The Alaska Native Heritage Center is excited to host a two-day fish distribution event as part of “Operation Fish Drop,” a grassroots initiative to distribute over 12,000 pounds of frozen fish to the Alaska Native Community through local, state, federal, and international entities.
Created to meet a community-wide need during the pandemic, Operation Fish Drop will provide 25 pounds of Wild Alaskan Salmon per family or Elder to provide food security for families and Elders in need and to ensure continued access to traditional, nutrient rich foods common in subsistence diets.
“Working within our Native communities, it became clear that the COVID-19 pandemic was impacting our access to Native subsistence foods. Connecting supportive donors to Alaska Natives in need has been months in the making. Our Native foods are a pillar of our identity. It is an incredible honor and opportunity to connect our Native people with the foods that sustain our health and heritage in such challenging times,” said Sam Schimmel, Organizer of Operation Fish Drop.
On March 25th and March 26th, ANHC will host a drive-up Fish Delivery event from 9 AM – 5 PM. Members of the community can drive through the ANHC parking lot to receive their allocation of frozen fish, all without stepping foot outside of their vehicle. Volunteers will assist in placing the frozen fish into the car, and all social distancing, masking, and proper sanitizing precautions will be taken to ensure the safety of the community.
“One strength of Alaska Native community is that we always come together and are at our best during a time of need,” said Emily Edenshaw, President & CEO of the Alaska Native Heritage Center. “Operation Fish Drop embodies the spirit of our community strength while at the same time getting salmon (aka soul food) out to community members.”
Advanced registration for the event was required and reached maximum capacity within 48 hours of its release. The Operation Fish Drop team hopes to host another fish distribution event in the future to meet the needs of the community at this time. Community members can fill out an interest form for future fish distribution events here.
Operation Fish Drop was made possible through the partnership of the Arctic Youth Network, The Wave Foundation, The Center For Native American Youth, Alaska Sustainable Fisheries Trust, Cook Inlet Tribal Council, South Central Foundation, Catch Together, Salamatof Native Association, Northline Seafoods, the Alaska Native Heritage Center, 10th and M Seafoods, Kenaitze Indian Tribe and others.