NDN Changemaker Fellowship | NDN Collective

The NDN Changemaker Fellowship

This 12-month Fellowship will be offered to 21 Indigenous Changemakers each year across Canada, the United States, the Islands of Puerto Rico, Hawaii, Guam, and American Samoa, and Mexico who are working to defend, develop, and decolonize their communities and Nations.

NDN Collective

Our Mission

NDN Collective’s mission is to build the collective power of Indigenous Peoples, communities and Nations to exercise our inherent right to self-determination while fostering a world that is built on a foundation of justice and equity for all people and the planet.  NDN works to transform systems, shift power, and generate sustainable solutions through three core strategies

Indigenous Peoples, communities and Nations defend and protect our land, air, water and natural resources
Indigenous Peoples, communities and Nations are developed in a regenerative and sustainable manner based on our values and connection to land, culture and identity
Indigenous ceremonies, cultures, languages and ways of life are revitalized, recognized and celebrated

Fellowship Purpose

The NDN Changemaker Fellowship is designed to invest in the visions, leadership, and development of Indigenous Changemakers. We believe that our people have the creativity, innovation, and determination to build healthy, resilient futures; defending our homelands and rights, developing model regenerative Nations, and decolonizing and healing our communities and families.

This 12-month Fellowship, slated to begin April 1, 2022 will be offered to 21 Indigenous Changemakers across  the continental United States., Canada, Mexico, Islands of Hawaii, and the U.S. territories of American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Changemakers will receive flexible cash awards to invest in and support their innovation as leaders.  Indigenous leaders oftentimes lack the financial wellbeing and stability required to fully invest their time and talent in creating social change in their communities. Changemakers will therefore receive flexible cash awards of $75,000 USD to provide direct investment in the fellows, their leadership development, and their work in communities.

A Fellowship plan must be created that includes required components that will support them as leaders including Theory of Change Mapping, Education & Building Skills, Healing & Wellbeing.  Online and in-person Gatherings will also be required, as well as final summary reporting following the fellowship experience.

Theory of Change Mapping

It is important for Indigenous leaders to have a bold vision for the world they are working to create as well as a theory behind how they will get there. This will help fellows increase their depth of understanding of their work and enable them to continue to refine and increase their impact. Each fellow will be required to create their own individual Theory of Change, which encapsulates their philosophy for how they believe they can ignite change in the world.

Education and building skills

It is vital that Native leaders obtain the education and skills they need to be successful in implementing their work and vision. Each NDN Changemaker Fellow will engage in skills building or education experiences during the fellowship. This can range from pursuing formal education through a degree or certificate program, to specialized training in areas such as grant writing, facilitation, or community engagement. Each fellow will identify the skills he/she/they would like to develop over the course of the fellowship to contribute to their effectiveness as a leader.

Healing and wellbeing

Native leaders take on the pain and struggle of their communities, oftentimes at the expense of caring for themselves. The reality is that their own wellbeing is fundamental to sustaining their leadership and creating impact in the world. Therefore, each NDN Changemaker Fellow will commit to focusing on their personal physical, social, spiritual, and emotional wellbeing during the fellowship. Fellows will create a plan for how they will practice self-care and create a path forward for their individual wellbeing.

Mentorship and coaching

Mentorship and coaching are fundamental to the development of strong Indigenous leaders, and can lead to increases in goal attainment, wellbeing, and overall leadership effectiveness. Fellows will be required to engage with a mentor and/or coach of their choosing at least four times (once per quarter) during the fellowship. Mentors can range from an elder or spiritual leader from your community to a professional executive coach.

Network and community building

To continue learning, growing, and creating social change, it is essential that Indigenous leaders have a strong community and network. Fellows will be required to work towards expanding their network and building a community of support around them during the fellowship. This will occur through reflections and information-sharing with other fellows and NDN staff, as well as networking and community building opportunities or conferences identified by each fellow.

Information for applicants Fellowship Requirements

Preperatory Online meetings

NDN Changemaker Fellows will convene at least twice over the course of the fellowship year.  First at the beginning of the fellowship as part of welcome and orientation to meet one another, and continue the development of their plan. An Indigenous Leadership Training Retreat will also be offered to catalyze their work and development.

Virtual or in-person gatherings

NDN Changemaker Fellows will convene at least twice over the course of the fellowship year.  First at the beginning of the fellowship as part of welcome and orientation to meet one another, and continue the development of their plan. An Indigenous Leadership Training Retreat will also be offered to catalyze their work and development.


A reporting guide will be provided to each selected fellow at the beginning of their fellowship. NDN Changemaker Fellows will be required to submit short monthly reflections through the “Changemaker Journal” online, a mid-year report and final report at the end of their fellowship year.

NDN Changemaker Alumni Circle

All NDN Changemaker Fellows that successfully complete the fellowship may participate in the Alumni Circle currently in development.


This opportunity is open to Indigenous Peoples over the age of 18 who are working in the defense, development, or decolonization of their communities and Nations whose vision aligns with an honoring of: the interconnectedness of all things, Indigenous self-determination, and equity and justice for all people and the planet.

NDN Collective defines Indigenous peoples as ethnic communities whose ancestry descends from the earliest, original inhabitants of a given region, in contrast to groups that have settled, occupied, and/or colonized the region more recently. The land on which we live and the natural resources on which we depend are inextricably linked to our identities, cultures, livelihoods, as well as our physical and spiritual well-being. We use Indigenous peoples with an “s” to recognize the diversity of individuals and groups that identify with the term, which has been distilled to a singular noun throughout history in an attempt to group our people together rather than recognize our differences and diversity. This is consistent with the UN Declaration on The Rights of Indigenous peoples.

Tax implications

Fellowship funding is taxable income in Canada, the United States, and Mexico. There are also tax implications for residents in U.S. territories.  All NDN fellows, upon notification of acceptance, should consult a qualified tax advisor on the implications of receiving the Fellowship, in order to properly plan and manage their finances.  We do not control, evaluate, endorse or guarantee any of the advice provided by an independent tax advisor. Further, we do not assume any responsibility or liability for the actions, products, services, and content provided by an independent tax advisor.

Please submit your completed Letter of Interest (LOI) by 5 p.m. Mountain Standard Time on Friday, August 6th, 2021.

Grant selection information

Full Grant Applications are expected to be invited in late August  based on review of Letters of Interest (LOI).  Final grant selections are expected to be made by early December 2021, with Fellowship start dates of April 1, 2022.


Application instructions

The "Apply" button below will bring you to the grant application portal. Please note that the Fluxx Grants Application portal will show two options:

1. New to the Grants Portal
If you are a first time user, you must register in order to receive log-in credentials to complete the LOI and potentially a grant application.  Please allow for up to 2 business days to receive login credentials.  Please check your email and spam or junk folders for your log-in credentials before inquiring further.

2. Log-in now
If you’ve  registered in the past for any NDN grant opportunity, please click Log-in Now. You do not need to register again.
Helpful hints —
  • It is best to use a computer or laptop to complete registration, log-in and/or LOI.
  • Chrome browser works best with the grant application online system.
  • It is best to register and complete log-in credentials before the grant deadline on August 6. Any attempts to register later than 3 p.m. Mountain Standard Time on Friday, August 6, 2021 does not guarantee availability for technical support or submission by the 5 p.m. deadline. Registration ends at 3 p.m. Mountain Standard Time on August 6, 2021.
  • NDN cannot make any exceptions to the LOI/grant application deadline. This includes incomplete applications, application mistakes due to user error, or faxed/emailed or mailed applications unless there has been prior approval by NDN Foundation staff.
NDN Collective
408 Knollwood Dr
Rapid City, SD 57701
P: +1 (605) 791-3999
E: [email protected]
© 2022 NDN Collective. All rights reserved.