The Kul Wicasa Wopasi Innovator program is a newly developed opportunity for Native American youth on the Lower Brule Reservation. The program started in early February 2021, and innovators continue to meet 2 times a week as part of this program. Currently, the group meets virtually via Google Meet with plans to meet in person whenever safe to return due to COVID restrictions.
Innovators age 14-18 are eligible for compensation at a rate of $12 per hour!
To receive payment innovators need to complete a w-4, i-9, direct deposit form, and photo release. Innovators need to submit photos or scans of these forms, along with 2 forms of ID, via email attachment to firstname.lastname@example.org
Innovators will also need to use their @wopasi.org email to accept an invite to join Quidlo time sheets, where they will document their time working as an innovator.
Payments will be processed after at the conclusion of each month.
Building a team
Connecting deeply with one another to understand who we are, what we care about, and how we should work together is important.
Team-building Tools We Use:
When we meet, we sometimes use the Circles format to help check in. It’s always ok for a team member to pass in Circles.
Team-accountability Tools We Use:
Selecting a project
Most of our work is centered around projects. Sometimes we create our own projects from scratch, and other times we collaborate with outside partners or funders to design a project together.
Project Development and Selection Tools We Use:
Our Project Ideas Board is where we describe and organize all the different projects we are potentially interested in taking on. We select projects by voting and then create a shared Google project folder to store all the project materials and documents for our team.
Planning a project
Before we begin a project, we create a plan to figure out exactly how we will turn our dreams into a reality.
Project Planning Tools We Use:
Our Project Research helps us gather and organize information about our project idea.
Our Project Plan helps us create a general overview for our entire project. This information gets published on our website for each project.
Our Project Roadmap helps us schedule the goals we will need to achieve to make our vision a reality.
Our Project Budget helps us define the potential costs associated with achieving our goals.
Working together can be hard, so we use a framework to help us come together and make progress toward our goals.
Our Collaboration Framework outlines how we work together to make positive change in the world.
Our Project Budget sets out the estimated costs for the project.
Our Project Roadmap sets out the major goals and timeline for our project.
Our Project Overview Board takes major goals from our roadmap and breaks them up into sprintable products that can each be completed by a small group working for a couple weeks.
Our Sprint Plans help us organize our work within small groups and create a shared vision for what we will create.
Our Sprint Boards help us organize our daily tasks.
Building a movement
Although much of our work is organized and funded through projects, we understand that individual projects alone will not create the kinds of futures we want to see. As a result, we also regularly connect with Indigenous activists and organizers to build broader community and power for social change.