GREAT FALLS — The Blackfeet Tribe crowned Alia Heavyrunner as their 2019-2020 'Miss Blackfeet' in July.
Now, as she approaches the half-way mark of her reign, she's spreading the word about the causes close to her heart.
Heavyrunner was at Paris Gibson Education Center in Great Falls on Monday to host a film about the importance of cultural connection. She frequently speaks in front of students in an effort to share her culture and talk about the issues she feels are important: education, suicide prevention, and tolerance for native traditions.
The young tribal representative also hopes to use her title as a platform to educate students about the importance of embracing one's culture and realizing their potential.
"The main thing I want to do is go to Native American schools to talk to them about education. Education is key for our youth and for our future leaders, and how we could just be more than just staying on our Rez,” Heavyrunner said. “We could be the next doctors, lawyers, nurses, and we could go farther than that."
Miss Blackfeet will visit several educational institutions during January. You can keep up with Miss Blackfeet or contact her for speaking engagments on her Facebook page, or by contacting her mother Anjalina Vaile.