Association on American Indian Affairs

Youth Summer Camps

We are now accepting grant proposals for the 2015 Summer Camp Season.



Proposals for Native-run youth summer camps that focus on language preservation, cultural preservation or diabetes education/youth health and wellness will be accepted until 5:00 pm Eastern Time on June 4, 2015. Grant proposals received after 5:00 pm Eastern Time on June 4th will only be considered if funds have not been otherwise allocated.

For many years AAIA has provided small seed grants to tribes and Native-run organizations for their youth summer camp programs that focus on language preservation, cultural preservation or diabetes education/youth health and wellness. Our summer camp budget is extremely small. We rely on outside funding sources and are extremely grateful for the generosity of our donors. Because we depend on outside resources, our ability to fund summer camps may change from year to year. Additionally, funds may be allocated toward camps that have a particular focus per the donorís request, therefore we may have larger amounts of monies available for certain types of camps.

Those camps that will be held prior to June 4th should submit their proposals immediately and contact the Summer Camp Coordinator directly at 240-314-7155. Summer camps that are being held prior to the June 4th must submit their proposals prior to the start of their camp to be considered. Camp proposals received after their camp has taken place (even if the proposal is received before the proposal deadline) will not be awarded. If awarded, funds will not be disbursed prior to the start of your camp. Funding will be disbursed as soon as possible after the proposal deadline.

For camps taking place after June 4th, if awarded, funds will not be disbursed until the week prior to your camp.

This is a competitive process. It is likely that not all camps will be awarded. For the 2014 Camp Season, seventeen proposals were received and nine camps were awarded.

Please see the RED BOXES BELOW for information about how to submit a proposal.



Summer Camps 2014

Below are some of the photos which were received from some of the camps AAIA provided funding to during the 2014 summer camp season. Thanks to these organizations for sharing!

Zuni Youth Enrichment Project
Youth Summer Camp
Zuni, New Mexico

The ZYEP camp focused on promoting cultural connectedness as well as good health through physical activity and nutrition. Campers learned about traditional waffle gardening, and traditional dance and pottery. Sixty-five campers age 6-11 participated in this camp along with 15 teen mentors.


Pathkeepers for Indigenous Knowledge
Native Youth Culture Camp
Culpeper, Virginia

The Pathkeepers camp, which is open to Native youth from across the country, aimed to provide opportunities that build self-esteem, leadership skills, traditional knowledge, and health and wellness through teachings by elders on traditional foods and participation in traditional cultural activities including beadwork, artwork and poetry. Thirty youth, age 11-16 participated in this camp which is held on a horse farm in rural Culpeper, Virginia.


Saint Paul Council of Churches
Department of Indian Works
Youth Enrichment Program
Saint Paul, Minnesota

Sixty campers, kindergarten through sixth grade participated in the program which aimed to increase cultural awareness, self-esteem and life skills through traditional crafts, culturally based health activities and exercise activities.




Summer Camps 2012/2013

Below are photos and video which were received from some of the camps AAIA provided funding to during the 2012/2013 summer camp season. Thanks to these organizations for sharing!

Dakotah Wicohan Summer Camp 2012

Sicangu Lakota Summer Camp 2013