Give Local 2022

Here at the Institute for American Indian Stuides we are thrilled to announce our museum is participation in Give Local for Greater Waterbury & Litchfield Hills!

Give Local is a 36-hour online campaign that unites donors, businesses, and local charities to provide much-needed support for our community. Launched in 2013 by Connecticut Community Foundation and presenting sponsor Ion Bank Foundation, Give Local Greater Waterbury and Litchfield Hills has raised $11 million since its inception and has supported more than 300 local nonprofit organizations.

Thanks to generous sponsors as well as funds from the Foundation, nonprofits will earn bonus dollars for every donor they secure and will have an opportunity to vie for thousands of dollars in cash prizes! All of this adds to the fun and excitement while raising essential funds for the work of our local nonprofits.

Countdown to Give Local








This year, our focus for fundraising is on our Community Development & Outreach. Below, you will see three categories of programming we are raising funds for: The Culture Keepers’ Series, that bring Indigenous voices to a wider audience; Our Cultural Knowledge Workshops, workshops led by Native peoples for Native peoples to reclaim lost knowledge & Emerging Native American Artist Fund, that supports Native artists (of all mediums) to practice and promote their art. 

Culture Keepers’ Series

The Culture Keepers’ Series includes presentations & workshops that share the Indigenous experience with a wider audience. The goal is to  increase the visibility of Native American cultures in order to foster awareness, empathy and respect. 


Cultural Knowledge Workshops

In 2021, IAIS hosted a Feather Fan (also known as a Prayer Fan) workshop for members of the Golden Hill Paugussett, led by our Education Director, Darlene Kascak, a member of the Schaghticoke Tribal Nation. The workshop quickly filled it’s capacity, and was full of multi-generational family members from the tribe. Here at the museum, we quickly realized the need for these types of workshops within Native communities. Our museum was used as a venue so that tribal members could celebrate their cultural heritage.

That Feather Fan workshop, is an example of a workshop from our Cultural Knowledge Series. They are Native led programs for Native community members. These programs provide the space for modern communities’ to reconnect with ancestral knowledge systems through reclaiming lost knowledge,  sharing experiences and making new connections. The museum will act as a space for groups to share experiences and foster dialogue. The goal is to improve and promote the well-being of Native communities & be a part of passing down culture for generations to come.


Emerging Native American Artist Fund

IAIS Emerging Artist Program (EAP) actively supports Native voices through providing opportunities such as features in museum exhibits & public programs. To further support the EAP, this year, IAIS is thrilled to announce the addition of the Emerging Artist Scholarship, which provides a cash fund for Native artists across New England and New York.

Here at IAIS, we are only a bridge; we support all who wish to share their voices within the context or our larger community both physically and digitally. Through EAP, artists of all mediums will be given the opportunity to bring their talents to Northwestern Connecticut, whether virtually or in-person. Our goal is to build meaningful and long lasting relationships with Native American artists, and to offer opportunities for all of our communities to engage in more impactful ways. We are only one drop of rain, but every drop feeds the river and fills the ocean.


Get Involved

We need your help to make our campaign a success! There are many ways to lend us a hand from donating & becoming a Peer-to-Peer fundraiser, to spreading the word throughout your community! 


The fastest way to ensure these programs endure for generations to come is to directly donate to our museum! No gift is too small!!


Help us get the word out on social media! This can include stories, posts, facebook events, liking & sharing.


A P2P Fundraiser is a supporter who rallies around our cause to fundraise on our behalf. These supporters create their own fundraising page as a spin off of your main Give Local Greater Waterbury and Litchfield Hills profile. Fundraisers will share that page with their network to expand the reach of our cause and bring in new donors. These individuals are passionate about the work we do, and use their voice to make a difference!

Learn more on how to become a P2P Fundraiser for IAIS!