Actor Martin Sheen is currently at the 2013 Native Vision Sports and Life Skills camp taking place in Shiprock, New Mexico. Sheen is there to teach acting and participate in a collection of skits, under the rubric of "The Navajo News," in a session that begins at 6:30 pm on Monday.
Native Vision is run by the Johns Hopkins Center for American Indian Health, with cooperation from the NFL Players Association. Sheen got involved with the program through the Center's director, Dr. Mathu Santosham. The doctor's son, an actor who will appear in Bhopal: A Prayer for Rain, to be released later in 2013, will also be on hand at the camp in Shiprock.
Earlier this year, Sheen delivered the keynote address at the Native Vision gala. “As a nation, we’ve really forgotten about our Native-American population," he said in an address which can be seen in the video clip below. "Our citizens on the reservation have been totally neglected for so very long that we’re unaware of them.”
Shen's involvement with Native Vision represents the second time in recent memory that he has used his clout as an entertainer to advocate for a Native cause. He served as the narrator for the 2011 documentary Holy Man: The U.S.A. v. Douglas White, which tells the horrifying story of a Lakota medicine man wrongfully jailed for a sexual assault he did not commit.