L.A. urban members meet with GRIC delegation for services and information
Roberto A. Jackson
Gila River Indian News
Jenise Gary traveled to the United American Indian Involvement Community Center in Los Angeles to meet with representatives from the Gila River Indian Community, as did Destiny Acevedo and numerous other Community members who reside in California, for a special outreach provided by GRIC to dispense information and provide services for the urban members that live in the Golden State.
Gary called the opportunity, “comforting,” as she and her daughter met with staff from the Per Capita Office.
Acevedo came with her mother and found some much needed information regarding her education.
“It’s good to talk to tribal education because I know they can help me with college funding,” she said.
Over 12 GRIC departments, entities or programs set up booths at the UAII center in downtown Los Angeles on Feb. 29, to answer questions, update information and provide services that may be difficult for those members hundreds of miles away.
Along with the departments and other representatives, GRIC leadership attended to meet with the L.A. urban members and provide updates on issues back in the Community.
Gov. Stephen Roe Lewis was glad to see the members in attendance use the opportunity to ask about everything from home sites, to enrollment, legal services, behavioral health, veterans issues, burial assistance and much more.
“This is an important time to do that,” said Lewis regarding the first-hand services available on Leap Day.
Gov. Lewis was joined by District 4 Community Council Representatives Monica Antone and Pamela Johnson as well as District 6 Community Council Representative Terrance B. Evans. Each introduced themselves and took advantage of the opportunity to meet with members that don’t often get a chance to return to the Community.
One familiar face at the meeting was Omerlene Thompson. From District 6, Thompson was selected as a 2019 American Indian Heritage Month Honoree by the Los Angeles City/County Native American Indian Commission, and Gov. Lewis made a special presentation to the woman who has helped so many people. He recognized Thompson with a proclamation honoring her urban Community social work and advocacy.