Category Archives: Education

Some Hospitals Finally Include Native Medicine!

“The largest public hospital in Osorno [Chile] is finding new ways to incorporate Indigenous health care practices, such as having a machi help with delivery.” G. Dell’orto, ICT, August 19, 2022

Ana Maria Aucapan, left, a Mapuche machi, or spiritual guide, and Ingrid Naipallan, second left, perform Indigenous rites with a percussion instrument called a kultrun as Angela Quintana Aucapan begins her labor accompanied by her partner Cristian Fernandez Ancapan at the San Jose de Osorno Base Hospital in Osorno, Chile, Friday, Aug. 19, 2022. (AP Photo/Luis Hidalgo)

Excerpt:New ways to incorporate Indigenous medicine, By Giovanna Dell’orto,Associated Press, ICT, August 29, 2022

“In labor with her first child last month, Lucia Hernández Rumian danced around her hospital room while her husband played the kultrun, a ritual drum.

She turned down pain medication from the hospital’s staff to get massages and oil rubdowns instead from her cultural liaison, who had ceremonially purified the space according to Mapuche customs.’It became my own space,’ Hernández said.

The largest public hospital in the southern Chilean city of Osorno is finding new ways to incorporate these and other Indigenous health care practices. There’s a special delivery room with Native images on the walls and bed, forms for doctors to approve herbal treatments from trusted traditional healers, and protocols for ‘good dying’ mindful of spiritual beliefs…But they also restore a crucial spiritual component to health care, according to health professionals and patients at Hospital Base San José de Osorno.

Mapuche people account for one-third of Osorno’s inhabitants and eight of 10 in the adjacent province of San Juan de la Costa

‘It must be a guarantee – we take charge of the physical part, but without transgressing on the spiritual dimension,’ said Cristina Muñoz, the certified nurse-midwife who launched new delivery protocols that Indigenous pregnant women can customize and are believed to be the first in the country…To join both kinds of medicine is not easy. Many Indigenous people perceive public hospitals as yet another state institution that discriminates against their beliefs…But doctors and traditional healers say they can complement one another’s work by realizing that every expert only knows a fraction of what’s possible, especially when battling new diseases like COVID-19.”

  QUEEN ELIZABETH II HAS WALKED ON… SEPTEMBER 8, 2022

“Queen Elizabeth II, the UK’s longest-serving monarch, has died at Balmoral aged 96, after reigning for 70 years.

She died peacefully on Thursday afternoon at her Scottish estate, where she had spent much of the summer.

The Queen came to the throne in 1952 and witnessed enormous social change.

Her son King Charles III said the death of his beloved mother was a “moment of great sadness” for him and his family and that her loss would be “deeply felt” around the world.

He said: “We mourn profoundly the passing of a cherished sovereign and a much-loved mother.”  BBC

(April 21, 1926 – September 8, 2022)

A Native Cafe Helps the Native Chefs Fight Addiction

Café Gozhóó in Arizona uses the kitchen to teach therapeutic skills to those recovering from substance abuse.” C. Nowell, The Guardian, July 13, 2022

Chef Nephi Craig uses notes in the kitchen to help his staff build their skills and work as a team. Photograph: Ash Ponders/The Guardian

Excerpt: The Indigenous cafe using native cuisine to help its chefs fight addiction. By Cecilia Nowell with photographs by Ash Ponders, The Guardian, July 13, 2022

“Driving along State Route 73 in eastern Arizona, it’s wide open skies and a red rock landscape, dotted with ponderosa pines, juniper bushes, yucca and prickly poppies. Just outside the White Mountain Apache town of Whiteriver, the blue roof of a gas station appears.

David Williams, a chef at Café Gozhóó in Whiteriver, Arizona, works during the lunch rush. The cafe teaches its chefs skills to overcome addiction and to create traditional Indigenous cuisine. Photograph: Ash Ponders/The Guardian

Only, it’s not a gas station anymore. The sign that once listed gas prices now welcomes visitors to Café Gozhóó, a new restaurant celebrating Western Apache cuisine. Inside, executive chef Nephi Craig – who

is White Mountain Apache and Diné, the Navajo word for the Navajo people – slices corn off freshly roasted cobs to make Apache cornbread, a three sisters salad and soup stock…But Café Gozhóó, which opened last October, isn’t just a restaurant. It’s also a vocational training program at the Rainbow Treatment Center, an addiction treatment program operated by the White Mountain Apache tribe since 1976.

Chef Crystal Wahpepah on the power of Indigenous cuisine- ‘Native foods are overlooked’

Craig, who is 10 years sober, is the center’s nutritional recovery program coordinator, and uses the kitchen to teach therapeutic skills – connecting with ancestral foods, stress management, and teamwork – to people recovering from substance abuse… Café Gozhóó is also filling a critical gap in access to care.

Many mainstream recovery programs are located far from Native American communities, and they often lack counselors trained in culturally competent care.

In his own journey to sobriety, Craig said, ‘I would encounter white counselors that would tell me, ‘You’re predisposed to become an alcoholic as a Native.’ But as he got deeper into his own study of recovery he realized, ‘It’s therapy’s dismissal of our legacy of historical trauma.’

The dishes at Café Gozhóó ‘allow people to build a relationship with food’, said chef Nephi Craig. Photograph: Ash Ponders/The Guardian

‘We’re not too far away from that time in history where so many of our food traditions, parenting traditions, ceremonies, agricultural traditions had to be abandoned and almost lost because of so much conflict in the American south-west,’ Craig said.

Café Gozhóó’s mission isn’t only about supporting recovery from substance abuse, but recovery from historical trauma.”

First Friday in June: Pride Night at the Heard

“We’re kicking off Pride Month at the Heard Museum with our first ever Native Drag Show, hosted by the Indigenous Fire Queen of Phoenix, Pyraddiction. Joining her will be Miss New Mexico Pride 2022, Tomahawk Martini; Mx Titos Pride 2022, Te D. DeMornay; K.Yasss Savage; Ritavon DeMornay; and Felix.

Enjoy free admission to the museum from 4 to 9 p.m., and then join us in our Steele Auditorium for the entertainment beginning at 6 p.m.. Prior to the Drag Show, we will be featuring Native LGBTQ poets reading their works. The Queens will take the runway around 7 p.m. Beverages and bites will be available in the Cantina, and you can browse Books & More for souvenirs. Don’t miss what is sure to be a memorable night at the Heard Museum!”

TIME: 4:00 pm – 9:00 pm

LOCATION: Heard Museum Campus 2301 North Central Avenue Phoenix, AZ 85004

Main: 602.252.8840

FOR INFORMATION VISIT HEARD MUSEUM

“Boozhoo! Ojibwe-Speaking Puppets Hit the Airwaves”

Michael Lyons, Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe, is a writer, illustrator and puppeteer who has taken the Ojibwe language to community radio and YouTube with his puppets, Nanaboozhoo, right, and Natasha. (Photo courtesy of Michael Lyons)

 

“Puppeteer Michael Lyons teaches language and culture mixed with comedy….They also take phone calls from ‘celebrities’ like Keanu Reeves, Anthony Fauci and Sylvester Stallone!” Dan Ninham, ICT, December 13, 2021

Excerpt: “Heidi Holton remembers the day Ojibwe puppeteer Michael Lyons called in to the radio station where she worked.  She’d been following his puppets, Nanaboozhoo and Natasha, on YouTube, and commenting about their use of the Ojibwe language and culture.

“He said, ‘How about ‘Boozhoo Nanaboozhoo’ on the radio?’” she recalls. She stopped a moment to think. “Hmm. Puppets on the radio? That might just work!”

And it has. A five-minute radio show, ‘The Boozhoo Nanaboozhoo Podcast,’ is now featured regularly on the morning show at KAXE/KBXE community radio in Bemidji, Minnesota, where Holton is news and public affairs director.  It’s one of a growing number of platforms for Lyons and his puppets to reach new audiences…They also take phone calls from ‘celebrities’ like Keanu Reeves, Anthony Fauci and Sylvester Stallone.”

Lyons, a citizen of the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe, has written and illustrated a number of children’s books, comic strips and comic books, and a coloring book in the Ojibwe language.

“Writer, illustrator and puppeteer Michael Lyons, Ojibwe, wrote his first children’s book, “Little Cutie: A Teddy Bear’s Vision Question,” about a ragged teddy bear searching for its identity. (Illustration courtesy of Michael Lyons)

He also has a podcast on YouTube that airs daily at 8 a.m. central time that goes  beyond teaching the Ojibwe language, delving into a range of issues…‘I always wanted to be either a rock star or a cartoonist as a kid and a grown-up, and didn’t really think anything of puppets until this show,’ he said. ‘Once I started doing the voices for the characters, I reached way back in my experience in high school speech and theater programs at Laporte High School.’

Writer, illustrator and puppeteer Michael Lyons, Ojibwe, has written a number of children’s books and comics teaching the Ojibwe language. The 2013 book, “Dog and Ma’iingan,” teaches readers how to count in Ojibwe and introduces words for certain animals. (Illustration courtesy of Michael Lyons)

“Boozhoo Nanaboozhoo’ is clean, family-friendly comedy, but it is not a spin-off of ‘Sesame Street’ in any way,” Lyons said. “We don’t swear or talk about sex in a bad way during the hour-long, live-streaming show, and we will teach a few phrases, but along the way, Nanaboozhoo and Natasha discuss anything.”

HAPPY HOLIDAYS! STAY SAFE! TALKING-FEATHER STAFF

Climate Change Hits Native Americans Harder than other Americans

“Many Native people were forced into the most undesirable areas of America, first by white settlers, then by the government. Now, parts of that marginal land are becoming uninhabitable.” C. Flavelle, The New York Times, June 27, 2021

Chefornak’s preschool sits on stilts in thawing permafrost. At high tide, water reaches the building, which needs to be moved to safer land.Credit…Ash Adams for The New York Times

Excerpt:Dispossessed, Again: Climate Change Hits Native Americans Especially Hard, By Christopher Flavelle, The New York Times, June 27, 2021

“In Chefornak, a Yu’pik village near the western coast of Alaska, the water is getting closer. The thick ground, once frozen solid, is thawing. The village preschool, its blue paint peeling, sits precariously on wooden stilts in spongy marsh between a river and a creek. Storms are growing stronger. At high tide these days, water rises under the building, sometimes keeping out the children, ages 3 to 5. The shifting ground has warped the floor, making it hard to close the doors. Mold grows.

‘I love our building,’ said Eliza Tunuchuk, one of the teachers. ‘At the same time, I want to move.’ The village, where the median income is about $11,000 a year, sought help from the federal government to build a new school on dry land — one of dozens of buildings in Chefornak that must be relocated. But agency after agency offered variations on the same response: no.

From Alaska to Florida, Native Americans are facing severe climate challenges, the newest threat in a history marked by centuries of distress and dislocation. While other communities struggle on a warming planet, Native tribes are experiencing an environmental peril exacerbated by policies — first imposed by white settlers and later the United States government — that forced them onto the country’s least desirable lands.

A home that collapsed into the eroding coast. Credit- Ash Adams NYT

And now, climate change is quickly making that marginal land uninhabitable. And now, climate change is quickly making that marginal land uninhabitable. The first Americans face the loss of home once again.

A totem pole in Taholah, Wash., that was carved to commemorate the 2013 Tribal Canoe Journey, an annual event for Pacific Northwest tribes.Credit…Josué Rivas for The New York Times

In the Pacific Northwest, coastal erosion and storms are eating away at tribal land, forcing native communities to try to move inland. In the Southwest, severe drought means Navajo Nation is running out of drinking water… Many tribes have been working to meet the challenges posed by the changing climate. And they have expressed hope that their concerns would be addressed by President Biden, who has committed to repairing the relationship with tribal nations…FEMA said it is committed to improving tribal access to its programs.

Taholah is exposed to storms and flooding but the tribe has struggled to get enough federal help to relocate.Credit…Josué Rivas for The New York Times

Chefornak’s efforts to relocate its preschool illustrate the current difficulties of dealing with the federal government.

While FEMA offers grants to cope with climate hazards, replacing the school wasn’t an eligible expense, according to Max Neale, a senior program manager at the Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium, who helped Chefornak search for federal aid.

Damian Cabman, a member of the Navajo tribe, filled buckets of water to take home at the Bataan water loading station in Gallup, N.M. Kalen Goodluck:NYT

Twice a week, Vivienne Beyal climbs into her GMC Sierra in Window Rock, a northern Arizona town that is the capital of Navajo Nation, and drives 45 minutes across the border into New Mexico. When she reaches the outskirts of Gallup, she joins something most Americans have never seen: a line for water… The facility, which is run by the city of Gallup, works like an air pump at a gas station: Each quarter fed into the coin slot buys 17 gallons of water. Most of the people in line with Ms. Beyal are also Navajo residents, crossing into New Mexico for drinking water…But unlike nearby communities like Gallup and Flagstaff, Navajo Nation lacks an adequate municipal water supply. About one-third of the tribe lives without running water…The drought is also changing the landscape. Reptiles and other animals are disappearing with the water, migrating to higher ground. And as vegetation dies, cattle and sheep have less to eat. Sand dunes once anchored by the plants become unmoored — cutting off roads, smothering junipers and even threatening to bury houses…As a presidential candidate last year, Mr. Biden highlighted the connection between global warming and Native Americans, saying that climate change poses a particular threat to Indigenous people…[President Biden] appointed Deb Haaland, the first Indigenous cabinet secretary, to run the Interior Department…Ms. Haaland’s role as interior secretary gives her vast authority over tribal nations. But the department declined to talk about plans to protect tribal nations from climate change…Instead, her agency provided a list of programs that already exist, including grants that started during the Obama administration… In Northern California, wildfires threaten burial sites and other sacred places. In Alaska, rising temperatures make it harder to engage in traditions like subsistence hunting and fishing.”

 

Native Tribe Prioritizes Covid-19 Vaccines for those who Speak Native Languages

“The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in North Dakota is prioritizing the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines to those who speak Dakota and Lakota languages. Standing Rock Tribal Chairman Mike Faith tells KXMB-TV it’s about keeping customs alive.” Associated Press, Time Magazine, January 1, 2021

Jesse Jay Taken Alive died on Monday, Dec. 14, after contracting the coronavirus in October. [He taught Lakota culture and language at a school in his hometown of McLaughlin, South Dakota.] Lakota Language Consortium

“It’s something we have to pass on to our loved ones, our history, our culture our language. We don’t have it in black and white, we tell stories. That’s why it’s so important,” Faith said.

The Standing Rock reservation straddles the North Dakota and South Dakota border and is home to about 8,000 people, more than half of whom live in North Dakota. Faith said only about 300 people on the reservation are fluent in the language.

Frontline health care workers already have begun receiving he vaccine at the Fort Yates hospital, but starting next week priority will be for those who speak their native language.”

In Response to the Attack on Our Capitol By Cowards:

“My message to my fellow Americans and friends around the world following this week’s attack on the Capitol.” ~ Arnold Schwarzenegger~ January 6, 2021