iCare About

Navajoland

Most of us are unaware that there is a place in the USA—a place nearly the size of West Virginia—where most people live below the poverty line. These people did not choose to live in this place. They were forced to this place.

Navajos are proud people by nature. They are proud of their warrior heritage. Today, many are living lives of quiet desperation.

We aim to help the Navajo people in three ways. First, by direct aid, such as helping a poor mom buy school supplies for her kids.

Second, by indirect ways, such as helping groups on the Navajo Reservation help others who are in desperate or crisis situations. Lastly, we want to provide role models for Navajos—solid examples of “outsiders” helping and caring for them in selfless ways. We hope to stop the cycle of deep distrust, estrangement, and poor cooperation that characterizes the dealings of Navajos with outsiders—generation after generation—that has contributed to their widespread poverty.

We hope that one or more of the Wish List items below will interest you. If you have another idea of a way to help, please let us know.

Great Items to Bring
  • Gardening Tools and Gloves
  • Office Supplies (paper, memory sticks, CDs)
  • Mac Laptop or Desktop-new or used
  • Phone Cards
  • Power Tools

“Do Good While Getting Away.”

Choose to be a travel philanthropist as you enjoy Private Custom travel or a Group Departure with iCare Travel.

Wish List Items

Click on the Image to Learn More About the Wish List Item:

$55 Solar-powered Light for Studying

$55 Solar-powered Light for Studying

Of all people living in the US without electricity, 75% of them are Navajos. Many Navajo children read by the light of kerosene lanterns after the sun does down. This is not a healthy practice.

Consider buying a small solar light and panel for a Navajo child living without electricity. These mini-systems are robust, waterproof, and designed to withstand multiple falls.

When you visit, see how the nifty solar lighting system you bought works, and if possible, meet the child.

$75 Provide Diapers and Baby Formula

$75 Diapers and Baby Formula

A majority of Navajos live below the poverty line. Consider buying a $75 gift card for diapers and baby formula for a single mom. It would be a way to show that biliganas (white people) do care about them, and wish them well.

$80 School Supplies Fall Off the Radar

$80 School Supplies Fall Off the Radar

Domestic violence is rampant on the Reservation. Often the biggest worry for a victim of domestic violence who is leaving her home is how to pay for rent. Less critical needs, such as school supplies for her kids, are not met.

Your gift will ensure that the kids of a domestic violence victim have school supplies for one year. On your visit, we can visit with the warm-hearted people who are helping the mom to cope and re-build her life, if you wish.

$100 At-risk Girls Grow Corn

$100 At-risk Girls Grow Corn

Several years back, a group of at-risk girls began growing corn on a piece of land given to them for that purpose. Over time, they began planting squash, and they figured out ways to cross-pollinate crops. They began fertilizing their plants with ash from the sweat lodge, and found ways to get water to the crops when it was most needed.

Consider helping these girls move their efforts forward. The girls would like to expand their planting field next summer. They would appreciate help with buying fence posts, wire, and other supplies.

On your visit, we will meet some of the girls and see their field. We will visit a while and hear their farming stories over beverages and snacks.

$100 Smiles at Christmas

$100 Smiles at Christmas

Here is another gift item that will go a long way in sending the message that biliganas (white people) can be good-hearted people.

Consider buying christmas presents for kids enduring difficult times. When you come, we will deliver the presents to the organization that helps these unfortunate families. This organization knows where the families are, and they will be happy to deliver the presents. We will spend some time learning about life on the “Res”—both the good and the bad—over a traditional meal, if you wish.

Your gifts will put smiles on many children’s faces!

$200 Help Make a Sweat Lodge for Healing

$200 Help Make a Sweat Lodge for Healing

Sweat lodge ceremonies are used for sacred matters, social events, and for healing. The sweat lodge you would be helping to create is for the healing and purifying of domestic violence victims.

Mostly they are women, although elders and children are also sometimes victims.

When you come, we will see the sweat lodge, have a meal with local nonprofit staff, learn about Navajo tradition as well as learn about the ups and downs of daily life on the “Res.”

$200 Please Share your Business Experience

$200 Please Share your Business Experience

Do you have business experience that could help a rural Navajo nonprofit organization realize its goals? Marketing, sales, business organization and development, expertise in advertising, etc.—if you shared your knowledge in these areas it would be greatly appreciated.

The mission of the nonprofit Sacred Mountains Foundation is to assist Navajos who live with complacency and despair to find a workable balance between traditional ways and the modern world.

Your donation will be used to buy materials or services that you and the nonprofit director decide upon. We will enjoy snacks and a home-cooked meal during your visit.

$200 Feed the Sun Dancers

$200 Feed the Sun Dancers

From the late 1700s to the mid 1800s, the Sun Dance was the most widely spread of all Plains Indian tribal religions. It is a rite of renewal–a spiritual rebirth for the participants, and a regeneration ceremony of the living earth.

Every year in July, hundreds of Natives and non-Natives from around the world come to the Sun Dance sacred grounds for four days of drumming, singing, dancing from sunrise to sunset, eating, and praying for global unity and peace.

Would you like to experience the Sun Dance and be an honored guest? We will spend some talking with the Diné’ Sun Dance leader and elder, and we will learn about the sacred ceremony. Your generous gift of helping to feed the Sun Dance participants and guests will be warmly appreciated.

$250 Help Troubled Navajo Youth

$250 Help Troubled Navajo Youth

The Navajo Reservation has no shortage of young people with significant personal and social problems. Our friends at the Sacred Mountains Foundation have a program to help troubled youth through Navajo horse culture and corn growing.

A first step is to hire infrastructure experts who will a) design a sanitation system for the ancestral lands where the programs will be held, and 2) assess the water well. Your donation will be used for these purposes.

When you come, we will go to the ancestral lands and visit with the programs director and local Navajo youths. We will learn about life on the “Res” from the point of view of the young people, while enjoying a home-cooked meal.

$350 Help Single Moms Weave out of Poverty

$350 Help Single Moms Weave out of Poverty

Rug weaving is a traditional way to make a living. Many Navajo women wish they knew how.

Consider donating the cost of a weaving instructor and a workshop on Navajo weaving techniques to help mothers learn a valuable skill. On your trip, we will meet the weaving instructor, meet a weaver, and learn about Navajo rugs and the weaving tradition over coffee or tea and a meal.

$400 Train a Navajo to Speak out Against Violence

$400 Train a Navajo to Speak out Against Violence

Consider helping to train an individual to speak out and educate Navajos about domestic violence.

In the past year, the crisis center in Chinle has lost half of its staff due to a funding crisis. Only the core staff are left, and they have way too many cases handle. By providing training for an individual to go out to the rural community halls and educate the locals on domestic violence, some of the violence may be averted before it begins. This is a powerful and compassionate gift.

When you visit Canyon de Chelly, we will meet the people who are doing this work. We will also learn about life on the “Res”—both the good and the bad—while enjoying a traditional meal.

$7,500 Quonset Hut for Better Lives

$7,500 Quonset Hut for Better Lives

A nonprofit in the rural community of Pinon needs a building to hold workshops and house volunteers. A main goal of their activities is to help the very traditional Diné people learn and accept the positive influences of the outside world while retaining their ancient traditions.

A Quonset hut is a sturdy structure that will withstand the strong winds. Volunteers will insulate the 30’x20′ structure with fibrous adobe (a paper, clay and cement mixture), and will make the hut visually pleasing.

When you come, your Quonset hut donation either will be complete or under construction. Your gift will be warmly appreciated by the Navajo community. A celebration with delicious traditional food, libations and ‘singing’ will be held in your honor to express their gratitude!

$8,500 Help Comes in a Single-wide Trailer

$8,500 Help Comes in a Single-wide Trailer

This may not be the sexiest of gifts (!) but it may perhaps be the most compassionate.

The ADABI Crisis Center in Chinle is at risk of losing its office in the single-wide trailer they rent because of a severe budget crisis. This is the only family crisis center in a 70 mile radius. It would be a truly wonderful gift to buy the trailer for them, so they do not have to worry about eviction.

Making this donation would send a huge the message to the Navajo community that people from the outside world do care about Navajos and their well-being. A celebration will be held in your honor with food, libations, and ‘singing,’ where the locals will express their gratitude.

$10,000 Help Restore the Land

$10,000 Help Restore the Land

The Sacred Mountains Foundation needs a tractor for land restoration and erosion control. Much of the land is heavy red clay, and the water runs right off the top of it. Ten thousand dollars will enable SMF to buy a used John Deere tractor in Gallup.

When you come, see your tractor donation at work, and enjoy a celebration given in your honor with traditional foods, libations and ‘singing!’