What is the Y-Indian Guide program?
The Y-Indian program has a long history of providing elementary school age boys and their dads with opportunities for fun times, learning, and mutual understanding.
Y-Indian Guide programs are for dads who want quality, planned, one-on-one time with their sons. Membership in the program is open to every parent with a son K to fourth grade.
Participation in activities by both father and son is a vital part of Y-Indian Guides. Father and son share in games, crafts, outings and campouts. The parent observes his child's relationship in the group, and see the child's strengths and needs, affording a basis for helping the child to grow. Likewise, the child observes the parent in action with other parents and kids. This provides the child with an important role model.
What the Program Does
Y-Indian Guides is action oriented. Members develop their own tribal programs, elect their own officers, take turns hosting tribal meetings, and conduct the business of the tribe.
Tribes get together for campouts and family outings, visit historical sites and fire stations, take hikes to parks, zoos, and farms, and plan family picnics. Participants learn about American Indian people - their culture, their customs, crafts and games, and seek to bring new understanding and appreciation of the Indians' heritage and contributions to our nation.
Craft projects include construction of tribal property such as drums, headbands, and vests. Tribes may also have campfires and hold induction ceremonies that emphasize the importance of the father/son relationship.
In addition to the activities of the tribe, the Midland Nation members participate in various Nation events throughout the year. These Nation events include four seasonal campouts, Rockhounds Night, Roller Skating, Christmas Parade, Jackalopes Night, Pinewood Derby, Family Events and participation in similar outings jointly with Indian Princesses (Father/Daughter).
Through Y-Indian Guides, the YMCA provides the following benefits to both parents and children:
Foster companionship and understanding and set a foundation for positive, lifelong relationships between parent and child.
Build a sense of self-esteem and personal worth.
Expand awareness of body, mind, and spirit.
Provide a framework to meet a mutual need of spending enjoyable, constructive, and quality time together.
Enhance the quality of family time.
Emphasize the vital role that parents play in the growth and development of their children.
Offer an important and unique opportunity to develop and enjoy volunteer leadership skills.
Offer opportunities to meet other families with children the same age.
The tribe is the basic organizational unit for Y-Indian Guide programs. Father and son attendance together is required for participation in activities. Tribes contain anywhere from eight to twelve families. Tribal meetings are usually held once a month in different members' homes, at the YMCA or other special settings, such as a fire-station. One dad is selected as chief, and the various tribal offices are delegated to other fathers and sons.
There are currently 12 tribes participating in the Midland Nation Y-Indian Guides. Tribes are typically organized based on school or neighborhood location.
Groups of tribes form a Nation. Y-Indian Guides has one nation in the area, Midland Nation. Indian Princess (Father/Daughter) includes two Nations, Pueblo and Plains.
The Longhouse is the inter-tribal council organization that supports the program planning of the tribes and Nation, coordinates Nation events, and establishes policies and standards. Council members are elected from tribal volunteers each year. The Midland Nation Longhouse Council includes a Nation Chief, Chief Elect, Scout, Pathfinder, Wampum Bearer, Tally Keeper, Sandpainter and Medicine Man.