Helping Native People, Plants and Pollinators since 2013.
WHO WE ARE
The Learning Center at the Euchee Butterfly Farm is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. Our headquarters are located on the Muscogee (Creek) Nation Reservation at the Euchee Butterfly Farm, just outside of Tulsa, Oklahoma.
We are a boots-on-the-ground organization and our staff members are part of the communities that we serve. This gives us unique insight into the needs of our constituencies and what the obstacles are to our achieving mission goals, plus accords us a more accurate ability to assess if our programs are working successfully and efficiently. Our connection to the communities that we serve also allows us to create genuine stakeholder buy-in as we try to effect change.
The challenged communities and degraded habitats on tribal lands in rural Oklahoma are our primary service area. Their needs have frequently been neglected by nonprofit organizations, governmental agencies, and sometimes even tribal governments. We have been focused on these forgotten communities and habitats since 2013, with a demonstrated track record of improving the lives of Native people, plants and pollinators by harnessing the power of the monarch butterfly to inspire, uplift and educate.
The Euchee Butterfly Farm makes the work of our small nonprofit possible by providing the space for our staff offices, training events, equipment lending library and seed bank at no cost. The farm also makes the Natives Raising Natives Project possible by acting as a wholesaler/distributor for the butterflies raised by the tribal butterfly farmers and making a financial commitment with their own funds to guarantee the purchase of 100% of the butterflies raised by project participants.
WHAT WE DO
Our mission is to help improve the lives of Native people, plants and pollinators. We achieve this through innovative community-based programs that emphasize capacity building, cultural preservation, and sustainability. The central element that runs through all of our work is the power of butterflies, particularly monarch butterflies -- they inspire conservation action, facilitate youth science education and promote understanding between cultures. Wingbeats changing the world.
Our flagship program is the Natives Raising Natives Project. Its three primary goals are:
Create economic development for Native Americans through butterfly farming by providing technical training, no-cost supplies and guaranteed market access.
Provide a hands-on learning opportunity that teaches Native American youth about science, agriculture and conservation.
Raise awareness about the need for habitat conservation efforts that support native butterflies and other threatened pollinators.
We are also the founders of three other initiatives: Tribal Alliance Pollinators (TAP), which is the only Native-led organization working on grassland restoration; Tribal Environmental Action for Monarchs (TEAM), which was the first inter-tribal monarch conservation program in the world; and Food Initiative for Tribes (FIT), which is the only nonprofit addressing food deserts across tribal boundaries in Oklahoma.
Our programs are based on the principles of data-based decision making, but also rely heavily on the Traditional Ecological Knowledge of our Elders and tribal cultural advisors to guide our decision-making processes. Although our staff members are Native American, we actively engage with all communities that share the goals of our mission. We provide a nexus for governmental agencies, universities, NGOs and foundations to better understand and support the conservation, agricultural and sustainable economic development efforts of Indigenous people.