Miss and Jr. Miss Salt River Court Participate at 36th Annual Gila River Youth Conference

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Photo courtesy of Miss Salt River Committee

On July 15, the Akimel O’odham/Pee-Posh Youth Council held their 36th Annual Gila River Youth Conference at the Gila River Indian Community.

The Miss and Jr. Miss Salt River Court was invited to attend the conference to be part of the shared experience, discussing topics that will help each other through young adulthood and working on icebreaker exercises.

“The icebreakers we did taught me that it’s important for us to get to know each other and learn our kinship. We may find out we are related!” said Miss Salt River Kennise McGertt, “… or find that others share similar thoughts and experiences as ourselves. The ladies and I had a wonderful time building relationships and creating meaningful memories with everyone.”

McGertt said that one of the presenters shared that as Indigenous people, “there is a need for us to be more of a ‘community’ or ‘family,’ meaning that rather than put each other down, you build one another up.

“I agree that we need to see more kindness not only toward each other, but toward ourselves as well.”

Jr. Miss Salt River Jizelle Juan participated in a first-aid workshop as well as a Piipaash Protocol workshop.

“I wanted to learn more about the Piipaash to better represent the members of our Community,” said Juan. “I am looking forward to more experiences and interactions with our sister tribe over the next year.”

Juan also wants to encourage SRPMIC youth to get involved with the Young River Peoples’ Council or any type of cultural or intertribal group or organization.

Patricia Woody, 1st Attendant to Jr. Miss Salt River, said the conference was a fun experience. It was her first time attending a youth conference, and she learned how to properly call 911 to give them the most vital information during an emergency.

“I may not use this technique now, but it doesn’t hurt to know for the future. I can’t wait to attend future events!” said Woody.

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