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First Nations
Task Force

2023 was a big year for the First Nations Task Force as we completed the big task of creating our MCC Land Acknowledgment Statement which was an ongoing process for a few years. The statement will be engraved on a boulder in a yet to be determined area of the MCC grounds. 


The task force has been learning about the background of Ho Chunk and Wisconsin first peoples history and customs, discussing our responsibility for stewarding this land in ecological and inclusive ways. We learned of the history of land-taking from the original peoples through unjust means. The First Nations Cultural Landscape Tour led by Omar Poler on the UW Madison campus was a lesson in pre-settler indigenous life here in DeJope, the communities on these 4 lakes and how the state of WI and University land grants changed that. Today the UW is involved with efforts to increase learning for and about WI tribal issues, peoples, history and education.


The first part of our Task Force task has been learning background and history to create a statement to publish our acknowledgement of this history. Our ongoing efforts for now will be to discern ways to repair our relationship with First Nations and the earth and how we can move into the future with reciprocal relationship with the land and peoples.


To start this process we decided to combine efforts with the MCC land use group, gardens, and prairie and started a 3 Sisters indigenous gardening method this year.


To promote engagement of MCC members and the community beyond our land acknowledgement statement, the FN Task Force planted a Three Sisters Demonstration Garden in a fallow area of the east prairie. The site was laid out to conform with the slope in a north-south orientation following the Wampanoag method with inner hills of squash surrounded by outer hills of corn/beans, and sunflowers at the north end of the garden. The garden was roughly 42 ft. by 16 ft. in the shape of a bean. We purchased corn, bean, squash, and sunflower seeds from Seed Savers Exchange. We received a grant from the Advent Endowment Fund and supplies from the MCC Food Pantry Garden. Rebecca and Joanne learned and successfully processed the dry corn into hominy in the ages old traditional way and made and served corn soup and roasted squash at the MCC Halloween Harvest Fest October 28, 2023.

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