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  • McDonalds charity excludes Native Americans/ Alaska Natives

    McDonalds charity excludes Native Americans/ Alaska Natives
    Old myths about gaming and BIA education grants maybe keeping Indians out

    ANCHORAGE AK
    Sam Lewin 12/19/2003

    One of the largest charities in the country specifically offers
    scholarships to just about every major minority group in the country except
    Native Americans. In defending the decision, officials at the Ronald
    McDonald House Charities said they offer assistance to those children who
    are a priority.

    John Smelcer is an Ahtna Athabaskan Indian and Tribal Grants Administrator
    in Anchorage, Alaska. His daughter, Zora, is a sophomore in high school. In
    September, father and daughter were waiting for an order of cheeseburgers
    at an Anchorage McDonalds and Smelcer, reading information about Ronald
    McDonald House Charities, noticed that the organization offers
    race-specific scholarships to African American, Asian American and Hispanic
    American students. The charity’s literature stated they “ offer
    scholarships to students from disadvantaged communities who face limited
    access to education and career opportunities.”

    Smelcer wondered why Native Americans are not included in the list.
    According to recent data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the median income of
    the average American Indian home is only $26,000, compared to $37,000 for
    African Americans. Only 2.1% of Native American high school students attend
    college.

    So Smelcer began to write letters to the charity, quoting figures like the
    one above, and asking for a change in policy.

    “ American Indian income is 30-40% less than the U.S. average,” stated one
    correspondence. “ Your policy, while not illegal, is entirely unethical. To
    award scholarships to three of the four national, protected minority
    groups, to purposely discriminate against one group (possibly on the basis
    of misinformation and personal prejudice) is unethical.”

    Several months later, Smelcer finally received several responses from the
    charity. Both spelled his name wrong. Ronald McDonald House Charities
    Director Susan Kerr said the exclusion of Native American children was not
    a mistake.

    “…We, just like lots of folks these days, must prioritize our dollars
    available for grants and programs,” Kerr wrote. “At this time, the chapters
    participating in the scholarship programs feel we have the scholarships
    that fit the majority of their constituents’ needs now.”

    Kerr said Native students are welcome to apply for grants under a “general
    scholarship”. She did not return a phone call from the Native American
    Times seeking comment.

    “ We must prioritize how we spend the dollars we have for scholarships,”
    wrote Ronald McDonald House Charities official Debbie Stone. “ When we look
    at the data related to need for assistance nationally, Native Americans do
    appear on the list. However, students of African American, Hispanic and
    Asian heritage still need a tremendous level of assistance.”

    Smelcer said the whole situation has left him frustrated and wondering if
    the myth that “all Indian students go to college for free” has permeated
    the charity’s management. He is also disappointed for Zora, who hopes to
    someday become a doctor.

    “ I’m just a father and looking for chances to get a scholarship for my
    daughter. It angered me that her favorite restaurant her whole life would
    not give her a chance.”
    "We see it as a desecration not only of a mountain but of our way of life. This is a genocidal issue to us. If they kill this mountain, they kill our way of life." ~Debra White Plume

  • #2
    :TD: Not only are the standing behind these "reasons", but they think it's logical? Morons.

    Comment


    • #3
      So the rest of you are you going to boycott mcdonalds? Or are you going to carry on with your apathetic lives and support an organization that takes your money but doesn't give a crap about your community?

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Gache
        So the rest of you are you going to boycott mcdonalds? Or are you going to carry on with your apathetic lives and support an organization that takes your money but doesn't give a crap about your community?
        I thought Mcdonals were franchises and I did a search for Mcdonalds franchises and on their site it said aprox. 70 % were franchises, so I dunno how much good boycoting would be ?
        I also found the website for the scolorships and it has a contact us on the right side of the page. Maybe educating them and letting them know how people feal about it ?
        http://www.rmhc.com/mission/scholarships/

        Comment


        • #5
          Damn, dude. . .I never go to McDonald's anyway. YUCK! ;)

          Comment


          • #6
            portion of franchise money always makes it up the ladder. They have to buy the product from mcdonalds corp.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Gache
              So the rest of you are you going to boycott mcdonalds? Or are you going to carry on with your apathetic lives and support an organization that takes your money but doesn't give a crap about your community?
              How bout I don't donate to McDonald's charities and donate to native american one's instead? (apathetic lives... sheesh)
              Don't worry that it's not good enough for anyone else to hear... just sing, sing a song.sigpic

              Comment


              • #8
                well theres quite a few of them in here these days blackbear, but I didnt mean everyone

                Comment


                • #9
                  Anyone know where Ronald McDonald House Charities is located? I'm moving to Chicago soon and McDonalds Corporate Headquarters is near so I can "correspond" with their office easily. Not to defend McDonalds, but when you have a headquarters in a state such as Illinois, where no Native American tribes are located, I don't think much thought is given to native issues. It prolly would be a different situation if the headquarters were in Oklahoma or South Dakota. Maybe the McDonald's Corporation just needs more enlightenment!:o

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Well now Ronald McDonald house is something entirely different from the scholarship things.. I mean it's a medical charity for children and the families of children with serious and terminal illnesses, and it's not a discriminitory area. I've known natives and whites and blacks alike that Ronald mcDonald House has helped. And there are Ronald Mc donald houses all over the US . And actually there are TWO in Oklahoma.. here check for yourself.

                    http://www.rmhc.com/mission/rmhs/search/
                    Don't worry that it's not good enough for anyone else to hear... just sing, sing a song.sigpic

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      That maddens me so much! On the other hand, I am not all that surprised, either. Something simple such as the damn media won't even cover anything good we have happening, just the negative, "typical" stuff with ndns.

                      Inconsideration of first nation peoples ignites the ire in me. :Yell
                      "Gaa wiin daa-aangoshkigaazo ahaw enaabiyaan gaa-inaabid"

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by ojibwaysweetie
                        Inconsideration of first nation peoples ignites the ire in me. :Yell
                        whats an ire? :Chatter
                        The only time its too late to start dancing is when you're dead.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Oh good, the address is corporate headquarters near where I plan to move. Gonna get acquainted with them Micky D's peoples. :D

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            ire means gettin all roud up. Havent heard that word in the last 2 generations how old is ojibsweetie ;) :p

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              :Chatter
                              "We see it as a desecration not only of a mountain but of our way of life. This is a genocidal issue to us. If they kill this mountain, they kill our way of life." ~Debra White Plume

                              Comment

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