Indigenous Community Partnerships Program

Building Capacity For Comcaac Leadership And Equitable Relations Between Communities, Researchers, And Educational Groups

". . . devoted to connecting research and conservation in the region with Comca’ac (Seri) traditions, knowledge, self-determination and conservation practice."

The Center’s Indigenous Community Partnerships Program (ICPP) vision started over a decade ago and it is currently devoted to connecting research and conservation in the region with Comca’ac (Seri) traditions, knowledge, self-determination and conservation practice. The projects of this partnership will build upon the Center’s long-term bio-cultural interrelationships with Comca’ac community members and with Mexican and American scientists and academics doing research in the Comcáac territory within the greater southwest region. Comca’ac groups and individuals interested in combining the knowledge of their elders with the science methods of their Western colleagues’ work with the staff, students and interns at the Center to develop effective resource management practices in their region. The ICPP contributes to the development of conservation strategies appropriate for the region and challenges of the 21st century and learns from the Comca’ac traditional knowledge and practice.

The goals for this alliance are to:

  • Create strategies to build skills, knowledge and experience leading to opportunities in research and resource management for Comca’ac community members.
  • Support and initiate multicultural approaches to education, research and conservation by creating fellowship and scholarship opportunities for Comca’ac to work alongside Mexican and American scientists and academics at Prescott College field station and in the region.
  • Strengthen current and past efforts facilitating an exchange of traditional knowledge with scientific research methodology. This exchange is especially critical during an era of generational transition.
  • Enrich the educational environment, perspectives and activities of Prescott College students, faculty and other researchers in the region through contact with Comca’ac elders and youth and opportunities to learn about and support traditional knowledge.
  • Create opportunities in education, research and conservation for young Comca’ac.
  • Incorporate Comca’ac projects into existing cooperative projects. Compile and present existing and future data for the benefit of current and future research and policy development.

The project specifically targets Comca’ac groups and individuals working to develop leadership skills, acquire traditional knowledge and appropriate research and conservation methods to manage and protect their rich natural and cultural heritage. While conflict typically exists between generations, many elders recognize education as an important goal for Comca’ac youth and support Prescott College’s interest and approach. This project will provide a new Comca’ac generation with the tools to combine past success and practice with new techniques that might be helpful in a challenging and complex future. Most importantly, the project relates the Prescott and Comca’ac goals and initiatives in education, research and conservation while striving to enrich the bio-cultural experience of both.