- Our Food is Our Medicine — September 2014Staff with Partnerships for Native Health spent a revitalizing day at “Our Food is Our Medicine,” an annual conference sponsored by the Institute of Indigenous Foods & Traditions. This year the conference was hosted by the Suquamish Tribe in Kitsap County. Participants attended workshops on the environment, climate change, treaty rights, and medicinal plants indigenous to the Pacific Northwest. One highlight of the day was a plant walk through a nearby wooded area. We learned about the healing properties of many indigenous plants, as well as traditional practices for collecting them. A central principle in all indigenous gathering is the importance of expressing gratitude for the earth and respect for the plant. Another is to be generous with what you receive from the plant: sharing with other people is essential.
- Native Pride Basketball Camp, August 2014Native Pride Basketball Camp is a three-day program for Native youth, held at Nathan Hale High School in Seattle, WA. Athletes learn intermediate and advanced basketball skills, teamwork, and sportsmanship. They also participate in daily talking circles and discuss traditional ways, with an emphasis on tribal identity and cultural values. This year, several P4NH staff members attended the camp to do educational outreach on healthy eating choices and cancer prevention. They prepared Enchilada Casserole – a healthy variation on a traditional recipe – as well as fruit salad. P4NH staff member Abigail Echohawk then gave a talk on the importance of a healthy diet and lifestyle in preventing cancer, and offered some tips on how to choose healthier options.
- SpiritWalk, May 31, 2014Every year the Seattle Indian Health Board sponsors SpiritWalk, a major fundraising event. SpiritWalk raises thousands of dollars annually to support educational, health, social, and recreational programs for American Indians and Alaska Natives in Washington. Members of Partnerships for Native Health gathered at Seattle Center on May 31 to participate as a team in in this event. We raised funds, stretched, and walked with other participants to Myrtle Edwards Park and back again. We also hosted a table where we handed out health information and bean soup mix to raise awareness about wellness and healthy eating. We had a great time, and we hope to see everyone at SpiritWalk next year!
- Spring Pow Wow: April 11-13, 2014For more than 40 years, the University of Washington has sponsored an annual Spring Pow Wow, offering a welcoming space for people to gather as a community and celebrate Native culture and traditions. Members of Partnerships for Native Health were excited to attend this year’s Spring Pow Wow and be a part of the festivities. We hosted a photo booth to promote colon cancer screening! Pow Wow attendees had fun dressing up in costumes, chatting about colon health and cancer prevention, and getting their photos snapped.
Canoe Journey: Paddle to Quinault – August 2013
Every year, thousands of indigenous people paddle across the open ocean in cedar canoes as part of the annual Canoe Journey. Since its beginnings in 1993, the Canoe Journey has become a tradition that seeks to reinvigorate Native cultures and build bridges between Native and non-Native communities. This year, in a dramatic finale, participants from more than 60 different tribes paddled ashore at Point Grenville, Washington (in the Quinault Indian Nation) on August 6, 2013. Some came from the nearby regions of the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia, while others paddled all the way from Alaska, Hawaii, Japan and New Zealand! Members of Partnerships for Native Health were thrilled to be there to welcome them. Our team sponsored a table at the event, handing out health information to attendees from across the hemisphere.
For the past three years, the Institute of Indigenous Foods & Traditions at the Northwest Indian College has been holding an annual conference called “Our Food is Our Medicine.” This year, the Suquamish Tribe hosted the conference from September 24th to 26th at the beautiful Kiana Lodge on the shores of the Salish Sea. The event draws people from around Indian Country to discuss and learn more about how American Indians and Alaska Natives are revitalizing traditional food systems in their communities. Read More »
For 500 years, Native Americans have suffered drastic and often violent changes in their lives because of European colonization. The effects of this epic disruption have persisted down the generations. One term often used to describe this long-running tragedy is historical trauma. Read More »
We conduct community-centered research, training, education, and outreach to improve the health and quality of life of American Indian and Alaska Native populations.
Partnerships for Native Health (P4NH) is a program located at the Center for Clinical and Epidemiological Research (CCER) at the University of Washington. Formalized in 2009, it emerged from two decades of work with Native communities. Over time, the program has developed a comprehensive, interdisciplinary approach to achieve our mission of improving the health and well-being of American Indian and Alaska Native people of all ages. We have done so by incorporating these core principles: engagement and participation with our community partners; education, training, and capacity-building for Native people and communities; infrastructure development; technical assistance; research on healthcare and other community needs; and widespread sharing of our results in ways that recognize and respect the unique cultural contexts of American Indian and Alaska Native people.
If you happened to stop by our offices this summer, chances are you would find staff from Native People for Cancer Control filling bags with our very special bean soup mix. Each bag is stuffed with five different kinds of beans and a small card with a soup recipe. Also on the card is information explaining how eating beans can reduce your risk of cancer. Our bean soup mix is intended to launch conversations at community events, where we often set up tables for health education.
Indigenous Cultures Day at the Seattle Center gives indigenous peoples the opportunity to express their culture through performance, food, visual art, film, and other festive activities. The program is held annually in August and is free to the public. Last year, Indigenous Culture Day featured performances by Aztec, Filipino, Guelaguetza, Haida, Japanese, Maya, Panamanian, Peruvian, Tahitian, and Zapotec traditional dancers, representing North, Central, and South America as well as the islands of the Pacific. This year, the program will be held on Saturday, August 17, with events at the Seattle Center Armory and the Mural Amphitheatre from 10 AM to 7 PM.