Tribal Youth Hosted Empty Bowls to Benefit People Helping People

Tribal youth from the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians Tribe demonstrated ‘amuyich (Samala for generosity) when they presented a check in the amount of $2,765 to People Helping People’s food program last week.
Courtesy Photo

The tribal youth raised most of the funds during an Empty Bowls event hosted by the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians Foundation. The children were on hand to serve soup, bread and iced tea. They also provided hand-painted ceramic bowls they created at Michelle Griffoul Studios in Buellton, for a silent auction. In total $2,439 was raised through lunch and auction sales.

“The Board, staff, and clients we serve at People Helping People (PHP) are honored that the Tribe decided to commemorate “World Food Day” with an Empty Bowls luncheon,” said Dean Palius, executive director for People Helping People. “This event was recognition that even here in our valley there are families and individuals struggling to put enough food on the table. We are deeply appreciative of the financial helping hand extended to help support PHP’s food program.”

In addition, tribal youth donated $326 they raised through the sale of note cards. “Our youth have sold note cards featuring their original photography and artwork this past year. They earned more than $2,000 and contributed 100% of the proceeds to local causes that are important to them,” said Dr. Niki Sandoval, the Tribe’s education director. “Bridgehouse Emergency Shelter, Growing Solutions Restoration and Education Institute, Santa Maria Valley Humane Society, Santa Ynez Valley Humane Society, and Santa Ynez Valley People Helping People have all received contributions from tribal youth.”

The youth have also created holiday cards for sale. To purchase, contact Dr. Sandoval at 805-688-7997 or

The Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians Foundation has donated more than $15 million to hundreds of groups, organizations, and schools in the community and across the nation as part of the long-standing Chumash tradition of giving. The Foundation is governed by the tribe’s Business Committee.


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