Growing Our Own

Helping Indigenous



Our mission is to cultivate healthy, safe, and prosperous communities by strengthening food, water, and economic systems for our native communities, empowering our youth, and promoting Native cultural knowledge.


Our vision is for a future where all our relations thrive in sustainable, economically viable, and environmentally responsible Native communities. 


43 percent of the Navajo (Diné) population are living below the poverty line, twice the rate for all of Arizona.

(1) Navajo Nation Economic Development


In 2016, unemployment was 42 percent and the median household income was $24,945 compared to $56,516 in the U.S. 

(2) Arizona DHS


33 percent of Navajos are diabetic or pre-diabetic compared to 24 percent of all American Indian/Alaskan Native populations. 

(3) Gordon, A and V. Oddo


75% of 45,000 acres developed for surface-irrigated farms are idle due to flooding, sedimentation, etc.

(4) Navajo Nation DWR

Our solution is to strengthen our food, water, and economic systems in Native communities within the Little Colorado River Watershed

TLE is working in the southwestern section of the Navajo Nation to develop, promote and engage in small organic market farm development. Partners include Indian Dispute Resolution Services, Dine College Land Grant Office, and Spirit Farms.

Tolani Lake Enterprises Inc. in conjunction with Diné Hózhó & Cooperative Catalysis of New Mexico is in the process of forming a Navajo owned co-operative non-profit for the benefit of Navajo agricultural, ranching, and craft producers. 

Our workshops center includes traditional and contemporary growing methods, food safety, food preservation and preparation, improving the quality of your sheep, agricultural business practices, and so much more.

Tolani Lake Enterprises (TLE) is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization incorporated in 2000 that is working in the southwestern section of the Navajo Nation to strengthen food, water, and economic security. Over the past 12 years, TLE evolved into one of our region’s leaders in strategic planning, partnership building, project and administrative management, and fundraising. We’ve utilized our expertise to build the capacity of multiple grassroots organizations that are now operating at full capacity. We also fiscally sponsor projects for local initiatives that meet our strategic priorities. We are currently focused on food sovereignty initiatives and have helped build a coalition of partners to address specific barriers to agricultural development on the Navajo Nation. Through our work, and the work of our partners, we have identified and started to address issues related to food sovereignty including working on Navajo Nation food policy, finding a balanced approach to food safety programs, access to water, and farm and ranch development. 

Join Us

Visit the Sihasin Garden, our 3-acre demonstration site that demonstrates methods to improve your soil, growing in a hoop-house and raised beds, season extender methods, seed starting, and drip irrigation.

Our Sihasin Garden Warriors & Leaders work with local youth and community members at senior centers, backyard gardens, school gardens to build up healthy soil, drip irrigation, plant/weed identification, bug/pest control, etc. 

Our partnerships with local and regional grassroots organizations build on a unified commitment to food sovereignty, protecting our water, land stewardship, our youth and elders, and sustaining our traditional values and language.

By joining our volunteer corps, you can be a part of positive change in our communities, learn valuable skills, experience what it takes to impact your friends and family in meaningful ways, and do something you are passionate about.

1. Navajo Nation Economic Development, Arizona Department of Health Services, Statistical Profile 2016 3. Gordon, A and V. Oddo. Addressing Child Hunger and Obesity in Indian Country: Report to Congress, 2012. Mathematica Policy Research 4. Navajo Nation Division of Water Resources, 1983: Watershed Development, Irrigation Rehabilitation and Conservation Needs in the Navajo Nation: Preliminary Report; Navajo Nation Departments of Water Resources and Agriculture, 2004 : Irrigation Rehabilitation (White paper); and Little Colorado Soil and Water Conservation District and Dine INC, 2014: Assessment of Navajo Farmer and Rancher Needs in 33 Chapters of the Navajo Nation