I, Ashia Ray, was born, raised, and continue to raise my family on the original homelands of the Wampanoag and Massachusett Tribal Nations on the land the US government currently calls Eastern Massachusetts. I take responsibility with gratitude and intent to honor the stories, members, traditions, and cultures of these nations. My living here makes me a complicit beneficiary and participant in colonization.
This compels me to acknowledge the violence and genocide toward Indigenous people local to me, both past and present. I take responsibility for continuing to learn and listen from Indigenous people, boost their voices, support their efforts, and take daily action in my role running Raising Luminaries, and in my role as a parent, to dismantle colonialism. I will never finish learning how to decolonize my practices in parenting and leading Raising Luminaries. If (when) I overstep or make problematic mistakes, I am grateful for the gift of honest feedback on how I can do better.
More About Our Local Nations
This is a non-exhaustive list based on websites I could find. Comment below if with any I’ve left out.
#OwnVoices Indigenous-Led Organizations
Since I can am a US settler (a descendant of immigrants and refugees), my depth of knowledge in Latinx and Indigenous experiences is severely limited. The following are #OwnVoices resources investigating kidlit through a decolonizing lens.
I haven’t had a chance to thoroughly vet every book I read through their filter, and sometimes our perspectives differ. But with respect to Latinx & Indigenous representation, they have a wealth of information and experience I am oblivious to and these resources are an enormous gift to the world:
- American Indians In Children’s Literature
- De Colores: The Raza Experience In Books For Children
- Quick reference books: A Broken Flute & An Indigenous People’s History of the United States
- First Light Foundation & Annawon Weeden
For a full list of Indigenous organizations I’ve directed funds to, check out the Financial Accountability Statement.
Members of Raising Luminaries [RL] and our ancillary organizations Books For Littles [BFL] and the Student Ignition Society [SIS], including our supporters, readers, contributors, and the founder of RL and author of this statement, Ashia R. are responsible for transparent and clearly stated missions, objectives, goals, and procedures in an effort to create kind and courageous spaces and resources.
Check out the Accountability Statement & Guidelines for more.
This document was last edited in June of 2020 by Ashia R.