Walton Family Foundation Commits $6 Million to Tribal Nations Conservation Pledge
(Washington, DC) The Walton Family Foundation has made a $6 million commitment to the Tribal Nations Conservation Pledge. The pledge, announced Tuesday in a summit of tribal nations and conservation leaders at the White House, is designed to support the conservation efforts of tribes, inter-tribal organizations and tribal consortia. To date, 15 funders have committed over $100 million over the next five years to support this work.
The American West is grappling with the worst megadrought in at least 1,200 years. Tribal communities are being disproportionately hit with devastating water shortages. Native households are 19 times more likely than white households to lack indoor plumbing. Notably, many tribes in the Colorado River Basin hold the oldest water rights in the region.
Moira Mcdonald, director of the Walton Family Foundation's Environment Program, issued the following statement:
“On World Water Day, we are all called to seek solutions to protect water during climate change. Helping to support the work of tribes so they can help lead on water conservation is an outstanding way to do that.
"Historically, tribal nations have not been included in decision-making on water management. That has been both unjust and unwise.
"Greater collaboration with tribes will help lead to better decisions. Together, we can find solutions to the water crisis so that nature and people can thrive together.
“We believe it is our role as a foundation to work in partnership with tribes to support their interests in water resilience. We respect the sovereignty and self-determination of all tribes. As such, we seek only to provide support to enable tribal nations to advance their interests.”
About the Walton Family Foundation
The Walton Family Foundation is, at its core, a family-led foundation. Three generations of the descendants of our founders, Sam and Helen Walton, and their spouses, work together to lead the foundation and create access to opportunity for people and communities. We work in three areas: improving K-12 education, protecting rivers and oceans and the communities they support, and investing in our home region of Northwest Arkansas and the Arkansas-Mississippi Delta. To learn more, visit www.waltonfamilyfoundation.org.