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How five large trees in remote Oregon ended up as winter housing for water protectors, including their first newborn baby.

“This feels like a new America I want to be a part of,” said Musselwhite, 41, a carpenter and woodworker based in a rural community tucked into the mountains that cross the Oregon-California border.

These houses are part of a project that began in the Yale Creek watershed southwest of Medford, Oregon. Early in October, as the Standing Rock Sioux tribe and supporters intensified their opposition to construction of the Dakota Access pipeline across Indian treaty lands and the Missouri River, Musselwhite and his neighbors wondered what they could do to help from so far across the country.

Winter was on its way. The Standing Rock community’s tents and summer tipis would not work in 20-below weather. A call went out from the Red Warrior Women’s Media Collective for donations of winter housing, something the rural Oregon forest community knew it could provide.

“This is a time for change,” said Jessica Lynn, one of Musselwhite’s neighbors. “Standing Rock is a platform to heal and save our planet—and so much more.”

Photo by Roger Peet

One of them is designated for Mni Wiconi, the first baby born at what the water protectors call “the struggle.” She was born in a tipi October 12. Her name is the Lakota phrase for “Water is Life,” a central message of the Standing Rock Sioux protest that began in April. Mni Wiconi will move into her new home, which is swaddled in lumber selected just for her: It comes from a tree on land near Yale Creek owned by Rocky Verdugo, who felled it and donated the wood. Verdugo’s nephew, Lowischa Falls-Rock, is Mni Wiconi’s father.

Photo by Roger Peet 

Eric Hansen, founder of True South Solar in Ashland, Oregon, spent the weekend at Standing Rock installing the two solar energy systems he donated to power the Oregon community’s tiny houses.

Photo Eric Hansen

“All we’re doing is lending our support to something that already existed and will continue to grow after we leave,” he said. “We wanted these folks—these brave people—to know they are not alone, that we’re here and in solidarity with their resistance: thousands of people working together, sharing stories, fighting a pipeline with prayer and creativity.”
 Source

 This baby born on Standing Rock  was named Mni Wiconi, which means Water is Life

Responses to "From Across the Country, Gifts of Tiny Houses Arrive for Standing Rock "

  1. Roxanne Sztapka says:

    I support your fight and concerns. WATER IS LIFE AND WICONI IS BEAUTIFUL.

  2. That is a beautiful baby. Congratulations to her parents, we are standing with you. Stay strong.

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