Potlatch Fund Logo Meaning
The circle symbolizes the circle of life, which is regarded as sacred by many Native cultures. It is believed that the power of the world works in circles. The seasons, the earth, the sun, the stars, and life itself, from birth to birth.
The outer band represents the cedar tree. This tree and its bark provided longhouses for living quarters, cedar canoes for transportation, cedar hats and skirts for clothing, and baskets for gathering. It was and still is central to the very existence of many Northwest Tribes.
The inner circle represents Mother Earth, which provides us with everything to survive. If we take care of her, she takes care of us.
The shieldlike inner shape symbolizes the copper that was given in potlatches. The highly valued copper was the most important symbol of wealth, power, status, and prestige for Northwest Coastal Tribes. The object was made of beaten copper, and sometimes engraved.
The four colors within the copper represent all of humanity. From the four directions we have the colors and all nationalities. The colors represent partnerships among nonprofits, Tribes, corporate giving programs, individual donors, Native nonprofit organizations, and grassroots Native communities. The overall copper shield represents Potlatch Fund as a bridge for wealth and giving between the philanthropic world and Native/Tribal communities.