GREAT FALLS - Eating soup and listening to someone tell a story may not be the first choice for how to spend part of a day for kids today but the Little Shell Tribe hopes that kids and young adults will take advantage of the opportunity to hear what the tribe believes is an important message.
"One of the things that we use as a guiding principle is the teachings of the seven grandfathers,” explained Daniel Pocha.
Pocha wants to make sure young people understand and appreciate Native culture, "our children are the greatest gift the creator gave us. So it is of the utmost importance for us to make a better life for them and to guide them on their way."
At the tribe's first-ever Soup & Story event, he'll talk about the tribe and then share a meal of soup and fry bread with participants.
"That's Anishinabe,” Pocha said, holding up a flyer with a medicine wheel on it. "That's our medicine wheel and it's a little unique in that it tells you things, it's got more education and informative stuff on it than most medicine wheels. So I thought I would give the kids one of those and talk about that for a few minutes."
Calvin Gone III is the event coordinator; he hopes to have these events once a month with each month featuring a speaker from one of Montana's 12 tribes.
"A lot of our native youth in the urban areas, I feel like, don't have that connection. A lot of them cannot go back to the reservations,” said Gone.
He said these events have been successful in other parts of the state: "That's why I wanted to bring it here to Great Falls. It's a way, like I said, a sense of belonging for the community."
Soup & Story will be from 2 p.m. until 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 30, 2022, at the Alliance For Youth at 3220 11th Avenue South in Great Falls. For more information, call the Little Shell Tribe at 406-315-2400.