Some 35,000 Native Americans representing 70 aboriginal nations live in New York City. The AICH is active in their behalf in the areas of the arts, job training, substance-abuse counseling, health services and youth activities, but it also works to promote a broader understanding of American Indian history and culture. During the holiday season the gallery hosts the popular Indian Market crafts fair.
Performing arts groups present some 15 events a year, including plays, concerts, storytelling based on the ancient oral traditions of Native Americans and pow wows. Theatrical offerings draw an avid audience while furthering the careers of Indian actors, playwrights, composers and directors. The center provides rehearsal space and technical assistance for artists and produces the annual Native American Actors Showcase.
School groups are invited to tour the gallery. Teaching aids are available to help teachers plan lessons and curricula; subjects include Ojibwe People Speak Out, Native Americans of the 20th Century, and Legends from the Dakota, Ojibwe and Winnebago Tribes. Other available educational materials include a resource file and videotape rental library (by appointment). In addition, books covering such topics as history, treaties and social justice are available for purchase.