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Press conference explores solutions to pressing problems of American Indians, indigenous people throughout the world
by Global Good News staff writer
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3 October 2009
A press conference on building healthy, sustainable American Indian communities—which preceded a three-day international symposium with the same theme—was held last weekend at Maharishi University of Management in Fairfield, Iowa, USA.
The press conference* explored 'in brief a proven five-point plan to dramatically reduce, and even eradicate, some of the most pressing problems confronting American Indians and all indigenous people throughout the world', said Dr Robert Roth, US National Director of Expansion for the Global Country of World Peace, who gave the opening remarks at the press conference.
This plan of the Ho-Chunk elders is not a plan in theory only, Dr Roth continued. It is a plan with a proven track record of success in the Winnebago tribe in Nebraska, as well as a growing number of tribes in Indian Country and throughout the world.
'It is a plan that is so bold and so promising that it has garnered the interest, support, and now with this conference, the participation of top leaders of the National Congress of American Indians (NCAI), the National Indian Education Association (NIEA), the Bureau of Indian Education (BIE), the Indian Health Services (IHS) and a number of foundations, as well as the faculty here at Maharishi University of Management.'
The initiative also has the support of former US President Bill Clinton, whose William J. Clinton Foundation is transforming the quality of life in many of the same areas that are crucial to the the Ho-Chunk elders' plan. Mr Clinton 'has prepared an opening address via video to the conference,' Dr Roth said.
Dr Roth introduced members on the panel, including Chris Peters, President of the Seventh Generation Foundation; Robert Cook, President of the National Indian Education Association; Lucille Echohawk, strategic advisor for the Casey Family Programs in Kansas City; and Tim Paul, Executive Director of the Maliseet Nation Conservation Council of New Brunswick. He also introduced several leaders of the Hocak Elders Council, Inc—who have been a driving force behind this plan—and conference moderator Prosper Waukon**, hereditary leader of the Winnebago tribe of Nebraska.
'[Also] connecting to this news conference are the leaders of First Nations from 35 countries,' Dr Roth said.
*A replay of the press conference was featured on the 1 October 2009 Maharishi Global Family Chat, broadcast daily via Internet webcast on the Maharishi Channel, Channel 3. Podcasts of the daily Global Family Chat (audio track) are also available for automatic download, via an RSS feed.
**Prosper Waukon is also an accomplished businessman, youth development specialist, and organizational strategist. Mr Waukon shares with the Hocak Elders Council, a tireless advocacy for the education, health, food, and preservation and restoration of culture for his tribe and the whole of Indian Country.
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