Champions for Change Application NOW OPEN!

The Center for Native American Youth's Champions for Change (CFC) program is designed to recognize positive youth-led efforts, share stories of inspiration, and help young leaders develop their advocacy skills. The CFC program gives Native youth a national platform to:

  • Educate new stakeholders about the challenges and strengths of Native communities,
  • Lift up youth perspectives on the issues they find most important,
  • Celebrate their innovative ideas and hard work to tackle tough issues, and
  • Receive support and encouragement to help them grow as strong leaders and advocates.

We are now accepting applications for the 2018 class of Champions for Change! Apply today or share the application with other young Native leaders in your network. The deadline to apply is Friday, November 10, 2017.


Champions for Change:

  • Identify as American Indian, Alaska Native, and/or Native Hawaiian;
  • Are between 14 and 23 years old at the time of their application; and
  • Demonstrate leadership and service within their communities.


*Note that all of the following materials must be submitted online by November 10, 2017.

  • Youth Application
  • Adult Recommendation Form #1
  • Adult Recommendation Form #2
  • Peer Recommendation Form

Click here to begin a new application!

Contact or (202) 736-2905 with questions.




Mariah Gladstone Releases New Indigikitchen Video

Mariah Gladstone is a 2017 Champion for Change, decolonizing Native diets through her online cooking show Indigikitchen. Her videos teach viewers to create delicious meals from traditional ingredients that would have been found on the North American continent prior to settlers' arrival. Mariah's passion for this work comes from the knowledge that the disproportionate rate at which Native peoples are affected by diabetes is due in large part to historical attacks on Native diets carried out by the US government in an attempt to colonize America. To learn more, check out Mariah's TedX Talk, delivered in Bozeman, Montana. 


SAMHSA Youth Empowerment Webinar Spotlight: Mariah Gladstone

The Center for Native American Youth partnered with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) Tribal Training and Technical Assistance (TTA) Center for a three-part webinar series on youth empowerment in Indian Country.  


2017 Champions for Change Speak at Casey Family Programs Meeting with Tribal Leaders

Tuesday, May 2, 2017, Baltimore, MD — 2017 Champions for Change, Nancy Deere-Turney (Muscogee (Creek) Nation) and Sam Schimmel (Kenaitze/St. Lawrence Island Siberian Yupik), along with CNAY staff, attended Casey Family Program's National Tribal Leader Meeting held at the Marriott Inner Harbor Camden Yards.