“That’s My People” depicts the truly inspirational power of Native youth. The PSA, produced by Buffalo Nickel Creative (the same people who brought us Smiling Indians and Geronimo E-KIA), was filmed during the July 2011 National Intertribal Youth Summit, hosted by multiple government agencies including the White House at the Santa Fe Indian School in New Mexico. During the summit, youth attendees discussed key issues, and met with government officials to brainstorm substantive solutions. Throughout the summit, participants dedicated time to both star in and help film the PSA, which proudly recounts the true stories of Native people from across the country. The PSA reflects the diversity of tribal youth, the pride they take in their heritage, and their strength and motivation to enhance their communities.
During group sessions, tribal youth reflected on what they want to change and strengths they are proud of in their community, ways in which they can make this change, and who they identify as their heroes. Over the course of several days, Native youth worked together with the production crew to relay these powerful messages of positivity, forming one voice to tell the story of tribal communities through the eyes of Native youth. As depicted by this PSA, youth had clear ideas of the issues and challenges within their communities, but equally clear ideas for solutions and ways that community strengths can drive these solutions.
“That’s My People” sheds light on the situation of youth in Native communities today, conveying a strong sense of unity between young people from the many diverse traditions and histories throughout Indian Country. This video serves to show how Native youth, provided with strong guidance, a forum to express themselves and important resources, have the ability, motivation, and a uniquely powerful energy to inspire monumental change.