On Eagles Wings Prepares and Encourages Young Native Leaders

By June 20, 2024

USA (MNN) – Many Native Americans experience significant culture shock when they leave their communities on reservations. Hutchcraft Ministries offers various programs through their On Eagles Wings ministry to empower students in their faith and everyday life.

The Leadership Center

One of the newest ministries through On Eagles Wings is a gap year program for young people looking to gain practical skills for life and deepen their faith before they go to college or work. This launchpad for students is called the Leadership Center.

(Image courtesy of Hutchcraft Ministries)

Seth Stevens the Student Life Coordinator with On Eagles Wings says that many kids lack adults in their lives who push them to be independent and learn practical skills for living off the reservation. That’s where The Leadership Center steps in.

“We teach them how to do an oil change, how to do better communication, how to handle conflict resolution, how to even express yourself in a healthy way and cope with things in a healthy way. We end hoping that they will take away ownership for their own lives, for their future, for their own faith, even their well-being physically. [We hope] that they would take ownership in all things – to not just blame other people or blame their past so much, but to take ownership. Saying ‘Hey, where I ended up is where I choose to be. And it’s all because of what has what God has done in my life.’”

The program has had just one graduating class so far, but Stevens says he has already seen these students do great things. One of the reasons he thinks the program has been such an early success is their partnership and learning from other gap year programs such as College of the Ozarks. However, he says that for many students the most impactful part of the program was that the campus felt like home.

“Here, majority of our staff are native. So when they end up in here, we have things we can relate on. So the transition from home to here, the homesickness is, you know, with our RAS to be native, it helps with that.”

Other Programs

In addition to the Leadership Center program, On Eagles Wings hosts a yearly conference called the Warrior Leadership Summit Native Youth Conference. This event brings together First Nations students from across the US and Canada, representing over 100 tribes and nations. Many students choose to follow Christ at that conference or leave with a deepened faith and desire for evangelism.

(Image courtesy of Hutchcraft Ministries)

Out of that conference, On Eagles Wings also finds students to join their Summer of Hope Reservation Outreach. Students travel to different Native communities and facilitate events that allow them to share their faith.

Through these and other programs, On Eagles Wings seeks to empower Native communities with Gospel-centered hope.

Get Involved

God is moving in Native America. Pray that He will continue to provide the skills, hope, and faith these young people need to follow Christ. Please also consider donating to help more young Native leaders here.


(Header image courtesy of Anil sharma on Pixabay)

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