The Department of the Interior, Native Americans in Philanthropy (NAP), and the Nation Congress of American Indians (NCAI) will host a listening session on public-private partnerships. The listening session will focus on ways the federal government, philanthropy, and Tribal organizations can work together to support Tribal Nations in leveraging resources and investments in Tribal communities and Tribally-led initiatives. The session will include an overview of NAP's Tribal Nations Initiative and themes heard during regional listening sessions and a discussion by DOI of opportunities for public-private partnerships and partnership development.
In 2019, U.S. foundational and corporate giving totaled $96 billion, however only 0.4 percent of philanthropic funding went to Native American communities. The federal budget for Tribal programs is over $22 billion annually. The federal government has a special trust responsibility and relationship to Tribes that includes programmatic and funding responsibilities. Philanthropy cannot, and should not, take the place of federal funding or programs and vice versa; however, the federal government should work with Tribes, Tribal organizations, and philanthropy to create public-private partnerships that increase resources and foster culturally appropriate, Tribally-led programs and projects. Building on the work done through NAP's Tribal Nations Initiative, and in recognition of the Department's government-to-government relationship, DOI, in partnership with NAP and NCAI, seek input from Tribal Leaders on the following questions:
- What is the appropriate role of the federal government and Tribal organizations in supporting Tribally-led public-private partnerships?
- Many federal departments already work in collaboration with the philanthropic and private sectors through Offices of Strategic Partnerships (e.g. HUD, State Department, USDA, USAID, FEMA, NPS, Forest Service, NASA, HHS, Peace Corps, Millennium Challenge Corporation, and the VA). These offices have helped to bring new solutions and additional funding and resources to communities that would not have been realized through the federal government alone. Should Indian Affairs support a partnerships office that would focus on working with Tribes to build public-private partnership? If so, what is the appropriate role for the office and how could the office best support Tribes?
- Potential areas for partnership development could focus on Tribally-led conservation, economic development, and education initiatives, including Native language preservation and restoration. What guidance do Tribal Leaders have on developing partnerships in these areas? Are there other priority areas that should be considered?