NLC 10th Annual Celebration: A Decade in the Making

2015

2015 started with the NLC redefines its focus area to support the primary objectives of NAHASDA, including: Supporting tribal affordable housing activities; Advancing self-sufficiency through financial wellness; Identifying grants and other funding opportunities; Improving access to private mortgage markets; Providing economic and community development resources; and Highlighting new and innovative planning for tribal infrastructure.

 

The NLC staff attended and technical information was disseminated at the NCAI Convention and Marketplace (October 27-31, 2014 in Atlanta, Georgia) and the HUD ONAP Asset Building Summit: A Pathway to Economic Self-Determination (November 18-19, 2014 in St. Paul, Minnesota); the Native IDA Convening and Training Session on in Denver, Colorado, Boots to Business: Veteran’s Small Business Session (March 10-11, 2015 in Miami, FL); Native American Housing: Obstacles and Opportunities Panel Webinar featuring Rodger Boyd (March 24, 2015); the OMB’s New Uniform Guidance Training (March 25-26, 2015 in Albuquerque, NM); the OWEESTA: Building Native Communities Financial Skills for Families – Certified Instruction Training (May 4-6, 2015 in Tulsa, OK); HUD’s Promise Zone Webinars (June 16, 2015 and July 14, 2015); and the SBA Office of Native American Affairs 8(a) Workshop for Tribes and Native Americans (July 23, 2015). The NLC staff attended and facilitated a training session on Financial Literacy at the Youth Camp (January 28, February 25, March 23, April 29, July 27 and August 3, 2015)

In addition, NLC staff attended and technical information was disseminated at the Gathering of Nations (April 23-25, 2015 in Albuquerque, NM); the AMERIND Risk/NAIHC Convention and Tradeshow (May 12-14, 2015 in Scottsdale, AZ); the United Southern and Eastern Tribes (USET) Semi-Annual Meeting (May 18-20, 2015 in Mashantucket, CT); the Southern Plains Indian Housing Associations (SPINA) Spring Meeting (May 19-22, 2015 in Catoosa, OK); and the Florida Indian Youth Conference (July 10-17, 2015). The NLC furthermore facilitated the Tribal Housing Training Series and at tribal colleges, including Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute (SIPI) (July 7-9, 2015) and Leech Lake Tribal College (August 11-13, 2015) with supplementary Training for Tribal Asset Building: Leveraging Resources (September 9-11, 2015 in Flagstaff, AZ)

 

The NLC conducted over 100 webinars in fiscal year 2015 included the following sessions: Creating Tribal Member Owned Businesses, Grant Writing 101 – 103, Low Income Housing Tax Credit Program Compliance, Self-Monitoring: IHP/APR, Team Building for Housing Departments and Time Management. The NLC’s top nationwide community outreached activities included California, Oklahoma with over 3,500 sessions in fiscal year 2015. In the digital and online realm, the NLC has increased the sessions and vistors to the website by at least 20% to the top three pages: the Home Page, Trainings and Events page and the About the NLC – Staff, Focus Areas page. The topic traffic sources for the NLC website came from Organic Rating (Google, Bing, Yahoo), Referral Links (HUD Portal and Kerretv Online) and Direct Links. The NLC website had a growth of new users increased by 11.13%.

 

By using IHBG Funds the NLC was able to perform the training / technical assistance activities including Apache Housing Authority (February 18-19, March 31 – April 2 and May 1, 2015); Bridgeport Colony Development Corporation (April 6-9, 2015); Delaware Nation of Oklahoma (April 28-30, 2015); Leech Lake Housing Authority (May 5-7, 2015); On-site Financial Literacy training (July 13-17, July 28, and August 3, 2015); On-site Home Buyer Education and Financial Wellness training (August 18-19, 2015); Taos Pueblo Housing Authority (August 19-20, 2015); and Comanche Nation Housing Authority (September 22-24, 2015).

 

To learn more about the Native Learning Center, please visit our website atwww.nativelearningcenter.com.

2014

In fiscal year 2014, the Native Learning Center continued on with their success with the attendance and dissemination technical information at the American Indian Veterans Memorial Initiative (AIVMI) at the Alaska Federation of Natives (AFN) Annual Convention ( October 24-26, 2013);  the United South and Eastern Tribes (USET) Annual Meeting and Expo (October 28-31, 2013); the National Indian Education Association (NIEA) Annual Convention and Tradeshow (October 29-November 3, 2013); and the North American Indigenous Games Council Meeting (November 15-17, 2013). Members of NLC staff attended HUD’s Construction Administration Training (November 4-7, 2013); the First Nations Oweesta Corporation’s Building Native Communities: Financial Skills for Families, Certified Instructor Training (January 28-30, 2014); and the Native Women and Men’s Wellness Conference (March 16-19, 2014).

 

NLC staff members also attended and technical information was disseminated at the National American Indian Conference on Child Abuse and Neglect Conference (April 13-16, 2014 in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida); NICWA Tradeshow (April 13-16); Gathering of Nations (April 24-26, 2014 in Albuquerque, New Mexico); AMERIND (September 15-17, 2014 in Portland, Oregon); and NAIHC Leadership Institute – Pathways Home (September 23-25, 20-14 in Tampa, Florida).  The NLC hosted Training for Building Sustainable Communities in Indian Country as its Spring Conference (April 1-3, 2014 in Green Bay, Wisconsin) with 3-day training event that had 10 vendors and 140 people from 13 tribes attended. Nearly 30 topics were covered for this event which included Revitalizing Work and Tribal Culture through Team Awareness, Negotiating Federal Community Facilities Funding for $0.00 Down, Cultural Revitalization: Keeping Our Culture Alive for Generations, Learning from our Elders and more.

 

7th Generation Project was held at the Seminole Tribe of Florida’s Hollywood Tribal Headquarters Auditorium, Big Cypress and Brighton, Florida. The interactive presentation discussed the importance of native sovereignty, development of youth, language and cultural preservation. The NLC’s 6th Annual Summer Conference ( June 3-5, 2014) at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Hollywood, Florida with the theme Promoting Strong and Safe Tribal Communities with topics including Self-Determination through Training and Technical Assistance, Strategies for Addressing the Impact of Sequestration in Indian Housing and Morals and Values of Cultural Importance. The NLC’s 2nd Annual Indian Housing Training Conference ( August 19-21, 2014) at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino Tulsa in Catoosa, Oklahoma covering such topics as The History of Indian Housing: Taking a Look Back for a Better Perspective on the Present, Tribal Governments and Housing Authorities Should Be Friends and Accounting and Budgeting Principles for Tribal Programs.

 

In addition, The NLC conducted over 45 webinars in the 2014 fiscal year including Learning to Conduct Conflict Resolution, IHP/APR and Self-Monitoring, Identifying Resources: HUD, BIA, HIS & ANA, Tribal Government 101 and Financial Audit Preparation. Many of the NLC’s Nationwide Community Outreach Activities included weekly E-blasts emails sends out to over 3,000+ people about webinar training sessions, conferences, workshops, and technical training opportunities; Web and print outreach through Indian Country Today, Native American Times, Lakota Times, and the Native Sun Times. Visitors to the NLC website spent roughly 2:41 viewing a page / pages in 2014 with the regions for the most sessions visits being Florida ( 3,570), Oklahoma (1,594) and California (1,291).

 

Lastly, using IHBG Funds here are some of the Training/Technical Assistance Activities the NLC performed: Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe –  Provided technical assistance in the form of on-site training to the members and staff of the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe in Akwesasne, New York (November 13-14, 2013); Navajo Nation  –  Provided technical assistance in the form of on-site training on Developing Funding Opportunities at the Governance and Mall Business Conference in Flagstaff, Arizona (November 14, 2013 and June 19, 2014 ); MACT Health Board, Inc. – Provided technical assistance in the form of on-site training as Board of Director Orientation in Angels Camp, California (February 13-14, 2014); Northern Ponca Housing Authority – Provided technical assistance in the form of on-site training for the Board of Directors in La Vista (Omaha), Nebraska (April 5, 2014 );  and Oneida Tribe of Indians of Wisconsin – Provided on-site technical assistance on Revitalizing Work through Team Resilience in Green Bay, Wisconsin (August 11-13, 2014)

 

To learn more about the Native Learning Center, please visit our website at www.nativelearningcenter.com.

2013

In fiscal year 2013, the NLC kept expanding their influence by hosting Grant Researching and Proposal Writing in Indian Country Workshop (December 3-5, 2012), Indianpreneurship (March 5-6, 2013), Tribal Healthy Home Training (May 21-23 2013), NAHASDA Internal Control Standards for Tribal Organizations (June 20-21, 2013) and Strengthening Tribal Communities into the Future, the NLC’s 5th Annual Summer Conference (June 4-6, 2013).

 

For the first time in its history, the NLC hosted a training conference outside of Florida, as the Indian Housing Training Conference ( September 10-13, 2013 at the Double Tree by Hilton Tulsa Downtown, Tulsa, Oklahoma). Being more centrally located to the tribes within the Southern Plains of ONAP, this event provided a greatly enhanced opportunity for attendance throughout Indian Country with 139 attendees from 82 tribes, 19 topics with 36 sessions, 29 instructors, and 12 vendors. This event cover such topics including NAHASDA Essentials, History of Indian Housing, Low Income Housing Tax Credit Compliance, Cultivating Community Preparedness with Your Tribal Housing Participants, Creating Home Ownership and Affordable Housing Through CFDIs and several others.

 

The NLC conducted over 30 webinars including Cultural Preservation, Writing Persuasively for Grants, Entering into Contracts Using NAHASDA Guide, Introduction to NAHASDA Self-Monitoring and NAHASDA Grant Writing Essentials. The NLC staff attended and disseminated technical information to nearly 2,000 people from  nearly 70 tribes at the National Indian Education Association (NIEA) Convention (October 16-21, 2012); nearly 120 people from 15 tribes the AMERIND Conference and Trade Fair (October 29-November 1, 2012); Over 625 people from nearly 20 tribes at the Reservation Economic Summit (RES) & American Indian Business Trade Fair (March 11, 2013); Estimated 1,000 people from over a dozen tribes at the Gathering of Nations Pow Wow (April 26-27, 2013) An estimated 230 people from 13 tribes; and estimated 230 people from 13 tribes at the National American Indian Housing Council (NAIHC) Convention (May 21-23, 2013) and AMERIND Conference (September 24-26, 2013). In addition, NLC staff presented a session on Grants Education at the National American Indian Housing Council (NAIHC) Legal Symposium (December 12, 2012), and again at the NAIHC Convention (May 22, 2013).  NLC staff also attended the Native Americans in Philanthropy Conference (April 2-4, 2013).

 

The NLC continued with their nationwide community outreach activities with weekly emails to a database of over 3,000 people about webinar training sessions, conferences, workshops, and technical training opportunities; Web and print outreach through Indian Country Today, Native American Times, Indianz.com, Cherokee Phoenix, Navajo Times, First Nations, The Circle, and the Native Sun Times; Web and print Outreach through Indian Country Today, Native American Times, Indianz.com, Cherokee Phoenix, Navajo Times, First Nations, The Circle, and the Native Sun Times and many more. By expanding the integrated Google Analytics on the NLC website there was an effort to more accurately track what our website visitors were viewing.  In fiscal year 2013, the average amount of time visitors spent viewing a specific page or set of pages was 3.14 minutes. The NLC also expanded our social media reach with 644 Facebook connections, 393 LinkedIn connections, and 21 Twitter connections.

 

To learn more about the Native Learning Center, please visit our website at www.nativelearningcenter.com.

2012

The NLC continued it streak of successes and hosted a Grant Researching and Proposal Writing Review and Certification Workshop on October 27, 2011 with 43 attendees, the Housing Preventive Maintenance and Safety Workshop on December 3-7, 2011 with 13 attendees, the Winter Symposium on January 24-26, 2012 with 68 attendees, and a 4th Annual Summer Conference on June 5-7, 2012 with 118 attendees.  The NLC was invited and participated in HUD’s Sustainable Construction in Indian Country Collaboration Meeting on June 28-29, 2012 and the White House Forum on Tribal Housing on July 25-26, 2012 in Washington, DC.  NLC staff also attended and technical information was disseminated to an estimated 200 people from 16 tribes during the Reservation Economic Summit (RES) and American Indian Business Trade Fair on February 27-March 1, 2012 in Las Vegas, NV and the National Indian Gaming Association (NIGA) Conference on September 18-19, 2012 in Hollywood, FL.

 

In February 2012 Georgette Palmer Smith, a member of the Kiowa Tribe of Oklahoma, became the Executive Director of the Seminole Tribe of Florida Native Learning Center. She previously served as Director of Administrative Services for the NLC for two years.

 

In response to Kevin Fitzgibbons, Administrator for the Eastern Woodlands Office of Native American Programs, the NLC provided on-site technical assistance to address the issue of relocating Hoh Tribe housing units that are in a flood zone to land that was recently put into trust status and the Leach Lake Recovery Act Housing Project which was $350,000 over budget, and only 10 of the 15 units had been constructed. The NLC was asked to provide a Subject Matter Expert who would perform a financial analysis and inspect the 10 built units to ensure completion of the project.

 

As well as on- and off-site events, the NLC continued to offer over 25 interactive webinars in the fiscal year 2012, including Financial Wellness, Effective Supervisory Skills, Motivation and Team Building and Starting a Nonprofit Organization. Most importantly, in July 2012 the NLC launched Kerretv Online, which allows for the delivery of interactive course curriculum to individuals within a much-improved virtual learning environment with tracked attendance.

 

To learn more about the Native Learning Center, please visit our website at www.nativelearningcenter.com.

2011

With the success in 2010, the NLC expanded the educational offering to include the November 2010 Winter Symposium with 57 attendees from 21 tribes; the March 2011 Spring Symposium with 55 attendees from 12 tribes; the June 2011 3rd Annual Summer Conference with 41 attendees from 14 tribes; the August 2011 Grant Researching and Proposal Writing Workshop with 33 attendees from 18 tribes; the September 2011 Procurement Training with 19 attendees from 3 tribes; and the September 2011 Fall Symposium with 26 attendees.

 

Also the NLC implemented online interactive webinar training opportunities via web-based courses. Learners had access to distance learning anywhere they had an Internet connection. The 10 webinar trainings for 2011 included such as A to Z of Grant Writing, Basics of Grant Reporting, Fundamentals of Financial Wellness, Grant Reporting and Grant Management, Starting a Tribal Nonprofit and many more. The NLC staff also attended the Greener Homes National Summit on September 2011 and disseminated technical information. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development recognized the Native Learning Center during its Greener Homes National Summit for outstanding contributions in sustainability.

 

To learn more about the Native Learning Center, please visit our website at www.nativelearningcenter.com.

2010

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development recognized the Native Learning Center during its Greener Homes National Summit for outstanding contributions in sustainability. The NLC hosted its 2nd Annual Summer Conference in June in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. The NLC in August started its Lunch and Learn Series that featured the Get Grants!, Common Errors in English Usage and LEED Projects in Native America webinars. In addition, the NLC staff presented a session on Grants Education and disseminated technical information at the National American Indian Housing Council (NAIHC) Conference in Minneapolis, MN on May 25-26, 2010. The NLC staff attended and technical information was disseminated at the National Indian Gaming Association (NIGA) Conference on June 8-10, 2010, as well as the National Indian Education Association (NIEA) Convention on October 6-9, 2010, Greener Homes National Summit in Reno, NV on September 7-10, 2010, and the United South & Eastern Tribes (USET) Conference on September 11-14, 2010.

To learn more about the Native Learning Center, please visit our website at www.nativelearningcenter.com.

2009

The Native Learning Center (NLC) worked primarily in the year 2009 on the renovation and design of its facility located at 6363 Taft Street in Hollywood, Florida. This location would house several classrooms and an administrative office.  The NLC conducted its 1st Annual Summer Conference in June with courses focused on Sustainable Design, Financial Wellness, and Grants Education.  These courses were developed and designed to address the issues received through feedback of needs assessment surveys sent out to Native communities.

To learn more about the Native Learning Center, please visit our website at www.nativelearningcenter.com.

2008

The Native Learning Center (NLC) was established in January of 2008, as a program of the Seminole Tribe of Florida Housing Department, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Eastern Woodlands Office of Native American Programs (EWONAP), and various Native American trainers throughout Indian Country. As a Model Activities [The Native American Housing Assistance and Self Determination Act of 1996 (NAHASDA) – 202(6)] Program the Native Learning Center developed areas of concentration to complement current national Indian organizations that support EWONAP’s mission of promoting the development of Indian Housing and housing related activities. 

The NLC primed the field by conducting initial needs assessment surveys throughout Native communities, and invited Tribes and Tribal Designated Housing Entities (TDHE) to convey needs that they faced in their homes.