Gila River Indian Community rejects states’ plan for Colorado, works with feds

The Gila River Indian Community said it does not support a plan backed by three states for managing the Colorado River’s shrinking water supply, and is instead working instead with federal officials to develop its own proposal for water sharing.

Federal regulators deny permits for hydropower projects on Navajo Nation

Federal energy officials took the unusual step of denying permits Thursday to several pumped hydropower projects proposed on the Navajo Nation, citing a new policy that gives tribes a greater voice in projects on their lands - a move welcomed by advocates.

State of Indian Nations is good, but could be better, speakers say

WASHINGTON - Tribal nations are seeing themselves represented more than ever before in the government, but they still need to make their voices heard more loudly at the ballot box, the president of the National Congress of American Indians said Monday.

Ajo Center for Sustainable Agriculture teaches next generation farmers sustainable practices

AJO – Sterling Johnson from the Ajo Center for Sustainable Agriculture is teaching the next generation of Indigenous farmers how to connect with the land and the culture through sustainable growing techniques.

Arizona Indian Festival showcases authentic Indigenous art

SCOTTSDALE – The Arizona Indian Festival in Scottsdale showcases authentic Indigenous art. Artists say knockoffs from overseas undermine their authentic work, which represents their culture.

Sonja Morgan from the Navajo Nation showcases her rug-weaving process at the Arizona Indian Festival in Scottsdale on Feb. 3, 2024. (Photo by Marnie Jordan/Cronkite News)

Native nations with scarce internet are building their own broadband networks

Native nations have historically lagged in high-speed internet access, which became even more apparent in the COVID-19 pandemic. So some tribes, such as the Hopi, have taken the matter into their own hands by building their own high-speed networks.

Navajo president calls for new VA medical, benefits centers at House hearing

WASHINGTON - Navajo Nation President Buu Nygren called on lawmakers Thursday to put Veterans Affairs medical and benefits centers on the reservation to help deliver services that he said Indigenous veterans have earned but often cannot access.

‘We are survivors:’ National, Arizona projects aim to uncover, preserve histories of Native American boarding schools

PHOENIX – The Federal Indian Boarding School Initiative launched an oral history project documenting the traumatic experiences of Indigenous children in the federal boarding school system. Local preservation efforts have already delved into Arizona’s history of boarding schools and resulting generational trauma.

Trophies, a letterman jacket and images of early Native American history in the visitor center of Phoenix Indian School at what is now Steele Indian School Park. (Photo by Ellie Willard/Cronkite News)

New and upgraded health care facilities for Native Americans open in Arizona

PHOENIX – Several new and upgraded health facilities for Native Americans opened in Arizona this year and the Navajo Nation is working to improve the nursing shortage in rural communities.

‘Pumped’ hydropower plans proliferate; one in particular stirs opposition

WASHNGTON - Plans for pumped storage hydropower projects - which recirculate water on a loop to generate power - are proliferating in Arizona, but one in particular, at Black Mesa on the Navajo Nation, has drawn opposition from local groups.

A Flagstaff nonprofit helps its Indigenous community combat high rates of diabetes using holistic approaches

FLAGSTAFF – Native Americans for Community Action (NACA) combats diabetes within Flagstaff's Indigenous community using a holistic approach. It focuses on reconnecting with traditional cultural practices to manage and prevent diabetes.

Morgan Farley, a Navajo diabetes health coach at NACA, outside NACA’s wellness center, where community members get diabetes management and prevention services. Many studies show that obesity puts people at a higher risk for having diabetes. The NACA program focuses on increasing patients’ physical activity and encouraging healthy eating habits, while also emphasizing the importance of traditional and cultural wellness practices. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 89.8% of adults aged 18 and older diagnosed with diabetes between 2017 and 2020 were classified as overweight or obese. (Photo by Oakley Seiter/Cronkite News)

Biden kicks off Tribal Nations Summit with order streamlining funding access

WASHINGTON - More than 100 Indigenous leaders gathered this week for the Biden administration's third Tribal Nations Summit, where President Joe Biden vowed to strengthen relationships with tribes and signed an executive order to improve their access to capital.