Happy Indigenous People's Day!
On Behalf of the whole crew of the Akuy Eenda Maawehlaang: The Place Where People Gather film, I have some VERY EXCITING NEWS to share with you.
We have succeeded in our goal, of raising $30,000 to create our film! I am feeling truly overwhelmed by both the breadth and depth of support we've received, and also the rate at which it is has poured in. While words feel inadequate to convey my gratitude for our opportunity to embark on this serious work, for now they will have to suffice.
Thank you for dedicating your resources to this project, and in so doing, essentially providing us with the time and space to project, amplify, and document this extended, pivotal interaction between a North Jersey Municipality, a Private Home-Owners Association, and a surviving East-Coast Indigenous Nation.
$30k is the bottom line of what I felt we would need to get the film done. However, more capital could still tangibly strengthen certain features of our film. So, in honor of the task at hand, we will continue onwards with our fundraising efforts, to make this film the best that it can be.
We are riding this momentum, and aiming onwards to $45,000!!!!
This additional 15k will allow for:
- Ongoing Coverage into the Future
- Deeper Research into the Past
- More Time in the Editing Room
- More Dutiful & Thorough Color Correction & Audio Mixing
...in addition to an even more righteously robust Tribal Honorarium...
As an expression of gratitude for their participation in this process, we have already raised 6k for the (resource-exhausted) Ramapough Lenape Nation. I will be very happy to bring a check to the tribal office the first day our funds are made available.
If we succeed in raising another 15k, another 4k will go straight to the Ramapough Lenape Nation, which will round us out at $10,000 raised for the cause.
$10,000 will make a real difference in this story.
If there are people in your networks who might be interested in entering this work with us, please consider sharing this with them:
Today I accompanied a Ramapough delegation including Chief Perry, Little Sun, and Owl, to an Indigenous People's celebration on Randall's Island, NYC, which began with a sunrise ceremony. It was a day of prayer, celebration, unity, and above all else, LIFE.
I had the joy and blessing and honor of meeting Sioux Elder Ladonna Brave Bull -- one of the early organizers of the global-consciousness-elevating effort to protect the land from the threat of the Dakota Access Pipeline at Standing Rock.
Above is a brief video which contains some of the words she shared with us today. Towards the end of the video, there is a shot of another Elder Woman bearing a small mason jar of water, in preparation of offering it back to the East River.
The water came from the Ramapo (Sweet Water) River, however the person making the prayer is not Ramapough -- she is an elder medicine Woman of an NYC-based Meshika (from present-day Mexico) community, which also prays on the criminalized, sacred land at the heart of our film Akuy Eenda Maawehlaang.
The Unity, Support, Cooperation, and Love flowing today among different peoples of different places and languages offered an ideal to aspire to.
I left the celebration at Randall's Island humbled by and grateful for the many people representing their ancestors & themselves, and sharing the prayers of their people for all of our future.
At the end of this day, I feel motivated to honor & recognize all that remains & all the we share.Thank you for your financial support.
With All Of My Love,
Brooklyn Demme & The Akuy Eenda Maawehlaang Film Team