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In 2022 and 2023, our organization expanded community engagement services with an emphasis on telling our own stories and contributing to our own strengths-based narratives. We introduced cultural programming dedicated to reducing health disparities and chronic diseases within our community. We led a community-wide survey and held services specifically dedicated to elders. We continued to stay true to our mission focused on wellness in our community by destigmatizing mental health and education through arts and culture. Our projects are visually summarized below:

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Indigenous Arts Gatherings

Our Indigenous Arts Gatherings were designed to empower community members to engage in experiential learning that fosters access, equity and inclusion through arts and storytelling. Indigenous Arts Gatherings were held in the fall of 2022 and spring of 2023 and included the development of a brief toolkit and solidarity training slides to support the development of intentional partnerships.

Decolonizing Data to Support Indigenous Elders

Decolonizing Data to Support Indigenous Elders was designed based on the results of our recent Needs Assessment project which included five focus groups designed for sub-populations within our local Indigenous community. Participants within each of the five focus groups emphasized the need for services for Indigenous elders. This project included data collection through three community surveys where our team focused on identification of priorities shared by community members for community members. This project also included two in-person Elder’s Circles held in the fall of 2022 as well as the creation of one two-three page summary of recommendations.

Honoring Indigenous Health

Honoring Indigenous Health was dedicated to reducing health disparities among AI/AN community members in Los Angeles County. This project centered Indigenous knowledge systems through a cohort model to highlight the interconnected nature of physical and mental health as well as their impact upon immediate and extended relatives. Cohort members gathered three times in the summer and fall of 2023 to focus on cultural approaches to Diabetes awareness, prevention and education.

Traditional Mental Wellness Gatherings

Throughout 2023, we hosted five Traditional Mental Wellness Gatherings aimed to promote mental health services, reduce stigma, and increase community member engagement in the Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health American Indian/Alaska Native UnderServed Cultural Communities. This project utilized traditional methods of healing such as language, prayer, spirituality, history, songs, and food to build connections and reclaim these traditions as a way to improve overall health outcomes. In addition, we provided a resource guide on housing, employment assistance, food and mental health resources to attendees.

Indigenous Community Engagement Campaign

The Indigenous Community Engagement Campaign included the creation and distribution of five videos designed to uplift our local community with culturally appropriate, strengths-based messages. These videos contribute to the contemporary representation of our community and also promote mental health services, reduce stigma, and increase the capacity of the public mental health system in Los Angeles County.


Wellness Care Packages

We offered free Wellness Care Packages to community members throughout the year. Each package included a variety of items based on community-identified needs and their own direct selection. This includes (1) immune support and wellness supplies such as herbs, teas, and honey; (2) Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as K-95 masks, hand sanitizer, and disinfectant wipes; (3) health supplies including thermometers, blood pressure machines, glucose, and oxygen monitors; (4) sensory processing items such as earplugs, compression vests, rocking pillows for feet, etc. and (5) infant/toddler care items such as diapers, formula, and hygiene supplies, etc. 

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