AICHO, American Indian Community Housing Organization, is an organization focused on strengthening and supporting the Indigenous population in Duluth. While the main endeavor of the organization is to provide housing and supportive services, it also manages artistic, cultural, climate change, and food sovereignty initiatives in the area. AICHO has partnerships with other organizations to provide mental health services, homelessness assistance, legal aid, and more. It also provides several children’s programs to engage and encourage leadership in Native children living in the housing sites, from trips to wild rice fields to selling their own food at the farmer’s market.
AICHO is committed to spreading awareness about and finding cultural solutions to climate change. The organization received a grant in 2017 from Enterprise Community Partners which was used to build two urban gardens and a solar garden on the roof of the Dr. Roberts Powless Cultural Center which can hold 16.5 kilowatts of solar energy. Through these funds the organization has also been exploring worm composting and rainwater collection systems and is implementing strategies at its urban gardens and partnered sites. The Water Protector mural, designed by NSRGNTS with assistance from over 50 community members, was completed in August 2017 using some of the grant funds and overlooks the solar array. In addition, AICHO recently acquired property in Central Hillside that it is renovating into the Niiwin Market, an indoor farmer’s market/community center. The Niiwin market will be a site that provides the community with access to local, indigenous food and healthy, grab-and-go alternatives that currently are not an accessible option in the neighborhood.
Additional projects include the AICHO galleries, the Dabinoo’Igan Emergency Domestic Violence Shelter, and the 2301 Arts Building, all of which are at different levels of development and require different levels of support.
Image by NSRGNTS, artwork by Votan Ik
Now that you’ve learned more, the best way to create change is by getting involved! Donate your money or time, find support, and take action. Citizen climate action means a stronger, healthier, more vibrant Duluth!
Learn more and get involved with AICHO.