The International Council of 13 Indigenous Grandmothers is an international alliance of indigenous female elders that focuses on issues such as the environment, internationalism, and human rights. The group met for the first time in October 2004 at the Dalai Lama's Menla Retreat Center on Panther Mountain in Phoenicia, New York, during which time they declared themselves a council.
The council meets every six months, visiting each other's homelands. Their goals are to "build our relations and learn about each other's cultures". During these meetings the grandmothers wear traditional dress and hold a seven-day prayer vigil. The 2007 meeting in the Black Hills of South Dakota brought together 250 participants from the United States, South America, Europe, Asia and Oceania.
In 2006 Carol Schaefer's book Grandmothers Counsel the World: Women Elders Offer Their Vision for Our Planet was published by Trumpeter Books, an imprint of Shambhala Publications. In 2009 it released a Kindle edition. A Spanish edition was published in 2008.
In 2007 the Center for Sacred Studies, the parent organization of the Grandmother's Council, produced a documentary titled For the Next 7 Generations: The Grandmothers Speak. Directed by Carole Hart, it documented the Grandmothers as they met and traveled around the world.
Fran Markover's poem about the group, The Grandmothers, is based on a quote by Bernadette Rebienot,and won first place in the 2008 Ithaca College magazine arts and literature contest:
In 2011 Rita Pitka Blumenstein from Alaska and Mona Polacca from Arizona started a 22-city "Timeless Message Tour" speaking about the group and showing "For the Next 7 Generations".
They have received significant additional attention in academia. Suzanne Bouclin described them as "an alliance of 13 women elders from across the globe that was organized to uphold indigenous practices and ceremonies and affirm the right to use plant medicines free of legal restriction."
^Polacca, Mona (2011). "Realizing our Roots and the Power of Interconnectedness," in Tyson Miller, Dream of a Nation: Inspiring Ideas for a Better America. SEE Innovation, pp. 399–400. ISBN 0615482260.