Indigeneity Youth Programming at Bioneers 2024

The Bioneers Native Youth Leadership Program (NYLP) creates opportunities for Native youth to participate in and network at the annual Bioneers Conference and Indigenous Forum. The program prioritizes serving Native youth living in California first, followed by Native youth from across the nation. We also include Indigenous youth from Canada, Mexico and other parts of the Americas living in California, with special attention to refugees and migrants.  

The NYLP offers scholarships to Native youth to participate in all aspects of the Bioneers conference and Indigenous Forum, while offering a fully programmed, three day “Native Youth Leadership Track” with cultural arts and activities, tailored to the unique needs of Native American youth. Native youth are invited to participate in all conference events as honored guests, including talking circles, leadership development workshops, art making, and mentorship with Indigenous leaders. The Indigeneity Program’s Native Youth Leadership and Intercultural Conversations Programs will hold cultural workshops in the Kinzie Room inside the David Brower Center this year.

Our home base in the Kinzie room will be shared with Indigenous Elders and other youth attendees from all over. The space will act as a community room for youth in the Intercultural Conversations, Native Youth Leadership Program, and their invited guests. This is an intergenerational space where Indigenous youth are centered.

Invited guests are expected to follow our Protocols during workshops and discussions. Those community agreements are:

  • Ask Permission
  • One Voice, One Mic
  • Honor Confidentiality
  • Invitation not Obligation
  • Give Space, Take Space
  • Speak from your experience
  • Listen with Curiosity and Compassion
Wednesday, March 27


Did you know that art can be sustainable? Join Osage body and earth artist brooke smiley and Sozo Impact at The Lawrence to create art in our Forces That Shape the Bay outdoor exhibit. Brooke will lead visitors and Native youth from around the country in creating earth markers, a sustainable practice of structure building. With your help, we’ll make powerful art together! This event is free for Indigeneity Program youth participants. For all others, the event is free with admission to the museum. Present your Bioneers badge for 50% discount. Meet us at Lawrence Hall of Science, 1 Centennial Dr, Berkeley, CA 94720. For more information, click here.

If you are coming for a build session, please:

  • Wear clothes that can get muddy!
  • Wear closed-toed shoes!
  • You’ll be given gardening gloves, but feel free to bring your own!
  • Bring water bottle, sunscreen & hats!

2:30 to 5 pm – East Bay Solidarity Tour with Ethnic Ties

Join us in celebrating the vibrant cultural history and ever-developing landscape of the East Bay. Enjoy the sights and stories of the people behind local and national movements, who make this unique area a hub of social justice activism. Enjoy a comfortable, guided ride while we:

  • Learn about historic and current cross-cultural solidarity movements
  • Visit foundational cultural and historical landmarks crucial to local, indigenous sovereignty
  • Visit the Women of the Black Panther Party mural and mini-museum
  • Enjoy a treat from a local, Black owned business
  • Make lasting memories with locals and visitors alike, led by culturally-competent guides

Space is limited. Please reach out to to reserve your spot.

5 pm – Bioneers Youth Orientation

Meet us in the Tamalpais room inside the David Brower Center for a Bioneers-wide youth mixer on the evening of Wednesday, March 27th!

Thursday, March 28

3 to 4:15 pm Basket Weaving with Judy and Celeste Aguilar

In this workshop, you’ll work with locally harvested pine needles to craft your own basket. Participants will learn how to create the base of the basket, weaving techniques, and how to create patterns. Join mother and daughter duo, Judy and Celeste, in learning the beginnings of basket weaving.

4:45 to 6 pm – Silversmith Stamping with Keevin Hesuse

From inlay to natural patterns, Navajo silversmiths tell stories and preserve culture with their art. If you are interested in learning about these patterns and telling your story, join this workshop for an introduction to this complex art form and culture around it. Youth participants will be able to design and stamp their own pendant or earrings.

Friday, March 29

3 pm – Natural Dyes with Isabel Rodriguez-Vega

In this hands-on workshop we will explore how to create beautiful fabric dyes using the plants around us. We will learn about the impacts of the fast fashion industry and practice an alternative rooted in stewardship that prioritizes the wellbeing of people and the planet.

4:45 pm – Zine Making with Neetz

Learn how to make your own “zine”! A zine is a small handmade booklet that can be educational, artistic, or simply a way to express yourself. Making zines is one way for us to get our thoughts on the page and get to create something, and it can be a fun way to learn about ourselves and each other. We will be making zines with optional prompts while learning how to have fun with art together!