From the UNCSW
Carmen Baraka’s Native American Name is Spirit Warrior. She is an instructor of global native women’s wisdom, consciousness, activism through native traditional practices and ceremonies. Her Apache, Cherokee and Colombian-Peruvian Indian heritage bring a unique and powerful perspective to her work. She has been gathering circles to empower women and girls for over 30 years. Her work involves private invitational gatherings, community aid and education and a recent address to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women regarding the plight of Native women and girls. Her strong sense of history and injustice is driving her forward to reach new goals.
Although aware of the chain of broken treaties, the atrocities of the Indian schools, continuing racism, sex trafficking and the oppression of the reservation system, she chooses to embody the most positive aspects of her heritage: “We have endured unbelievable hardship, and we survive and reach out to bring the circle of rainbow beings together and pray for the healing for all.”
Whether exercising her skills one on one as a CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) for a neglected and abused child, providing spiritual inspiration through group invocations or framing objectives for future projects, Carmen brings a much needed empathy, understanding and sense of urgency to the issues she highlights. “My quest is to bring indigenous ceremony and circle to bridge the gap between cultures, remind us that our ancestors all began in circle and I believe finding our way back to that paradigm will be our healing.”
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