Culture is Prevention


– [Sarah] The Training and Technical Assistance Culture is Prevention Webinar. In a few moments we will open the webinar in a good way but before we do that I have a few housekeeping items for you. Today’s webinar is being recorded and the recording with all
documents will be available on the Native Connections
website in the near future. The web address will be shared later in today’s presentation
for your convenience. We want to make sure this experience is as interactive as possible
so please feel free to use the chat box to communicate with the presenters and each other. Many of you have experience
working in Native communities and we encourage you
to share your knowledge and any knowledge that
you believe will help our brothers and sisters
throughout the community. At the end of this webinar there will be a question and answer session
to allow time for presenters to answer any questions
you may have for them. We will be happy to answer your
questions by chat or email. Just note our emails at the
end of this presentation. Again my name is Sarah Pearson and I am the Native Connections
Curriculum Developer. I’d like to introduce another feature to you to interact with us today. Along the top of the
screen please take a look at the three icons you’ll see a speaker, a phone, and a little
person raising their hand. You can use this feature of
the raising your hand person to raise your hand and
communicate with the presenters. Let’s try that out now. We want to communicate with the presenters and we want to welcome them
warmly so choose the applause, clapping your hands to
welcome them in warmly. You’re raising your hand, there we go. We have a few applause that’s great. You can ask presenters
to slow down or speak up and you can also raise your hand if you have a question or comment. If I see a hand raised give me a moment and I’ll try to engage
with you in the chat box or the speakers may call out
to you in person, thank you. So I want to turn this over
to our two fearless leaders Barbara Aragon and Hunter
Genia for a wonderful webinar on Culture is
Prevention, Barb and Hunter. – [Barbara] Thank You Sarah,
thanks for that warm welcome and I’m glad to see all of the folks that are signing on right now. This is Barbara Aragon I
am a Native Connections GTA or Grantee Technical Assistant. I’m calling in from
California and where I work not only with Native Connections
with Circles of Care. My tribes our Laguna Pueblo and Crow and I’m going to turn it over to my co-facilitator Hunter Genia. (speaking in foreign language) – [Hunter] Hello everybody. (speaking in foreign language) Saginaw, Swan Creek, Black River Bay, Chippewa, Manao, Grand River Bay (speaking in foreign language) Welcome everybody and let’s
have a great webinar today. – [Barbara] Okay I also want to present our Grantee Presenters,
the grantees presentation is always a real highlight of webinars and so we have three different grantees. One, the first one is Mark
Gokee who will be presenting. He’s a project assistant
with the Red Cliff Native Connections Project and I’ll read you a little bit about him. He is a member of the Red Cliff band of Lake Superior Chippewa. He was born in Milwaukee Wisconsin. And Mr. Gokee was fortunate
to visit his family on the Red Cliff reservation several times a year before moving there in 1991. While growing up he was
taught the Anishinaabe language by his father
and other family members. He’s also learned about tribal history, medicines, and ceremonies. It’s with these teachings
in mind that have led him to continue to learn and
give back to the community. His co-presenter is Lorna Gamble. She’s an also an enrolled tribal member of the Red Cliff Band of
Lake Superior Chippewa. In 1992 she graduated
from Northland College in Ashland, Wisconsin
with a BS in Psychology. In 1992 Miss Gamble
graduated from the University of Wisconsin Superior
with an MSE in Counseling. Lorna has worked for
the tribe for 12 years. She has quite a few positions
while working for the tribe and they have included the home visitor for the early headstart program. Also she has directed a number of programs including the Indian
Child Welfare Program. the Family Violence Prevention,
and she’s been the Interim Family and Human Services Administrator and CCS Quality Assurance Administrator. She is currently the Native
Connections Grant Manager and they will be among
our first presentations. Our other presenters include Tasha Norton who is Hupa, Uru, and Karuk from Northern California. Miss Norton was raised by her
grandma and great grandparents on the Hupa Valley Indian Reservation which is really a beautiful area. And at the age of 13 she worked as a Johnson O’Malley tutor where she worked with elementary students after school. Tasha attended college
in Oregon and Washington before moving to Sacramento
to finish her schooling and to pursue her passion which
is working with Native youth. In her current position as a
Youth Peer Support Specialist at the Sacramento Native
American Health Center she incorporates her Native
culture in everything she does. She not only teaches youth
about walking in two worlds, into the two worlds of Native
traditions and Western living but she really models it is her own life. Our fourth presenter is Shera Burg. Shera Burg works as a
Native Connections Project Evaluator and Technical Writer for the Kenaitze Indian
Tribe in Kenai, Alaska. She’s originally from Texas so she’s gone quite a distance from two big states and has lived in Alaska for five years. She has worked mainly in the
healthcare and legal fields throughout her professional years. Shera is currently getting
her master’s degree in social work, all right social workers. Okay we’re going to go ahead and start diving in there but I’m gonna turn it back over to Hunter for a introduction. – [Hunter] Thank you Barb. At this time we’d like to ask
my Nigi from Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, Mr. Mark Gokee to open us up in a good
way, thank you Mark. (speaking in foreign language) – [Mark] Basically there I just said just talking for us to
the spirits that they accept this little bit of
tobacco here that I’m holding. That I don’t know all that
much but give it a try and say thank you that we do good
things, that we travel along good roads with a good
heart as we proceed. And I was gonna sing a song it’s an old traditional song I learned, started learning when I first came up here and I was a little kid and
moved here permanently so I was gonna sing a couple
of push ups of that. (singing in foreign language) (speaking in foreign language) – [Hunter] From Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa community. We look forward to hearing your presentation just a little bit later. Gonna turn it back over to Barb. – [Barbara] Thank you
Mark that was wonderful. Okay we’re gonna look at the learning objectives for this webinar
and the first is that we’re going to have a discussion
about historical trauma as a factor in resiliency
and the impact on culture. We’re also going to increase
awareness of how Native connections grantees are
using cultural revitalization in their Strategic Action
Plans or their SAPs. Another objective is we’re
going to increase awareness of research on cultural and
evidence based activities. So the grantees are gonna not only share what they’re doing as
far as revitalization or continuation of culture
but they’re also gonna be talking about how that’s being measured. I appreciate that. Okay some of the key words
and I think many of you will be familiar with them
but we wanted to go over them so we have a common understanding is we’re going to talk
about historical trauma. And this is going to be,
many of you are familiar with Maria Yellow Horse
Braveheart and this is the definition is cumulative
psychological and emotional wounding across generations
including one’s own lifespan. So hunter will be talking about that. We’re also going to be
talking about cultural protective factors and
those are the variables that have a direct effect on behavior and how they are resilient,
they keep us focused on wellness and how we can
use them despite trauma both historical and across the lifespan. And then we’re going to talk
about evidence based practice. I know for many of you
with the Native Connections you’re requested to use
evidence based practice and that is the integration of
the best available research. They go through a process
to achieve the status of evidence based practice
but we want to also partner that with cultural based practice. and what the presentations are going to focus on is cultural best practices. And so we look forward to
achieving these objectives. And you can also do it because
you’ll have an opportunity to respond in the chat box
when we ask you for input. And also there will be a short survey, or a short survey short response that will be part of the interactive part. I’m gonna turn it over to Hunter Genia to talk about historical trauma. – [Hunter] Thank you Barb. One of the things I wanted
to share with grantees that are listening in today is when we talk about cultural revitalization it’s like why do we need to revitalize? And so we thought maybe just
giving a basic understanding of some of the federal policies,
just a quick snapshot some of the major ones
although this is not at all an inclusive list
over time since context. So when we take a look
at some of the things that have happened in Indian country the Indian Removal Act
of 1830 we know that some of the grantees that
I work with were removed from the Great Lakes area
out to Kansas and Oklahoma. We had some that went up
to Canada and others that were forced marched
across the southeastern part of The United States
west of the Mississippi. We also know that in 1883 the
Religious Crimes Code Act. Not a lot of people talked about this but this was the federal
law that outlawed, made it federally
unlawful for the practice of Native culture and tradition, ceremony and language and spirituality. And we talk about the Dawes Allotment Act, the breakup of families and communities and giving property to
individual head of households. That was also a factor in
having an impact on the cultural essence of Native
families and communities. And in 1924 the Snyder Act which overall allowed our people to have the opportunity to become a United States Citizen even though we’ve been here
for thousands of years. And in 1935 the Indian Reorganization Act which a lot of tribes who are trying to even get reaffirmed on to
the federal list of tribes have been impacted by this particular act. And in 1968 we even had to have our own Indian Civil Rights Act,
our own Bill of Rights given us protection because
of a lot of the treaty and historical violations
that still impact tribes and the welfare of communities today. And in 1975 the Indian Child Welfare Act which was as the result
of thousands of thousands of Native children being
removed from Native families and placed at non Native
families as a systematic course of action between the
1950’s and into the 70’s. And in 1978 finally reversal of the 1883 Religious Crimes Code
Act, the American Indian Freedom of Religion Act which
allowed us the opportunity to practice and live according
to our cultural traditions, ceremonies, language, and spirituality without the threat of being incarcerated. So those are just some
of the federal policies that have impacted us and still are impacting our tribal
communities today. Because of these federal
policies a lot of the work that all of our grantees,
our awesome grantees, some of the work that they are doing in their Strategic Action
Plan and in connection with the community readiness
model and assessments. We took a look at how
ready was your community in taking action towards
issues that are going on and concerns in your
community and families and where do we need to start with some of the basic Strategic
Action Plan strategies. And some of the things that we
are seeing in our communities today is higher rates of post
traumatic stress disorder. Matter of fact research has
found sharers that our people suffer PTSD at the same rate as Iraqi and Afghanistan veterans, combat veterans. We have higher rates
of depression, anxiety, and attachment disorders
a lot of that coming from the boarding school experience
in that period of time. We also see a lot of
OCD obsessive compulsive disorders and chemical addiction. Many of our grantees are
looking at strategies to overcome opiates and other
addictions and still including alcohol and marijuana
issues in our community. We’re trying to address suicide. We see a lot of suicide in Indian country. So how are communities addressing those? And we’ll get to hear some
of those stories today from our awesome grantees
that will be presenting. And that intentional
poverty, not just poverty but that intentional poverty that we see some of our tribal communities
still living in third world condition situations in their communities. And so how do we deal with giving them hope and build resilience? And education level achievement. We’re seeing the impact
of historical trauma on educational level achievement. And also the lateral violence
aggression and trauma. We have some tribes that
are even still practicing or starting to practice
that non traditional disenrollment things of
that that are going on in Indian country so these are some of the things that we’re seeing as impact of the result
of historical trauma. Thank you Barb. – [Barbara] Yes and now we’d
like to involve the audience because Hunter went over some
of the very common things that we hear about in Indian country. And when we’re talking
about historical trauma or also some of the trauma
across the lifespan. Now we want to hear
from you and so we have a short answer poll right if you can see some of them it looks like borders dividing the tribes so we can see that the borders have always been an
issue continue to be an issue. And sometimes it’s tribes in one area but we also have some tribes that are both that also go into Mexico and into Canada. So relocation, urbanization many of us are now living in urban
areas and some of that was by policy, some by a choice. Also we look at boarding
schools, per capita payments. For some tribes they were not allowed to return to their original homelands. and we talk about the Trail of Tears and there’ve been multiple
Trails of Tears for many tribes. For the Pequot and many other tribes too not being allowed to speak the language. Again boarding schools, land claims, the it being criminalized
to speak our language or practice culture, again border issues. Enrollment requirements
and also I also saw that disenrollment for many tribes that are disenrolling their tribal members and that has caused modern day trauma. We see quite a few of different policies that have impacted our
practices, some of them federal, some of them regional
but we know that these have created trauma for our communities. Okay so we can spend time
talking about the trauma but we really want to
again move to our grantees who are addressing that
trauma and they are doing healing practices and
they’re revitalizing culture. And with that we want to begin to move for them to share what they
are doing not only through their programs but also
on their reservations and how they’re integrated
into their SAPs. Hunter do you want to say anything before I move to the next? – [Hunter] Nope just thank you to all of the 29 individuals who responded to that. I think every time we
do an exercise like that I’m always learning something
new from different regions where the tribes are so very
awesome thank you for sharing. One of the things we want to talk about is when we’re doing this kind
of Native wellness work in Indian country in our communities we wanted to just take a minute to review the key principles of
trauma informed approach. and you can find this on
Samsha.gov, SAMSHA’s website. So when we’re talking about
doing this work in our tribal communities we want to make
sure we establish safety. What are those things that we need to do to make sure everyone
feels okay being here? How are we going to be with one another in our communities or when we
visit programs and services? We want to make sure that we establish trust and transparency. A lot of those federal
policies have created a lot of distrust and
so our tribal programs need to make sure that we’re establishing a trauma informed approach
in our programs and services. We want to make sure that we
advocate for peer support. Not just program personnel but also those community members that
can help be a part of that circle of care for that
individual or family. Want to make sure we
establish collaborations and mutuality so we talk
about Native Connections in the grant one of the
main goals of that grant is to establish those partnerships. Let’s collaborate, let’s
break down those silos. We want to make sure
we empower our people, our youth, and our elders and our parents. We want to make sure we
empower our programs. We want to make sure we give
them some voice and some choice and so you see a lot of the
efforts that are going on in Indian country today are
community based trauma informed approaches such as GONAs and GOANs. We want to make sure that we understand and that all of our
staff, all of our staff understand the culture historical and gender issues in
our tribal communities. When we signed on to be
an employee of that tribe we understand that we have a
commitment to understanding that particular tribes
culture, history, practices, et cetera so these are
things that are some of the key principles of that
trauma informed approach. – [Barbara] Thank you Hunter. And I think that is great and because we know they’re trauma
informed if you look at them they’re also culturally informed and so we want to turn it over to our grantees and please not only listen
to what they’re saying but see if you can also
identify some of the elements or principles of
trauma informed as they present. And our first grantee and
presenters are going to be from Red Cliff and I
introduced them previously and they’re going to be Lorna
Gamble and Mark Gokee Junior who opened us up with in a good way. So Lorna I’m gonna turn it over to you. – [Lorna] Alright
actually I’d like to like to start off with a little
history of the Red Cliff tribe and some of the historical
trauma that we’ve faced, Mark. – [Mark] Well thanks a lot. Well a lot of, we’re just where we are. And if you go way back
and start getting into the initial contact years you’re
we’re a big central hub of a lot of resources a lot
of economic activity. And with that came when we
had the especially the French came in and they ended
up being big players in especially the fur trade, timber, all kinds of industries here and it started moving us away from how we were kind of living,
that was it was more of an economic capitalist base
way of doing things. Started getting into money and also they started to proselytize the people here. And a part of that what ends
up happening is the people that tend to do real well in
that situation end up doing a lot of exploitive
things to make money. As far as conversion
goes that lends itself to traditional practices being looked on as something damnable or forbidden and really they talked about signing
that ticket to hell for you if you were just being yourself and continuing in your traditional ways. – [Lorna] So we’ve identified some of the effects of the trauma. We have a high drug problem
here, a lot of depression. We have a lot of dysfunction
within our family units. We also have a lack of self identity and shaming of our own cultural identity. And as we look at our
families and our community now we have people that are in
their 70’s and 80’s who are admitting to feeling
ashamed of who they are, ashamed of being Native American. And as we’re looking at historical trauma it’s a way that they were
raised to protect themselves and to protect their families, to survive. And so that that historical
trauma is passed down. And even though we may
not know that we have these behaviors we’re
still exhibiting them. And so as we’re talking about the Strategic Action Plans for
our year one when we did our RCRA, our Community Readiness Assessment our community climate
scored very low at a two. Our community knowledge
about the issue of suicide prevention and AODA or
alcohol and other drug abuse was a one, and our resources
related to the issue of suicide or drug abuse was a two. And one of the things that we
learned about our community is that we have a tremendous
amount of resources and we have a lot of
programs and a lot of grants and people helping but what our community doesn’t understand it or
they’re not comfortable with going to get these services
and so one of the things that we needed to do right away is to meet the community where they were at. Instead of expecting them to come to us and tell us what their problems were we need to just take a look at that where they are and what they’re doing and meet them where they’re
comfortable and that includes the cultural education as well. We had been trying to do a
lot in a short amount of time to try to get a language revitalization or culture revitalization
and that was putting a lot of pressure on our community and they actually were resistant. So one of the things that we did was we, we’re gonna switch the
slides here a little bit. No we’ll go with this one. One of the things that
we did was we had a group a project called the
New Hope Wellness Group and that was our new hope
supported housing unit was in collaboration with our AODA or alcohol and other drug abuse program here, our outpatient services and we worked with Native Connections to bring a weekly support group to these people. The target group were families
that were in recovery. And we provided traditional crafts, weekly language and
storytelling to the families. And at times we averaged
about 10 people per session and one of the things that
we started off with was doing bundles and so we taught them
about our sacred medicines and they each had their own little bag and up on the top you can
see a set of bags there. So they all made those by hand. And what that did was we
focused on the sacredness of our medicines as a form
of healing our wounds. We also made moccasins and
that we focused our lessons on patience and perseverance, respect, and a sense of accomplishment. And it also worked on their self esteem. We also made traditional
rattles out of turtle shell to focus on the
connections with who we are as Anishinaabe and that comes
with some turtle teachings that we teach in the winter time. We also did bead work and that taught us that nothing in life is perfect. And so that group still
continues to meet every week. Everyone kind of works at their own pace. And they have found a lot of pride in not just their work but in who they are. Another project that we
did was working with our alternative education class at
the Bay Field School District and we worked with the youth
that were considered at risk. They have behavior issues. They were at risk of
abusing drugs and alcohol. We met with them at our
Mishomis Wellness Center here every two weeks and again
that was a collaboration between our AODA outpatient facility here and the Native Connections
project and the Bay Field School. One of the projects that we
focused on was quillwork. And that again taught patience. They had a sense of pride
in their accomplishments. We worked on their sacred bundles and they also grew their own
traditional medicines, harvested and then filled their bags up
at the end of the school year. The lessons were focused
around the importance of carrying medicines
as a tool for strength rather than drugs or alcohol
to avoid using their voices. They taught patience with themselves and also to work together as a team. We used language and that
incorporated the lessons with the storytelling
throughout the winter. So when we’re talking about
trauma informed approach we tried to meet as many
of those as we could. We tried to establish a sense
of trust between the youth. They had a peer support network. We also work collaboratively
with other programs. And we focused on historical trauma and used a positive healthy approach to dealing with it through our culture. And I’d like to turn the
last one over to Mark. – [Mark] Alright and then
I’m gonna wrap it up here. We had the Ojibwe language, weekly Ojibwe Language
Table going on here. And basically the idea
behind it is to normalize and take away any kind of
intimidation factor there would be in our members and our
neighbors and our family getting together to learn our own language and become more in touch with
that and learn the lessons that are incorporated into
learning our language. It’s a living thing,
it’s a living language, it’s 80% verbs, it’s very descriptive and within those words
we find our lessons. For example just even the words (speaking in foreign language) It means, literally in translation English it’s a real thick forest. To us when we use that
it kind of means that he or she is going
through like a hard time. They’re having a tough go at it. But within that forest
it doesn’t mean that’s where it stops, that’s where it ends. That’s just kind of where you
are at that particular time. And that you can still
make it through that and you get to be a
reinforced just even buy the philosophy behind the
language and in all that there’s teachings and we
learn history through it. We haven’t just been doing
just word to word translations or composition but it’s part
of stories, part of songs. And all these things become
our helpers, our tools to combat a lot of the
issues that are affecting us. And hopefully by doing it
in this way we can take away some of the intimidation
that’s a real I don’t know. It’s not such as scholarly
pursuit but something that’s real accessible to
our friends and family. And as a way to get together
and learn these lessons and hopefully spread that
throughout the community. – [Lorna] Another thing I
wanted to just add to that is that we incorporated people
to teach the classes that are not considered to be
professional teachers. There are people every
day in our community and even if they know six words if they can teach those six words we are starting to normalize the use of that language so that they don’t feel that shame and to realize that gee our community
does know a lot of stuff. Our community does have a sense of pride. And so every week we pick
a different presenter within our community and
that seems to be going okay. So the last slide that we have is just what went well for us with
these projects the students were interested in learning
about their culture. There was a willingness to share stories of strengths within the group. We chose to say use a
strength based approach. We focused on the positive
even if negative things were brought up we helped them learn that they had a lot of strengths from getting through those situations. What could be improved? The structured activities
could be a challenge for youth especially with time restraints. And so we found that one project that an adult could probably finish really took about two weeks to a month to do. And so we need more planning
time to engage youth. It would have been helpful to build up a little bit more trust with them so that they would interact more. Right towards the end of the sessions they started to open up. And so those are just a
few of the things that we wanted to share with you
and if you have any questions feel free to let us know.
(speaking in foreign language) – [Barbara] Thank you Red Cliff. That was a great presentation. And we will have the names
and contact information of all the grantees on the final slide. And I want to turn it
over to our next grantee. And that is going to be Sacramento Native American Health Center and Tasha Norton. I introduced her earlier and she is a Youth Peer Support Specialists, one of two there at Sacramento. So Tasha I’m gonna turn it over to you. (speaking in foreign language) – [Tasha] I said hello in
all three of my languages. My name is Tasha Norton and I’m Hupa, Uru, and Karuk from Northern California. I am from the villages of
(speaking in foreign language) but I live in Sacramento. I am one of the Youth
Care support Specialists here at Sacramento and
we work directly with the Native youth living
in Sacramento County. Today I kind of want to talk about some culture revitalization such as
our coming of age ceremonies for our young girls, Gathering
of Native Americans GONA. We just completed one of our
youth GONAa and it was amazing. And also tying that both of
those into living in two worlds as a lot of them, we as
Native people have to do and finding that balance
for our Native youth. First I want to talk about this picture. This picture is one of our
bark skirts from back home. And a lot of California
tribes use bark skirts. This bark skirt is my little sisters and it was made out
maple bark and we really when we’re weaving the
maple bark we weave in all of the different
teachings, all of the different resources, all of the different
knowledge in that bark skirt and so when the young
woman wears this bark skirt that she has all this teachings. We really take that into,
I take that into the work I do today with our Native youth such as when we are at GONA this weekend when we were having the
hosting of the gathering of Native Americans we talked about the weaving of the bark skirt and all the different resources
when it comes to mastery, belonging, interdependence,
and generosity. And so we talked about this
bark skirt and the different shared some basket stories with that. So I really wanted to start off with this as my starting point of sharing their resources that generosity and how you have everything
in your basket that you need. This picture right here
is my little sister and her best friend and this was after her flower dance, her
coming of age ceremony. And in her coming of age ceremony she was taught all the
different traditional things but also she was taught the modern things. within her coming of age
ceremonies she was referred to as a (speaking in foreign
language) and she was at what we consider at one of her most highest and spiritual places. Everything that was taught to
her during her coming of age ceremony she was able to
carry on through life. She just graduated high school and all the different resources and everything that she learned during
her coming of age ceremony is helping her betterment herself by going to college, continue to play college, or continue playing basketball
on the college level. I really bring this up
because we used this teaching at the GONA, the Gathering
of Native Americans that we had this past weekend. One night we went to the Round House here and in California the
Round House is a really spiritual place for some
of the California tribes. And some of the girls they were unable to go into the Round House
because it was their moon time and they were on their period
they were menstruating. And so what we did some of
the older females of the group and I was a facilitator is
we pulled the girls aside and we talked about the importance of having the moon, having the period. And a lot of the girls growing up today they never really had that. It was always seen as a dirty thing. Oh you’re on your period
(mocking laughter) type of thing. And so we really empowered
them to reclaim the importance of their moon and reclaim the
importance of the young ladies and talk about how spiritual this is, how for the young ladies
that we have this medicine with us and for us to be able to cleanse ourselves like that is so important. so we really brought that
traditional side of the coming of age ceremony and incorporated it into our GONA, into the modern settings In which the young ladies were, we’re living in and so that’s bringing that balance of the both worlds using that culture as prevention, those culture protective factors. For the young men this slide is my nephew rowing one of our redwood canoes and my other nephew dancing in a ceremony. for our young men we always
teach them the respect of other people but
also their goals in life to take care of their
family to do that hunting, to respect the women. A lot of our young men and
as my nephew’s they grow up in a kind of in a rough
home and they’ve always seen kind of the more of the abusive side, that men are abusive, they’re
alcoholics and everything but we really want to change that mindset and for us part of one of the
ways to change that mindset is to incorporate them in culture is to incorporate them into
rowing their redwood canoe. At GONA again this past weekend
when the girls stepped aside because there are on their moons the men of the group really talked to them and talked to the young men
about the importance of a woman and their roles and so that respect of treating the woman right,
healthy relationship, having that male and female balance. With the redwood, with the
picture on the left side the redwood canoe each part
represents a body part. So there’s the heart,
there’s the lung, there’s the nose everything like that. And so we teach that young boy to respect ultimately your body
also so that comes into the play of the healthy
relationships, healthy sexuality, respecting the young woman and
we really incorporated that into the GONA, the Gathering
of Native Americans we had this past weekend. This picture is probably one of my favorite pictures but I’m a little biased. This picture is my mom
and my niece Olivia. And one of them our
mentalities for the youth or one of our themes for the
Youth Initiatives Department here at the Sacramento
Native American Health Center is from baby basket to welder. And the word welder was really deemed by Dean Hoagland
and it’s a well elder. So we are teachings go
from the baby baskets to a welder and incorporating the teaching from one generation to the next. for our Youth Ambassadors
Program here it’s our quote unquote our
board, our youth board for the Native Connections Grant. There’s for the ages of 12 to 22 and they named themselves
the Youth Ambassadors because they felt that they
were more than a board. They’re the ambassadors
of the Native community, of the Native children of this community. They wanted to have a mentor program in kind of like a little and
big, the littles and bigs. And that’s, they wanted
to everything that they were learning they wanted
to teach to the littles so that sustainability is
there so some of our youth ambassadors that
are going off to college they’ve trained these littles up in them to come over and take
take their role or step in. We call them the Little Snahcs because the Sacramento Native
American Health Center abbreviation SNAHCs for short and they it was really amazing
to see at this past GONA that some of the Little Snahcs or our junior ambassadors really
stepping up and taking that role into saying
the different blessings, saying the different prayers, and also taking that healthy risk at GONA. Also that comes into
the suicide prevention in the protective factors
having that mentor, having that mentor to lead a good life. This picture is our ceremonial dresses and I really I use this picture to talk about the walking in two worlds as you can see the dresses are walking
and finding that balance in both worlds whether our
traditional Native world and also the Western world
and bringing them together in fusing those protective factors for our youth, for our communities. We really did this at
GONA this past weekend in the (speaking in foreign language) We spent one night at the
Roundhouses and we fused the GONA teachings, the GONA
themes such as belonging, mastery, interdependence, generosity and brought that together in a
traditional cultural sense. I always like to quote one of
my mentors Virginia Hedrick and she talks about suicide, drugs, and alcohol they weren’t in our worldview back in the day in traditional times. That we need the Western
medicine to help balance that but if we get too far
in our Western medicine then we get too far in losing our ways. And so this is when we have
to fuse the best practices. We have to fuse the
evidence based coming in. So at the GONA this past weekend we had the best practice GONA Cross Site Study. Oh, this is a little map,
sorry a little out of order. Hupa is at the very most
northern part of California and Sacramento’s in the middle. This is all the pre-contact
tribes in California. If you have any questions about
this definitely let me know but I want to move on to
the GONA Cross Site Study. So we had some evaluators
come in and evaluate the fidelity of GONA and
how these protective factors and using GONA as a prove
evidence based practice. So that’s fusing the traditional
and the modern setting into a best best practice thing. So if there’s any questions there anything definitely let me know and
I’ll be more than happy to answer them thank you for your time. – [Barbara] Thank you Tasha
and I just want to say if you look at that third
bullet one of the things that’s being measured
in the Cross Site Study is the hope, and this is focused on youth, hope and also cultural connectedness. And so there are a number of urban tribes in California are a
part of that Cross Site Study. But I’d like to move on
to our third presenter. And this is going to be Shera Burg. She works at the Native Connections as the Native Connections
project evaluator and Technical Writer for the Kenaitze Indian tribe in Kenai, Alaska. So I’m going to turn it over to you Shera. Shera are you on mute? And as we’re waiting keep in
mind there’s a resources list. There is also the cultural PowerPoint. So you have that PowerPoint there. And then there’s also the trauma
informed, the six pillars. So there was the visual that Hunter went over, the six pillars of trauma informed. And so you have a copy of that in your resources that you can download. Now I think we may have
lost, which is not uncommon when you’re calling in
from Alaska is that Shera, Shera okay I just saw her
little phone pop up again so she must be calling
in and I look forward to hearing her presentation also. – [Shera] Hi Barb are you there? – [Barbara] Yes yes great– – [Shera] You can hear me, great. – [Barbara] Yes I can. Okay go ahead take it away Shera. – [Shera] Okay my name is
Shera Burg as Barb said and I work for the Kenaitze Indian tribe. Our Native Connections Grant Program is called Yinihugheltani which means one spirit, respect for
yourself in Dena’ina. It’s one of our tribal
values here at Kenaitze. I’m the Project Evaluator
and Technical Writer and then I work with our Project
Coordinator Audrey Gifford and our Project Director Julie Dravis who’s also our Director
of Behavioral Health. We’re kind of housed within our behavioral health program here with Kenaitze. We’re located about 150 miles Southwest of Anchorage on the Kenai Peninsula and we kind of really want to focus on culture as prevention as this webinar talks about. When we initially started
our program we looked at risk and protective factors
of people in our community. We did our community readiness assessment. We received a score four overall and then our community
climate and leadership scores were about a three so we knew that those were the ones we kind of wanted to target. So when we looked at risk
and protective factors we knew that we wanted to make sure our Strategic Action Plan represented building those protective factors such as their cultural identity
for Native youth and their concept of self esteem and just building those out, getting
them out of the house was also a focus and
getting them in nature because Alaska is so beautiful
particularly in the summer. And there are so many great
things you can do here and a lot of kids stay indoors. We really wanted to work with that and build those protective factors up. So as far as culture as
prevention it’s important to realize that sustaining
culture in communities has been identified multiple
studies of American Indian and Alaska Native
populations as preventive. And when your family’s
been become disconnected from their culture there’s a sense of loss and that’s felt across generations, which is also called
intergenerational trauma. That can be due to historical trauma such as Alaska Natives have experienced. it’s important to reconnect
the youth that we work with and their families to their
culture and communities to give them a sense of
belonging and purpose. And if you’re working with Alaska Natives, Native American youth
you should make sure that they’re learning about their culture and of the community they’re working in so that our programs can be
more culturally confident. So that was very much a focus that we had. So some of the activities that we did we’re currently in our
year two of the grant and I wanted to kind of go over, majority of these are year one activities what we kind of started with. our first event was our Nen She Ela event which means you and me, that was an event that we held during some
of the long winter months. It happened in February
but there’s a lot of long winter months before that where people are kind of kept indoors. We wanted to provide
kind of a get together, just a very casual get together where people could get out of their house. And so we had a fire pit
lit, we had drumming, we had food, and people just got together, we sang songs, it was
it was a really special. We had it the year, we
had it the first year and we had it recently this
year as well in our year two. And then we also invited
a troupe to perform the winter bear play it’s a
group that performs this play for free throughout
Alaska and the lower 48. I believe they’re a theater
group out of Juneau. And it’s based on at the Athabascan culture and the Dena’ina people. The Kenaitze are Athabascan so we thought it was really great and it focused on a youth and an elder
and the youth I believe is having thoughts of
suicide and the elder kind of helps the youth along. And then we also perform,
go to the schools and do talking circles which I’m gonna talk about a little more later. We do a hiking club every Friday
so we go on various trails in the summer and take the kids hiking. And what’s great about that and one of the protective factors is
establishing mentorships and peer support relationships and so we were able to do that
through our hiking club. We have older kids come and younger kids and the older kids kind of
help guide the younger kids. Our project coordinator Audra Gifford is really great about keeping
that relationship intact and really helping them along. And then we’ve tried to focus
on our two spirit population so we recently had the first
March that Kenaitze has had. Two spirit are the LGBTQ youth community. And then we also had
one last year as well. That one was a little
smaller it wasn’t a march. It was just kind of a get together. Just quickly some of the
other events that we do. We utilize our tribal
net at our tribal fishery to pull the net in so we
have a fish the net class where youth can help pull the
nets in and clean the fish. And then we also had one of
our elders you can see her on the left showing youth how to cut the salmon and
brine them and hang them in the smokehouse for
a smoking salmon class. We do culture camps
throughout the year in fact my coworker’s taking our youth
out on a camp right now to Denali so it’s really exciting. We’ve been doing those all year. And we’ve had some really
great opportunities. We also taken them grouse hunting and picking morel mushrooms. So what I want to talk to
you now is about some of the talking circles that we do in the schools. So our school district
has a program called Upstream Academy, it’s a title six program that they’ve established for Native youth and they had initially
had it during the summer. And it was a week long
camp and they offered and it was just for Native
youth in the area and then they gave them just different
opportunities and activities. I believe a couple of camps
they were able to talk to someone who showed them how to use drones and then the police, I
believe the Police Chief came in and gave them a talk about the ways that works with
the police department. And being a police officer
and what that’s like and then different people through
the community came and talked to them that
week, we were one of them. And we talked to them about
how to do a talking circle which is something that
people in Alaska Native and Native American culture do and it focuses on shared values. And it involves acting from those values in creating positive connections with each other and their community. So we teamed up with
with our circle program, the Ts’ilq’u Circle Program and we provide talking circles for one
day during that week. And we’ve done about three
or four of them so far. I think we have one scheduled
up coming in the fall. And the talking circle topics
have included bullying, identifying three important
people in students lives, and how to ask for help with mental health related issues and it’s
really been popular. We also go out in the schools. We did last year go out in
the schools every Tuesday for about a 20 minute
free period they have and just talk to the kids
about mental health issues. We usually take a
clinician for that as well. Some of the guidelines of the circle and I’ll have a reference at
the end of my presentation that kind of gives you a
book that’s really great to help you learn more
about talking circles. It’s kind of what they use
here for our circle program. You want to make sure you
honor the talking piece. So you sit in a circle and you
usually have a talking piece. It can be an eagle
feather, it can be a piece of driftwood that you’ve collected, something that’s meaningful. And whoever has the talking
piece is the one who speaks. So you want to make sure
you speak from the heart. You speak about the important
things that need to be heard and you use honesty,
courage, and humility. No one interrupts the person
with the talking piece. You want to speak in a good
way when you’re speaking. You choose your words with care for others and you don’t attack or manipulate. You want to be brief and
leave time for others and you want to make sure
you listen in a good way. You listen to learn, to understand and give respectful interested attention. You want to try to see things through the speaker’s eyes even if you disagree. The most important thing
is to remain in the circle. Commit to the circle until
everyone agrees to stop. And even if it becomes tense or difficult you want to still play your part. And then what is said in the
circle stays in the circle. You want to make sure you’re trustworthy. The stories and words of others are not shared or gossiped about. So I think those are
great tools and lessons to teach the kids within the circle. And they really seem to appreciate it and we try to do surveys
after the circles. And our feedback, with kids sometimes it’s hard to tell when they’re
engaged and interested. And a lot of times we’re sitting there and they’re not really
talking and they’re just passing the talking piece
and not really contributing and because we don’t make them talk. They’re perfectly free to
pass the talking piece. Afterwards when we get
the surveys we realize we really did make a difference. The ones who spoke up,
sometimes they would delve deep and when we get our service back they said we want to talk about deeper subjects. So when you use the circle you can use it to talk about topics. You can also use it to make
decisions and have plans that are informed, creative, universal, effective, developmental, and sustainable. We also just on another note had a GOAN which is the Gathering of Alaskan Natives. And that was developed from
the GONA, the Gathering of Native Americans and
then adapted for Alaska. And I just want to say that
was a really great experience. Our Native Connections coordinator Gary Newman came down
and led it, and Valerie. And we were so grateful
for that experience that brought two tribes
of Dena’ina people, the Kenaitze and
Holikachuk tribe together. And we had people from
all over Alaska attending. So that was another cultural thing we were able to provide for our community. And I’m really grateful
for you listening to me. Here are some of the references. The second one from the top is the book that I was telling you about. And I really appreciate you listening and just let me know if
you have any questions about our tribe or what we do, thank you. – [Barbara] Thank you Shera. And we’re going to, I know
we’re a little bit over but we’re going to open it up
for any questions or comments. – [Hunter] Awesome thank
you Barb and thank you to all the grantees that presented
today, totally awesome. Filling up my spirit cup
listening to all the culture and activities that you’re
doing in your communities. Just really really grateful
for all that you shared and we have a lot of grantees that could have helped with this presentation and so we’re not forgetting about you. And yes Jody you have
a question about GONA. Yes you can email me absolutely. Also one of the things
that I’ve been seeing in Indian country too is
that some of the nearby tribes are doing collaborative
GONA’s with their youth and everything so that’s
really awesome to see. I believe Red Cliffs and Bad River just had a youth GONA together. And so you can stretch
beyond your own tribal community there and do some
collaborative work that way. If you want to type in your
questions in the chat box at the bottom feel free
to do that at this time. That could be for any of the grantees. – [Barbara] I see a comment from Kathleen that it was really a good webinar so we can give the folks grantees an applause while some folks are typing in questions. I see Crystal is typing it in. – [Hunter] Awesome. – [Barbara] Great we
have multiple attendees. Okay and someone asked for my email and so at the last slide
when we’re finished here and I think I’ll go
back to that we will be, we will have the slides that are available and all of our contact
information is on those slides. – [Hunter] One of the things
I was thinking about Barb is when Red Cliff was
doing their presentation how we have some of the
Great Lakes tribes that were removed out west under the Indian Removal Act to Kansas and Oklahoma. Those grantees you guys can
get in touch with one another and share information
as some of those tribes in Oklahoma and Kansas
are Anishinaabe tribes and it’s a great opportunity to reconnect. Chanel we agree, these
grantees did an amazing job, amazing and it makes our
heart feel really good. Really good to see what’s happening in reversing the impact,
reversing the harm and the impact from historical trauma and getting to our historical resilience. And really good to see. And the cultural
connection scale and hope. Barb you want to take that? – [Barbara] Yes we can
get that sent to you. And I know that it is an
effort by Jamie Bargis who has been working with
the maybe four or five different grantees in California. I know all of the findings
are, it is an ongoing process. But we can reach out to them but the Hope Hearth Index Survey
should be available online. But we can make it
available to folks also. – [Hunter] Also from Virna is asking about Sarah’s presentation if it’s
in a downloadable PowerPoint. Sarah if you have that if
you could send that to your GTA we could go ahead and
forward that to Virna. Or if you want to put your
contact information Sarah, Shera in the chat box she
can get ahold of you directly as well if you’re okay with that. – [Barbara] Is that Sarah or Shera PowerPoints that you need? – [Sarah] I think she meant Shera. – [Shera] Okay what did you need me to do? – [Barbara] There was a
request for your PowerPoint. There was some confusion
whether if they were asking for Shera’s which we
think it is, or Sarah’s. And Sarah covered the disclaimer and the introductions at the beginning. – [Shera] Okay. Well I can forward that if you need me to. – [Barbara] Yes we can make
sure everyone gets one. – [Shera] Okay. – [Hunter] Looks like that’s, looks like we’re good on questions Barb. – [Barbara] Great then let’s go ahead and send it over to
Sarah but thank you all. Thank you all for being
part of the webinar and you will be receiving a
notice about the recording. It’ll be available to you. If you don’t get it right away reach out to your GTA
and we’ll send it to you. So Sarah. – [Sarah] Thank you Barb. Thank you to all our
presenters and our panelists. We’ve heard a lot of excellent examples and information on culture as prevention. And just a reminder the
PowerPoint for this presentation is in the resources to the bottom right hand corner of the screen. So thank you for your questions
and contact information for.




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