He and tribal leader Arnold ultimately got the U.S. Department of Defense and other agencies to allow re-vegetation projects, ceremonial harvests and other gatherings on federal lands AND convinced 16 tribes to work together with the very government with which they shared a traumatic history. Now there is way more to the whole process than that one sentence (including a decade of patience, red tape, deep listening and negotiations). But the gist of it is just that - an unlikely collaboration amongst people on opposite sides of fences and of history. You can read more about some of their projects here.
One of their projects which delights me is the revegetation of 92 acres of land over low level radioactive waste buried underground. During the ceremony, Arnold said: "If the land is sick and out of balance, so are we." And so the tribes and the U.S. Forest Service and other agencies came together to plant and heal the land. Using a mix of native and scientific methods, seeds and plants were place in the ground and the healing began. And much to the surprise of the U.S. Forest Service, the native methods of planting (in the spring) were more successful than the scientific method (plant in fall and winter). The insects have returned to where once nothing lived. The land and the people have begun to heal. Hope for the planet and hope for the people - a good news story during angsty times!
Jen Walls and her imaJENation