Village Voice: Designing Our Future Together


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Village Voice is a community-driven initative created by the North Slope villages of Alaska to build capacity to design their own future.

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Village Voice: Designing Our Future Together

  1. 1. Village Voice: Designing our Future Together
  2. 3. Purpose & Principles of Village Voice <ul><li>Purpose </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Building capacity and effective voice to communicate with industry and co-create opportunities and solutions together. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Principles/Values </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sensitive to village concerns </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Trust </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Communication, free and open </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Local/village-control of initiatives </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Based on values of region/people </li></ul></ul>
  3. 4. Inupiat Values <ul><li>-Knowledge of Language </li></ul><ul><li>-Knowledge of Family Tree -Sharing -Humility -Respect for Others -Love for Children -Cooperation -Hard Work </li></ul><ul><li>-Respect for Elders -Respect for Nature -Avoid Conflict -Family Roles -Humor -Spirituality -Domestic Skills -Hunter Success -Responsibility to Tribe </li></ul>
  4. 5. Purpose <ul><li>Address the need to develop an effective voice for village residents on potential impact of development on villages </li></ul><ul><li>Form regional board to access and distribute funds to assist communities to address such impacts </li></ul><ul><li>To empower communities to solve their own issues and design their own solutions. </li></ul>
  5. 6. Process <ul><li>What was discussed </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Village representatives spoke; industry listened </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Emphasis on regions--existing models and initatives—e.g. healthy communities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ground rules developed by community representatives </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Focused to help villages discuss impact of resource development proposals </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Solutions for better discussions/negotiations </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>New ways to cooperate </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Build on strengths of region </li></ul></ul></ul>
  6. 7. Proposed Structure <ul><li>Proposed Participants </li></ul><ul><ul><li>All North Slope Villages (that wish to participate) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Proposed Structure </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Board, (2 individuals, one alternate, per village) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Suggested one youth, under 30 </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Selected by 3 entities (municipal, tribal and village) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Minimum two meetings each year </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary/Treasurer </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Operating Rules </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Policies </li></ul></ul></ul>
  7. 8. Structure for Funding Determined by Village Voice Representatives <ul><li>Funding divided equally to villages as decided by the community representatives. </li></ul><ul><li>Proposals developed by villages and then reports accomplishments and outcomes for Village Voice Board to review </li></ul><ul><li>Village Voice board approves proposals, secures funding </li></ul>
  8. 9. Community Proposed Initiatives: Examples <ul><li>Training for villages to understand industry proposals and participate in the design of the proposed project </li></ul><ul><li>Community liaison hired to work with industry </li></ul><ul><li>Cultural exchanges--industry to village--village to industry </li></ul><ul><li>Purchase equipment/technology </li></ul>
  9. 10. Outcomes To-Date <ul><li>As a result of three and half years work with communities and hundreds of informal and formal (meetings) engagements with the residents of Alaska’s Arctic to form “Village Voice” much has been learned and trust has been built. </li></ul><ul><li>But it is a relationship-building initiative that cannot succeed without the investment of all parties at the table taking the time or being accountable. </li></ul>
  10. 11. The Impact <ul><ul><li>-- Representatives invited from municipal, tribal governments and village corporations all have a voice through the community representatives. Every village has attended and participated </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Village Voice asked North Slope Borough and Shell Alaska to visit each community and speak to their leaders </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Recognition at the Alaska Federation of Natives annual meetings of the Village Voice initiative </li></ul></ul>
  11. 12. From the Communities <ul><li>Impact </li></ul><ul><li>The tribal, city and village corporation worked together to identify the most critical needs of the organizations and the community. Then, without support from the borough or ASRC, they addressed those needs. The community leaders felt empowered and their cooperation with each other improved the lives of their citizens. </li></ul><ul><li>“ The Village Voice funds provided to the City of Kaktovik have positively impacted our community by assisting the City with maintenance costs, building upgrades and repairs and community programs.”- Anne Tikluk, Mayor of Kaktovik </li></ul><ul><li>“ This will help keep us going. Our people will be very pleased that their tribe and Village Voice could do something to help. The funds used under this grant had a huge positive impact on the community”- Anaktuvuk Pass </li></ul><ul><li>“ The Native Village for the first time has an office that we can feel proud of. We have a table for our Council to meet at. We have new chairs. We are more confident now that we have these things. I am very grateful about the Village Voice funds. They help out on our office supplies for the Native Village of Barrow.” - Tommy Olemaun, President, Native Village of Barrow </li></ul>
  12. 13. <ul><li>. </li></ul>“ Working together and speaking with one voice to ensure responsible development is important for a healthy community. I hope you will join me in making sure this effort succeeds in all of our villages.” –The Honorable Edward Itta, Mayor of the North Slope Borough