important things to talk about. NTVS is teaming up with a very important organization in the coming weeks, and we want to be sure you know all about who they are, and the cause they are fighting for.

For those who are unaware, Indian Country faces an epidemic of Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women. Native women are 3.5 times more likely to be killed than White Women, 2/3 of us will experience violence in our lifetime, and 1/3 will be sexually assaulted. The current estimated number of missing indigenous women is in the 5,000 range, though there are no exact figures. On average, 300 indigenous women go missing from First Nations Canada alone each year.

In 2018 I was awarded a fellowship with the Changemaker Initiative, in partnership with Ashoka to develop a fix to social justice issues in our communities. I wanted to make a program that would attack Human Trafficking from the demand side to it’s business. I wanted to eliminate the consumers of these women..and if so, what could that look like? For me, it was a community of emotionally healthy men, who had the proper tools to work through their emotions and relationships with each other, so that they were never even drawn to trafficked women, or to committing violence against them. The idea was to empower these men and remind them that they too are sacred, and tasked as protectors, not predators.

Buffalo Project hosts 3 day workshops using indigenous values in our curriculum designed to tap into and restore imbalances in men. Our instructors are all men, and create safe spaces to work through tough emotions with the permission to begin their journey of growth.

Thank you to NTVS Clothing for their MMIW shirt and the proceeds that will go towards getting the word out about our organization.

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