Navajo-Hopi Nations,Flagstaff & Winslow News
Wed, April 21

Hopi Foundation adapts, still working to serve community

Recipients receive firewood as part of a home heating fuel project made possible by the Hopi Foundation Emergency Assistance Fund. (Photo/The Hopi Foundation)

Recipients receive firewood as part of a home heating fuel project made possible by the Hopi Foundation Emergency Assistance Fund. (Photo/The Hopi Foundation)

KYKOTSMOVI, Ariz. — The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic are extending far beyond people’s physical health.

Along with shortages of supplies, many people are facing a loss of income as non-essential businesses are halted and the community is under a shelter-in-place advisory across the Hopi and Navajo reservations.

In rural areas like the Hopi reservation, these shortages are even more of a concern because rural residents do not have the convenience of checking several local stores daily to see if they have restocked. As the demand for out-of-stock items causes price increases, many families who live paycheck to paycheck are facing grim outlooks. On Hopi, this impact may be exponential, as many Hopis make a living as artists, vendors, or contractors/services-for-hire.

Hopi Foundation assists with mitigation efforts

Heroes are most often found during times of crisis. Across the country, people are risking their health to make sure that people can get healthcare, food, groceries, mail, etc. Elsewhere, numerous individuals eager to help others in need, have reached out to nonprofits like the Hopi Foundation to inquire about what they can do during this time.

“We’ve had numerous concerned and generous individuals reach out to us to ask how they can help or where they can direct donations to assist those in need,” said Monica Nuvamsa, Executive Director for The Hopi Foundation. In fact, The Foundation has an Emergency Assistance Fund which allows for receiving and granting funds to support local emergency needs of the Hopi community. “This is exactly why we have this Emergency Assistance Fund, because we know our community members will need help in times of crises.”

The Hopi Foundation Emergency Assistance Fund offers aid to local villages, organizations and individuals with the intent to distribute supplies and resources to groups in critical need, such as low-income households, elders, single-parents, those with disabilities, or people with little-to-no access to transportation. Funds can be used to assist these groups with home-heating fuel shortages, natural disaster relief for access to safe shelter, food, and clean, potable water, and public health and safety in the event of disease outbreak, contamination, etc.

First Mesa Baptist Church and Pastor Taeil Lim recently contributed $2,500 to the fund.

“Originally that fund was for our church kitchen repair work, however, our church members generously agreed with one voice,” Lim said.

Another Hopi community member who is supporting the Emergency Fund is Wendi Lewis. Her running apparel business, Strong Ones, will be partnering with another local business, Honyoutink, and donating all proceeds to the fund.

The Hopi Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that focuses on strengthening the community by improving the skills and resources of its community members. Their Emergency Assistance Fund is just one of several services provided by The Hopi Foundation. Many of the services their programs provide -substance abuse mentoring, farming workshops, leadership trainings, free tax services- are stalled with the current quarantine policies. One of their programs, KUYI - Hopi Radio, is at the frontlines of providing Hopi communities with current and important news regarding COVID-19.

Arizona Gives Day

The Hopi Foundation and its programs are participating in Arizona Gives Day on April 7th. Arizona Gives Day is a giving movement created to generate support for Arizona nonprofits through fundraising and increased awareness.

Programs at The Hopi Foundation hope to raise funds during this campaign so that services may continue once the suspension of services are lifted or as employers redefine the delivery of service under the changing environmental conditions.

The Hopi Foundation would normally invite the public to learn more about their programs and services at their annual Open House but will instead have a bigger presence on social media so followers can celebrate with the Foundation in reaching their fundraising goal of $35,000. Additionally, the Foundation and its programs will host a Virtual Pledge Run to generate support for Arizona Gives Day, and to encourage people to be active during this crisis. The ‘virtual’ format means that participants can run where and when they want and will send in their times to compare with other runners. Registration for the virtual run is open and participants can choose to run either a 1 or 2 mile, or a 5K on their favorite trail on April 4th, 5th, or 6th. Runners are encouraged to post a photo or video from their run with the hashtags #HopiGivesMiles #HopiGives #AZGivesDay #philanthrHopi.

More information or to register for the Hopi Foundation’s Virtual Pledge Run contact Samantha Honani at To learn more about or donate to the Hopi Foundation and any of its programs for Arizona Gives Day, visit

Information provided by the Hopi Foundation

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