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Working with Native American Communities in MA

Page history last edited by Aleya Martin 10 years ago

October 29, 2013 Working with Native American Communities in Massachusetts


Presentation by Cedric Woods, UMass Boston, Institute for New England Native American Studies

Working with Native American Communities in MA Presentation.pdf

Links to Video Clips

     We Still Live Here

     Living in Two Words


The resources below are categorized according to the list below. Please scroll down to see all of the resources.

  • Native American Tribes in MA
  • Substance Abuse Resources 
  • Resources for Youth
  • Local Organizations
  • State Organizations 
    • BSAS Publications 
  • National Organizations
    • SAHMSA 



Some Native American Tribes in Massachusetts



Substance Abuse Resources

Sobriety Pow Wow’s  - The Powwow is an event that reflects upon many important aspects of Native American society.


White Bison - White Bison offers sobriety, recovery, addictions prevention, and wellness/Wellbriety learning resources to the Native American community nationwide. Many non-Native people also use White Bison's healing resource products, attend its learning circles, and volunteer their services.


Red Road - The Red Road is a group of American Indians in recovery from alcohol and drugs. It is also includes the family and/or friends of an alcoholic/addict.


Wellbriety Training Institute - To support a sustainable grassroots Wellbriety Movement by developing and providing culturally based training, tools and resources to enable the ongoing growth and sustainability of the Wellbriety Movement.



Resources for Youth

Philips Brooks House Association – Native American Youth Enrichment Program (NAYEP) - serves Native American children of all tribal ancestries across the Boston area. As a camp, NAYEP aims to provide culturally appropriate summer activities for the Native American youth of Greater Boston while unifying the community and presenting youth with safe, productive, and enjoyable summer programming that affirms Native and multicultural identities. For more information please contact NAYEP@pbha.org.

NAYEP Big Sib - a mentoring extension of the NAYEP. For more information, contact NAYEPterm@pbha.org.


Native Tribal Scholars Program - serves students of American Indian/Native Alaskan heritage (members of state or federally recognized tribes and residing in Massachusetts), providing them with the skills and motivation necessary for access to and SUCCESS in High School and entrance into college or advanced training.


Indian Education Funding - a program is designed to address the unique education and culturally related academic needs of American Indian and Alaska Native students, including preschool children, so that these students can achieve to the same challenging state performance standards expected of all students. The program is the Department's principal vehicle for addressing the particular needs of Indian children.


Youth Regional Treatment Centers - to provide quality holistic behavioral health care for American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) adolescents and their families in a substance-free residential environment that integrates traditional healing, spiritual values, and cultural identification. Through education and culture-based prevention initiatives, evidence- and practice-based models of treatment, family strengthening, and recreational activities, youth can overcome their challenges and recover their lives to become healthy, strong, and resilient leaders in their communities.


United National Indian Tribal Youth (UNITY) - a national network organization promoting personal development, citizenship, and leadership among Native American youth. The UNITY Mission is to foster the spiritual, mental, physical, and social development of American Indian and Alaska Native youth and to help build a strong, unified, and self- reliant Native America through greater youth involvement. 



Local Organizations

Wampanog Language Reclamation Project - Wôpanâak Language Reclamation Project, a project that, after 150 years of dormancy, is bringing back to life the tribes' sacred privilege and right -- their ancestral language.


Native American Lifelines - dedicated to providing Substance Abuse, HIV/AIDS and Hepatitis prevention to the American Indian community through a comprehensive continuum of care that is patient centered, culturally sensitive and optimal for personal growth. 

     Contact: Hope Shwom, Site Manager


North American Indian Center (NAICOB) - NAICOB assists Native Americans by providing job training and education. NAICOB also serves as a resource center for housing, health and social services and other related programs. The mission is to promote greater self-determination, socio-economic self-sufficiency, spiritual enhancement, intercultural understanding and other forms of empowerment for the North American Indian Community. 


Centro Comunitario de los Trabajadores of New Bedford – CCT - Centro Comunitario de Trabajadores (CCT) is an organization dedicated to influencing local, state and national policies, in order to provide solutions to the problems of workers and the community. We accomplish this through the process of organization, education, and action.


Worcester Inter-Tribal  Indian Center (WIIC) - The Worcester Inter-Tribal Indian Center is a non-profit organization established in 1981 for the promotion of Native American heritage and traditions, arts, and ideals. WIIC sponsors an annual Native American Powwow each June, in order to share the beauty of the Native American experience and to promote education and appreciation for the customs and creations of various tribes. We value the fellowship of all those who are interested in the native way.


Gedakina – Experimental Outdoor Education and Leadership Development for Native American Youth & Women from across New England - a movement of like-minded community members and allies working to provide resources and opportunities for Native American/indigenous youth, women and families from rural, urban and reservation communities across New England, and beyond.



State Organizations

Massachusetts Commission on Indian Affairs (MCIA) - The fundamental role of MCIA is to assist Native American individuals, tribes and organizations in their relationship with state and local government agencies and to advise the Commonwealth in matters pertaining to Native Americans.

     Contact: Jim Peters, Executive Director


Massachusetts Center for Native American Awareness, Inc. (MCNAA) - The organization was founded by Burne Stanley-Peters and her late husband Slow Turtle to develop and implement programs that assist needy Native American residents with basic needs, college related expenses, and cultural and spiritual enrichment; as well as to increase public understanding, awareness, and appreciation of Native Americans.


Publications and Reports from BSAS

Native American Indians and Military Families and Veterans ReportThe Massachusetts Department of Public Health (DPH) Bureau of Substance Abuse Services (BSAS) has undertaken this assessment in order to better understand the underserved populations of Native American Indians (NAI) and Military Families and Veterans (MFV), with respect to substance abuse, mental health, and co-occurrence. This is in part influenced by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) priorities, but is also part of the overall strategic planning process that BSAS has undertaken in 2012. BSAS has engaged Health Resources in Action (HRiA) to lead this process, including the evaluation component.


Coming Home: Preventing Alcohol and Drug Abuse Among Native American Teens - The Massachusetts Department of Public Health developed this booklet in collaboration with representatives from Native American communities in Massachusetts. This booklet explores ways family members can help prevent youth drinking and other drug use. 



National Organizations

Indian Health Service – an agency within the Department of Health and Human Services , is responsible for providing federal health services to American Indians and Alaska Natives. The provision of health services to members of federally-recognized tribes grew out of the special government-to-government relationship between the federal government and Indian tribes. This relationship, established in 1787, is based on Article I, Section 8 of the Constitution, and has been given form and substance by numerous treaties, laws, Supreme Court decisions, and Executive Orders. The IHS is the principal federal health care provider and health advocate for Indian people, and its goal is to raise their health status to the highest possible level. The IHS provides a comprehensive health service delivery system for approximately 1.9 million American Indians and Alaska Natives who belong to 566 federally recognized tribes.


National Council on Urban Indian Health - a membership-based organization devoted to supporting its membership in the development of quality, accessible, and culturally competent healthcare programs for American Indians and Alaska Natives living in urban communities by serving as a resource center providing advocacy, education, technical assistance, training, and leadership.


National American Indian and Alaska Native (N AIAN) Addiction Technology Transfer Center (ATTC) -  provides educational opportunities for those interested in substance abuse treatment and counseling, including health professionals in primary prevention and treatment of substance abuse. National American Indian & Alaska Native (N AIAN) Addiction Technology Transfer Center (ATTC) will serve as the national subject expert and key resource on adoption of culturally legitimate addiction treatment/recovery services to support professionals working with AI/AN clients with substance use and other behavioral health disorders and the AI/AN behavioral health workforce, using recognized state-of-the-art technology transfer principles.



American Indian and Alaska Native Culture Cards: A Guide to Build Cultural Awareness  - Intended to enhance cultural competence when serving American Indian and Alaska Native communities. Covers regional differences; cultural customs; spirituality; communications styles; the role of veterans and the elderly, and health disparities, such as suicide.

      PDF: SAMHSA American Indian and Alaska Native Culture Cards.pdf


Prevention and Recovery Newsletter Summer 2013 

     PDF: SAMHSA Prevention and Recovery - Summer 2013.pdf


National Survey on Drug Use and Health Reports


  • Need and Receipt of Substance Use Treatment among American Indians or Alaska Natives 2012

               Link: Need and Receipt of Substance Use Treatment among American Indians or Alaska Natives 

               PDF: Need and Receipt of Substance Use Treatment Among American Indians and Alaska Natives.pdf


  • Substance Use Among American Indian or Alaska Native Adolescents 2011

               Link: Substance Use Among American Indian or Alaska Native Adolescents

               PDF: Substance Use Among American Indian or Alaska Native.pdf


Tribal Training and Technical Assistance Center (Tribal TTAC) - Committed to providing comprehensive broad, focused, and/or intensive training and technical assistance to federally-recognized tribes and other American Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) communities seeking to address and prevent mental and substance use disorders, suicide, and promote mental health. Our goal is to use a culturally relevant, evidence-based, holistic approach to support native communities in their self-determination efforts through infrastructure development, capacity building, as well as program planning and implementation.


Indian Alcohol and Substance Abuse Interagency Coordinating Committee - Coordinating across federal agencies responsible to address alcohol and substance abuse issues, including DOI's (Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Indian Education), DOJ's (Office of Justice Programs, Office of Tribal Justice) and HHS' (IHS and other agencies in charge of assisting Indian Country)


Tribal Law and Order Act of 2010 upon SAMHSA Executive Summary The Act reauthorizes and amends the Indian Alcohol and Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (IASA). Through the Tribal Law and Order Act of 2010 Congress sought to engage new federal partners to build upon previous efforts in addressing alcohol and substance abuse in Indian country. 

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