March 2022
Boozhoo! (Hello & Welcome!)
Welcome to the quarterly Maada’ookiing News & Updates! Maada'ookiing (“the distribution” in Ojibwe) is a Northland Foundation effort to strengthen relationships with Indigenous community, build partnerships with Native nations, and offer support for community members to expand capacity in Northeast Minnesota.
Welcome to Cayla Bellanger DeGroat,
Program Officer
Cayla Bellanger DeGroat joined the Northland Foundation staff in February as a Program Officer working primarily with Maada'ookiing. Born and raised in White Earth, Minnesota, Cayla is an enrolled member of Gaa-waabaabiganikaag, the White Earth Band of Ojibwe.

She is a life-long student of Indigenous history and federal Indian policy with a Bachelor of Arts in American Indian Studies and Master of Tribal Administration and Governance from the University of Minnesota Duluth.

She has served the community in several roles, including working with her tribe as Tribal Historic Preservation Officer and Homeless Housing Resource Specialist, as well as with the University of Minnesota Duluth’s Department of American Indian Studies as Community Outreach Coordinator. She has also worked with Native Organizers Alliance on grassroots political campaigns and is a current member of the City of Duluth’s Indigenous Commission.

Learn more about Cayla in her own words, below.

"As a member of the White Earth Band of Ojibwe, working towards the betterment of indigenous people and our communities is my passion and purpose in life. My family impressed upon me that each of us have gifts, and as Anishinaabeg it is our duty to share those gifts to support and uplift our community."

Q: What is most interesting or exciting to you about this work, so far?

A: Meeting the grantees and learning more about the amazing work that is being done in the community has been very inspiring and gratifying. We are fortunate to live in a community that works hard for the greater good and is always striving to do better. The Maada’ookiing program is a beautiful example of how institutions can build up communities by supporting the important work on a grassroots level.

Q: You've been writing a book that will soon be published. What is it about?

A: The book is children’s non-fiction, with the goal of introducing kids to Indigenous history and voices.

Q: When you're not busy working or writing, what are some things you enjoy doing?

A: My family keeps me very busy! I am mother to a wonderful five-year-old daughter and am expecting a son early in the Spring. In my spare time I like to recharge with reading, writing, painting, beadwork, and exploring the Lake Superior Hiking Trail.

The Northland Foundation is thrilled to have Cayla on our team and introduce her to you. She will be taking family leave very soon and will return to work with Maada'ookiing later this summer. Welcome, Cayla!
Watch Native Report on March 24th
A crew from Native Report, a TV program on WDSE-WRPT-PBS 8 and 31, started working on a story about Maada'ookiing last October. Tune in Thursday, March 24th at 7:30 p.m. on PBS North. Later, the episode will be available to watch on YouTube, and the free PBS Video App.

Ojibwemowin-Ojibwe Language


It is spring.
Apply for a Spring/Summer Grant
Reminder: May 15th is the last day to apply for the spring/summer round of Maada'ookiing grants. Applications can be submitted online at any time.

For details or questions about a potential project and application, please visit or email our Grant Program staff at [email protected].
Who Can Apply?

Individuals or small groups who are citizens, descendants, or have kinship ties or affiliation to Indigenous communities for projects of activities within the Northland Foundation's geographic service area.
Land Acknowledgement
The Northland Foundation’s geographic service area rests on ceded territory established by the Treaties of 1837, 1854, 1855, and 1866 between the Anishinaabe/Ojibwe Nations and the United States government. This region is the traditional homelands of the Ojibwe, Dakota, Northern Cheyenne, and other Native nations, and Indigenous people continue to live here. We humbly acknowledge that we are on traditional Indigenous land that holds a long history that continues to grow. Our relationships today shape and define our ongoing shared history. Together, we are actively building mutual respect based on trust and understanding. See a more detailed acknowledgement of this land and its history.