This February I attended the mid-year conference for U.N.I.T.Y. The conference is always held in Washington D.C. It is a time where the male and female representatives from all the native youth councils across the US come together to plan for the big summer conference. During our time in the Capitol we visited Capitol Hill, museums, monuments, and spent time planning.
Budder and I had the pleasure of visiting with Congressmen Boren and Cole. It was very interesting to be there in their offices during a voting period. We had the opportunity to talk with them and ask questions. Budder did most of the talking and did a fine job! One of the guys from the Cherokee Nation Washington Office arranged our schedule that day and was a big help, he was also a Claremore guy! We then had an intern take us on a Capitol tour. It was very intriguing to learn all the little ins and outs of the hill. While on our tour we even passed the majority leader being escorting by his secret service detail.
During our visit in the city we also visited the Holocaust Museum and the Air and Space Museum. On this day we did not have time to do either place justice but still wanted to at least see parts of them while we were there.
We did get to visit and spend a good deal of time in the Museum of the American Indian. Every part of the building was designed to resemble nature. There are prisms in one window that reflect a rainbow on the floor in the main room. During the winter and summer solstices the prisms line up across the floor of the room, I would love to see that. Our tour guide was also part Cherokee!
Of course while I was there I had to visit Hard Rock Cafe… It is kind of an addiction of mine. I bought two pins to put on my sash.
Riding the metro was very exciting and I actually enjoyed traveling that way while we stayed there. There was only one time during morning rush hour that it was uncomfortable and packed.
I couldn’t talk about the trip and not talk about Budders fall. He accidentally missed a “few” steps and ended up at the bottom of the staircase. He said he was ok and didn’t need to have it looked at. But after returning home and having it x-rayed he found out it was broken…
The UNITY group had many amazing speakers and we got a lot done. One day we broke into groups and chose projects. My group chose to do a PSA over substance abuse on the reservation. We place 2nd! We also talked about themes for the next year and my idea was chosen as one of the top three. It was “Standing through adversity, uniting our diversity, we stand as one”. (looking back I would tweak it to say “leading through adversity, uniting our diversity, we stand as one”)
I had never been to D.C. before this trip and it was amazing, however I do enjoying being back home with friends, family, and ample amounts of sleep. I couldn’t pick a few pictures I liked so I put together a little slide show of my trip using iMovie. I hope you enjoy the video I made. =)