Image for April Positive Change: Wakan Tipi Awanyankapi

Create Positive Change

Each time you shop at the co-op, you have a chance to directly support local nonprofits by donating your 10-cent reusable bag credits and rounding up your purchases to the nearest dollar. It may only be a few cents or spare change, but your generosity makes a huge impact — to the tune of over $10,000 each month for our Positive Change recipients!

The mission: Engaging people to honor and care for our natural places and the sacred sites and cultural values within them.

Wakan Tipi is a conservation non-profit working in several parks on the east side of St. Paul. The main site Mississippi Market is supporting through Positive Change in April is the Wakan Tipi Center, currently being built at Bruce Vento Nature Sanctuary. 

Wakan Tipi’s Main Program Areas 

  • Urban Conservation and Restoration: Sixteen years after Bruce Vento Nature Sanctuary opened to the public, plant and animal life proliferation has returned, but much work remains. Guided by Dakota values and an updated Natural Resources Management Plan, Wakan Tipi continues its partnership with the City of Saint Paul for more than fifteen Restore! events, engaging over 400 volunteers to help remove displaced plant relatives, conducting wildlife and habitat surveys, and planting trees, wildflowers, grasses, and seeds. In 2021, Wakan Tipi also increasingly framed restoration activities from an Environmental Justice perspective. 
  • Cultural Connections and Healing: All the work —at Wakáŋ Tipi / Bruce Vento Nature Sanctuary and throughout the East Side — takes place on Dakota land. It is Wakan Tipi’s duty to honor and care for this land with the perspectives, language, and culture of the Dakota people at the forefront of the work. To this end, Wakan Tipi hosts a variety of programs that reinforce the relationships Indigenous people have with these spaces, including Dakota Storytelling, Plant Medicine Workshops, and Medicine Bundle making.
  • Environmental Education: Knowledge is a critical component to the protection and support of recovering ecosystems. Wakan Tipi relies on a growing network of Native and non-Native knowledge-keepers passionate about sharing their expertise. They work with artists, ecologists, Tribal Nations, and many other loving community members who share their cultural and traditional ecological knowledge and help to share these teachings with the larger community. 

Donations will help Wakan Tipi provide programming in environmental conservation that connects the community to the cultural, historical, and ecological significance of the Wakan Tipi Center site at Bruce Vento Nature Sanctuary.