Native sacred spaces bring connection, healing and empowerment

April 22, 2022

According to the National Alliance to End Homelessness, Native Americans experience elevated rates of homelessness. Nationally, 45 out of every 10,000 Native American people experience homelessness, while white people experience homelessness at 11.2 out of every 10,000. A 2021 report funded by the Washington State Department of Commerce found that despite making up less than 1.5% of the Washington state population, Native Americans are 8.1% of the homeless and 11.9% of unsheltered homeless.

In January of 2022, the Native-led housing and human services agency Chief Seattle Club opened its landmark affordable housing project, ʔálʔal. Pronounced “all-all” in American English, ʔálʔal means “Home” in Lushootseed, a Coast Salish language. Built on a holistic model of wraparound services to heal and bring people together, ʔálʔal’s in-house case management services and culturally responsive programming complemented 80 units of housing for previously homeless, urban Native people. 

“We comprise 32% of the chronically homeless in Seattle,” says James Lovell, Chief Seattle Club’s development and communications director. “We strive to bring these numbers to zero, and we believe that can only be done with Native leadership and values.”

Source: Native sacred spaces bring connection, healing and empowerment