Tribal Partnership Projects

The Sierra Fund (TSF) supports many efforts to advance indigenous resilience and guardianship of the Sierra Nevada. One approach is listening to tribes to learn their visions for the future and project needs. We then, if requested, help raise resources for their tribal projects, and provide technical assistance to support the tribe to do this work independently in the future.

Partnering with Todd’s Valley Miwok-Maidu Cultural Foundation

The Sierra Fund partners with the Todd’s Valley Miwok-Maidu Cultural Foundation (TVMMCF), a tribal member-led nonprofit benefitting the Colfax-Todd’s Valley Consolidated Tribe on a project supporting their ecological and cultural restoration. The Tribe and Foundation work with the Bureau of Land Management to co-manage 59 acres of their ancestral lands near Foresthill, California. The Sierra Fund secured state grant funds to install a well and provide water storage to re-establish native plants and keep a native food garden productive. Access to water is also essential for fighting wildfire and is required by the local fire authority for the tribe’s desired cultural burning. By improving water access this project helps revitalize the Tribe’s ancestral land and creates a safe place to gather and continue their deep connection to the land and tribal culture.

Partnering with Nevada City Nisenan on a Land Back and Restoration Project

TSF partners with the California Heritage Indigenous Research Project (CHIRP), the nonprofit of the Nevada City Rancheria Nisenan Tribe, on a land back and cultural revitalization project.

Land back is a foundational need identified by CHIRP and the Tribe. TSF wrote grants in partnership with CHIRP and helped them acquire 32 acres of ancestral homeland along Deer Creek, funded by a grant from the California Natural Resources Agency (CNRA). Then CHIRP and The Sierra Fund acquired two other grants (from CNRA and the Department of Water Resources with Mountain County Funding Area/Sierra Institute) and are working on the following activities together:

  • Building a public trail across the property, in partnership with the Bear Yuba Land Trust to join two spurs of the Nevada City community Deer Creek Tribute Trail (DCTT) system.
  • Building fences to keep people out of culturally important sites and an abandoned mine contaminated “toxic hot spot” on their property.
  • Installing two interpretive trail signs highlighting Nisenan stewardship of ancestral lands.
  • Removing invasive species.
  • Thinning the forest to reduce wildfire severity/risk.