Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

August 7, 2017

Robert Free's appeal for granddaughter to become lawyer

Hi friends,
Our friend Robert Free is making a plea for financial help for his granddaughter Neemah Cobell to become a lawyer. Many of you will remember Robert from Wounded Knee in 1973, or Alcatraz, where his Tipi stood during the movement. Many of you met Robert in Venezuela, when he spearheaded the supply of heating oil from Venezuela to Native Americans. Others of you might remember Robert from Standing Rock, or welcoming you to his home in Seattle with a pot of hot soup.
Photo: Family preparing supplies for Standing Rock. Courtesy family photo.

Robert shared how his family raised funds and traveled to Standing Rock, and were followed by police on dark freezing night. This is why Neemah chose to study law in college.
"My daughters Petaki and Meesa Cobell and granddaughters Neemah and Molyka raised $1,800.00 and a car load of winter coats, socks, etc. and headed out to Standing Rock, real proud. They are carrying on the struggle. Was visiting my other grandchild, Thone Yellowbird 6th grade, and he mentioned that he had suggested to his teacher a fundraiser for Standing Rock by baking cookies. They raised $400. — with Petaki Cobell, Molyka Cobell and Neemah Cobell."
“When they headed to deliver the supplies and funds raised for Standing Rock water protectors camp, cops followed them for 40 miles before they reached  water protectors camp.  They were terrified,  as it was 1 a.m. and 30 degrees and snowing.
“They were traveling with a Dene woman veteran, and detained for an around an hour in total black snowy night.
“My granddaughter and my her mom, my daughter Petaki Cobell, got to Standing Rock and went directly to the  California kitchen, to help feed and cook as their contribution while there. That night people started pouring in with frostbite and burning eyes from the tear gases and water cannons from the attacks of hundreds of cops, and sheriffs of North Dakota.
“So these incidents are what prompted my granddaughter to chose law in her college," Robert said of the efforts to protect the water of the Missouri River from Dakota Access Pipeline.
“Well we all struggle, just trying to reduce it for her so she can concentrate. Any help gratefully appreciated.”
Robert said, "I tried to help my granddaughter, and this effort can use some help. She has worked non-stop since she could work. I would greatly appreciate it, to see if the communities respond to help move youth onto the brain trusts of skills that we need in the efforts to carry on the battles before us."
"I never got to make much $$$ to help out my children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. We struggled and got isolated from jobs and resources by those who felt threatened for us taking stands of principles for human rights for indigenous sovereignty. Now my granddaughter Neemah Cobell worked hard to get this much merit based support. But is short of some to make it all year.
"Please support her effort to become a lawyer, a Legal Eagle for sovereignty fights! Like Bernie Sanders says small amount REALLY help! if you have resources to commit to sponsor her, we are most grateful. Please at least share this link to emails and FaceBook. I will be most thankful and obliged. Just passing the hat around, for one more of our people to get an education!!" Best to you all, Robert Free
Neemah Cobell

My name is Neemah Cobell and I am an 18-year-old first-generation college student with goals and aspirations.
I am a proud member of the Blackfeet tribe who lives in Seattle, Washington. My experiences on my reservation, supporting and going to noDAPL, being a We R Native Ambassador, and marching with my Indigenous sisters at the start of the Womxn's march have influenced my desire to attend college. I plan to double major in Psychology and Political Science then move on to Law School. I want to learn how to navigate the justice system in order to help advocate for the rights of all, especially those who are marginalized both on my reservation and beyond. My goal is to be an elected member of congress and my ultimate dream is to be a Supreme Court justice. In August 2017, I will be attending Pitzer College in Claremont, California.
I'm confident that I will be successful in college because my education is important to me. I never let my learning differences get the best of me, I always ask lots of questions in school and study hard. In high school, I was on honor roll all four years and maintained a cumulative GPA of 3.6 while working all four years as a Science Interpreter at the Pacific Science Center. I use my determination to thrive in school. I know my education is not just for me; it is for my past family, my present family, and my future family. I work hard to maintain my grades because of my dream to use my passion and knowledge to become a lawyer and help those who are not being heard. I know not to say "This is how I want to help you", but instead ask "How can I help you?"
My mom is a single parent who works hard to support me. We have both been hustling and saving up for years to help me pay for college tuition. The total cost of tuition is $68,500 without the cost of travel and books. I have received a merit based scholarship and financial aid.

In addition to our family contribution, the remaining student contribution that I am responsible for is $4,200. This amount includes the cost of books. My goal is to raise this amount by August 10th. To help cover this cost I will also be working and saving this summer, and I am waiting to hear back from the last two outside scholarships I applied for.
If you believe in my goals and want to help me achieve them, please donate to help me pay for my college tuition and achieve the first step in my journey of changing this country. Even a small donation of $10, $25, or $50 will help me get closer to my goal. If you cannot donate, please share my page with others in your community. Any and all donations, no matter the size, are helpful. Thank you so much for believing in me and helping to make my dreams a reality.
Those who donate will get to follow my journey through updates that will show you how your help has allowed me to fulfill my dream! Thank you so much for the support!


No comments: