You can help Tanka Fund support the return of buffalo to Native lands, lives, and economies through:
Join us to be part of the return — sign up to learn how you can support Native lands, lives, and economies.
Buffalo and the prairie ecosystem exist in a symbiotic relationship. Together, they once operated as the largest carbon reduction system in North America. At one time, more than 10,000 plant species were part of the prairie ecosystem. Today, only 1-3% of virgin prairie, the original grasslands, remains in America. Much of this land is on reservations. As a keystone species, buffalo play an important role in protecting and regenerating the endangered prairie.
On most reservations, dollars leave the community instead of circulating locally. The most recent national data compiled by Village Earth states that “the total value of agricultural commodities produced on Native American Reservations in 2007 totaled over $2.1 billion dollars, yet, only 16% of that income went to Native American farmers and ranchers." We can develop local economies on reservations by using buffalo as a source for local food and to export to the natural food industry.
Reintroducing buffalo into the diets of Native people is an important step toward achieving cultural and physical healing and wellness in Native communities. A return to an Indigenous diet has the potential to reverse the epidemic of diet related disease that plagues Native communities today. The revitalization of buffalo is an essential part of decolonizing our diets and our food systems.
Help us support Native buffalo caretakers through our grant programs and Tanka Resilient Agriculture.
Our regranting program is a strategy to increase access to capital for Native buffalo caretakers. We provide funding to ranchers for planning, operations, and sustainability. Tanka Fund helps Native caretakers leverage our funding to access additional resources, such as those available from the USDA.
We are launching Tanka Resilient Agriculture to provide hands-on training to Native ranchers and add value to their herds. People across the country will be able to invest in the cooperative to support Native buffalo caretakers and regenerative agriculture.