27th Annual Rural Providers' Conference by jianghongl


									        27th Annual
Rural Providers’ Conference
              Kodiak, Alaska
             June 7-11, 2010

Rural Alaska Community Action Program, Inc.
    Kodiak Area Native Association, Inc.
Kodiak, Alaska

Kodiak Alutiiq Dancers captivate the crowd with their              Julie Knagin lights the seal oil lamp on the first day of
traditional regalia and dance.                                     the conference as Frank Peterson looks on.
Photo by Angela Gonzalez                                           Photo by Angela Gonzalez

Kodiak Island - the “emerald isle” and home of the Alutiiq culture - is the second largest island in America. It is a
region steeped in history and opportunities for adventure.
Photo by Janice Berry
                                       Introduction          1
                          History of the Gathering           2
             Community Hosts Throughout the Years            3
                                Keynote Speakers             4
                               A Life Transformed            5
                                Staking Ceremony             6
                                      Stakeholders           7
                              Conference Highligts           8
                                       Youth Track           10
                            Workshop Descriptions            12
                               Acknowledgements              17

The Rural Providers’ Conference (RPC) is an annual
gathering designed by rural Alaskans to share
information, gain skills and participate in training to
address substance abuse in culturally significant ways.
The RPC is conducted in a style compatible with Alaska
Native lifestyles and ways of communicating and
includes ceremonies, talking circles and cultural events.
Participants include substance abuse service providers,
youth, Elders and family members interested in gaining
new energy and celebrating their own sobriety.

The Rural Alaska Community Action Program, Inc.
(RurAL CAP), Kodiak Area Native Association, State of
Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, Elihu
Foundation Charitable Trust, First Alaskans Institute,
Koniag, Inc. and Wells Fargo Bank Alaska sponsored
the conference, with core funding provided by the State
of Alaska Department of Commerce, Community &
Economic Development.

The conference theme for 2009 and 2010 was “Lighting the Lamp for Strength in Unity - Laampaaq Kwarluku,
Allrilurmi Tukningcarluta” (Alutiiq Translation). The RPC rotates to a different rural community every two years,
and will be held in Dillingham in 2011 and 2012.


         Cover Photo of Annie Lou Williams of Kalskag and Priscilla Yaska of Chuathbaluk: Margaret David
         RPC Logo Design: Amy Modig
         Photos: RurAL CAP Staff and Volunteers
         Design & Layout: Angela Gonzalez

                                                                       2010 Rural Providers’ Conference Summary     1
    About the Rural Providers’ Conference                     1984-2010
    Over the last 27 years, The Rural
    Providers’ Conference (RPC)
    has become a leading force for
    the state’s growing sobriety

    The RPC, also called the
    Gathering, was started in
    response to the sobriety
    initiative among Alaska Native
    communities in the early
    eighties. Those involved in the
    movement saw a need to create          RPC attendees at the RPC in Copper Center in 1988
    a partnership to share information and resources. The first Gathering was held in 1983 in Anchorage and was
    sponsored by the Alaska State Office of Alcohol and Drug Abuse (ADA) and was initially intended for staff in
    rural Alaska programs that were funded by ADA. It was at the end of the first meeting when Anna Frank of
    Fairbanks suggested that the people in rural Alaska who were served by the programs should be included in
    the design of RPC.

    Since then conference participants have planned and facilitated each Gathering while RurAL CAP, co-hosting
    Alaska Native regional organizations and other sponsors provide logistical support. The annual event has
    blossomed to include more
    participants from more
    communities each year. This
    year the event included over
    200 people from throughout the
    state. Conference participants
    now include service providers,
    those in recovery, family
    members and other participants
    who wish to celebrate sobriety
    and learn new skills.

    The Gathering serves as a forum
    where rural providers can share
    resources that are culturally
    relevant to the Native Alaska way
    of life. The conference features
    traditional ways of celebrating         Attendees listen to a presentation at the RPC in Fairbanks in 1999
    and sharing this information,           Photo by Shanwne Albright
    including talking circles, fiddle
    dancing, traditional storytelling and potlucks. Community representatives share approaches that are working
    well in their communities. Participating youth voice substance abuse concerns in conference tracks focusing on
    prevention. The Gathering unifies and empowers. It serves as a networking center and as a training ground for
    community leaders. It encourages the creation of community-made solutions and collaboration of community
    efforts to reduce substance abuse and promote wellness.

2     Lighting the Lamp for Strength in Unity
      1984        Anchorage
  1985-86         Tyonek
  1987-88         Copper Center/Glennallen
  1989-90         Tok/Tanacross
  1991-92         Kenai/Soldotna
  1993-94         Nenana
  1995-96         Bethel
  1997-98         Sitka
  1999-00         Fairbanks
  2001-02         Kotzebue
  2003-04         Seward
  2005-06         Bethel
  2007-08         Copper Center/Glennallen
  2009-10         Kodiak

                                                                                          Map by Michael Knapp

Communities Represented by 2010 RPC Participants
Akhiok             Kiana            Ugashik            Ganado, AZ
Aleknagik          Kodiak           Upper Kalskag      Oak Bluffs, MA
Ambler             Larsen Bay       Venetie            Reno, NV
Anchorage          Manokotak        Wasilla            Seattle, WA
Bethel             Marshall         Wrangell           West Jordan, UT
Buckland           McGrath
Chevak             Nanwalek
Chuathbaluk        Nenana
Cooper Landing     New Stuyahok
Cordova            Nome
Dillingham         Nondalton
Eagle River        Old Harbor
Fairbanks          Pedro Bay
Fort Richardson    Port Alexander
Gakona             Port Graham
Haines             Pt. Hope
Homer              Selawik
Hope               Seward
Juneau             Shungnak
Kalskag            Sitka             A group from the Bristol Bay region attended the RPC in preparation to host
Kaltag             Togiak            the 2011 RPC in Dillingham.
Kenai              Twin Hills        Photo by Angela Gonzalez
Ketchikan          Tyonek
                                                                    2010 Rural Providers’ Conference Summary       3
    Presenters    Amy Modig, Gloria Gorman and Nick Pavloff
    Stories about personal and professional triumphs over substance abuse often have a positive impact on
    attendees. The 2010 keynote presenters were Amy Modig of Anchorage, Gloria Gorman of Juneau and
    Nick Pavloff of Eagle River. The keynote addresses are available online at www.ruralcap.com.

                                      Amy Modig, Anchorage

                                      Amy Modig is an Athabascan with ties to Shageluk, Grayling, Tanacross and
                                      Takotna. Amy currently resides in Anchorage and owns Gathering of Eagles with
                                      her husband, Doug. She works as a researcher, coordinator, writer and artist.
                                      Amy shared three interwoven stories about her life, a traditional story of a little
                                      mouse and about the seventh circle of life. Amy described having a difficult
                                      early childhood until she was adopted at the age of three, then later how she
                                      began having difficulty with life at the age 13. At 28 years old with two children
                                      and no car or home, she became sober and “walked out of the darkness.” She
                                      said to heal, one needs to “Let go of hurts, angers and resentments. Look at
     Amy Modig of Anchorage           what works for yourself.” She described how her counselor and friends helped
     Photo by Angela Gonzalez         her to see the possibilities at the beginning of her sobriety.

                                      Gloria Gorman, Juneau

                                      Gloria Gorman of Juneau is from the Navajo Reservation in Arizona. As the
                                      Human Services Director for the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Alaska Region in
                                      Juneau, Gloria works with Alaska tribes developing strong Indian Child Welfare
                                      Act (ICWA) programs and Welfare Assistance programs. “Alaska has the highest
                                      rate of Native children in the state foster care system. About 60% are Alaska
                                      Native or American Indian. We need to do something about abuse and neglect
                                      in our tribal communities.” Gloria said. She shared the following suggestions
                                      of what communities can do to prevent abuse and neglect: be trained to read
                                      body language; mandate tribal workers to report sexual abuse and undergo
     Gloria Gorman of Juneau          background checks; adopt a Children’s Bill of Rights; develop village-based child
     Photo by Nick Gonzales           protection teams and safe homes; teach parenting skills.

                                      Nick Pavloff, Eagle River

                                      Nick Pavloff, Jr. is of Aleut and Russian descent, originally from Karluk on
                                      Kodiak Island, and currently resides in Eagle River, Alaska. He was raised by
                                      his grandparents, Tania and Herman Malutin, in Karluk. Nick was a commercial
                                      fisherman by trade for twenty-five years. Nick held various positions within his
                                      community in an effort to support his family, including construction worker,
                                      heavy equipment operator, and teacher’s aide. Nick spoke of growing up in a
                                      traditional lifestyle and of his struggles with alcoholism and overcoming them,
                                      despite many obstacles. See his story on the next page.
     Nick Pavloff of of Eagle River
     Photo by Nick Gonzales

4     Lighting the Lamp for Strength in Unity
A Life Transformed              Nick Pavloff

Nick Pavloff, Jr. is a certified substance abuse
counselor and visits tribal communities within the
Prince William Sound. Nick received certification
from the University of Alaska Fairbanks Rural Human
Services program in the fall of 2008. Nick’s efforts in
the community focus on sharing his life experiences
with others through storytelling.

Nick says drinking alcohol gave him courage to be
around people, and to say and do things that he
wouldn’t typically say and do. Rather than giving him
courage to do things, he says, “It took away more
from me than anything.” He began drinking alcohol
because of peer pressure.

Nick says, “I drank on my 17th birthday simply
because of peer pressure. I didn’t want to drink.
I wasn’t planning to. I drank a pint of vodka and         Nick Pavloff was interviewed for a project at the RPC
                                                          Youth Track.
passed out.” He experienced blackouts over the 23
                                                          Photo by Angela Gonzalez
years he abused alcohol. Nick began his sobriety
journey in 1994 at the age of 44.                       Alaska Natives in the past 100 years. He says, “I’m
                                                                tired of watching people suffer.” Nick believes
Nick began to look at reasons as                  “When I            people are not dealing with that historical
to why he started and continued             stopped drinking,          trauma and are suppressing it by
drinking. He realizes he was             everybody looked the            drinking. Nick says, “We can’t heal
angry at his parents and              same, but everybody was             and move forward without dealing
wounded by their divorce           speaking a different language. with the history and past first.
and abandonment. “My mom                I didn’t quit drinking, I         There are things we have to deal
abandoned me three times                 changed my lifestyle.”          with generationally to understand
and my dad disappeared.” He                                             change.”
learned he had to forgive them. His
grandparents told him he had to love his                          Nick now enjoys time with his wife, Connie,
parents. When Nick was a child, he discovered               eight grandsons and two granddaughters from his
he wasn’t a normal kid. He had difficulty learning and  blended family of seven.
struggled with dyslexia. He was told he was stupid by
teachers and classmates.
                                                                                          RPC attendees speak
                                                                                          with Nick Pavloff after his
“The first five years of sobriety were the most                                           keynote speech. Often
difficult for me. I almost started drinking again so                                      speakers serve as an
many times. When I stopped drinking, I humbled                                            inspiration to those who
myself to my wife and children and asked for their                                        work in the recovery
forgiveness. It is not easy to change. It took me                                         field.
three years to get my feet on the ground.”                                                Photo by Nick Gonzales

When Nick speaks at events and to people he talks
about the historical traumas that have occurred to

                                                                      2010 Rural Providers’ Conference Summary          5
    A Tradition Continues in Kodiak
    The Staking Ceremony was introduced to the Rural            country. Phil Lane Jr. of Alberta, Canada introduced
    Providers’ Conference (RPC) in 1985 to signify              the ceremony to Alaska in 1985. In the RPC’s
    the commitment to sobriety. The stakes used for             modern staking ceremony, participants declare their
    the Staking Ceremony symbolize a young man’s                commitment to sobriety. The small stakes in the
    spear. The involvement in the ceremony is a public          ceremony symbolize the warrior’s spear. It is a way of
    declaration of one’s intention for sobriety,                    “tying” oneself to the spear and facing the enemy
    because it is made in public with those                               – alcohol and drug abuse. The stakes are
    one respects or honors.                                                   always decorated with black, white
                                                                                yellow and red. Black represents the
    The staking ceremony’s roots lay                                              West and African American people;
    in a battle between the Mandan                                                  white is for the North and White
    Indians and the Lakota Sioux.                                                    people; Yellow is the East and
    According to the tale, a Mandan                                                  Yellow People; and Red stands for
    warrior “staked” himself to the                                                  the South and Red people. Each
    earth during a battle with the                                                   RPC participant is given a stake to
    Lakota. He believed so strongly                                                  take home that reminds them of
    in his cause that he refused to                                                 their commitment to sobriety for
    retreat. A Lakota Elder was so                                                themselves and their loved ones.
    impressed by the Mandan warrior’s
    courage, honor and commitment to                                              The first ceremony had one couple
    his people that he stopped the Sioux                                       represent each Alaskan culture, and
    who were about to kill him, saying, “Even                             included an original bundle of stakes. The first
    in an enemy, we must honor this example.” Instead,          holders of the bundle were Doug Modig of Ketchikan
    they nursed the warrior back to health and returned         and Amy Lohr of Tanacross. They passed the bundle
    him to his people.                                          to John and Teresa Pingayak of Chevak in June 1991
                                                                at Kenai and to other Stakeholders since then. Ed and
    Since its recreation years ago by a small group             Priscilla Peele of Sitka held the bundle from 2003-
    in Canada, the modern staking ceremony has                  2009. In 2009, the bundle was passed to Fred and
    grown tremendously with stakeholders all over the           Irene Coyle of Kodiak.

     Lureta Porter of Kodiak works with the Youth Track attendees to paint 200 stakes for the Staking Ceremony.
     Photo by Angela Gonzalez
6     Lighting the Lamp for Strength in Unity
Staking Down for Sobriety

Stakeholders and supporters prepare for the Staking Ceremony in Kodiak by sharing stories.
Photo by Angela Gonzalez

During the RPC, the Stakeholders plan and facilitate
the Staking Ceremony on the final day of the RPC.
They hold prayer ceremonies throughout the year.
They offer guidance and encouragement to people in
recovery from alcohol and drugs.

Stakeholders make a committment to sobriety and
work toward it in personal and professional capacities.
They often help people by counseling them or
listening to them. Stakeholders often serve on the RPC
statewide planning committee, speak at the RPC, and             Doug and Amy Modig and Camille Booth present the
serve as ambassadors in their region to promote the             “Healing Our Future” workshop during the RPC.
Sobriety Movement.                                              Photo by Janice Berry

Amanda Peele of Sitka
Carol Rose of Fairbanks
Doug & Amy Modig of Anchorage                         Ed and Priscilla Peele
Ed & Priscilla Peele of Sitka                         moderate an ‘Open Mic’
Fred & Irene Coyle of Kodiak                          session to give attendees
                                                      an opportunity to discuss
John & Teresa Pingayak of Chevak
                                                      what they learned.
Randy Mayo and Violet Hunt of Stevens Village         Photo by Angela Gonzalez
Reggie & Linda Joule of Kotzebue
Shirley Holmberg of Fairbanks
Tom & Jennifer Young of Sitka

                                                                          2010 Rural Providers’ Conference Summary   7
    Evening events included Opening Ceremonies, a Potluck, Culture Share Talent Show and a dance. Many RPC
    speakers talked about the need to have fun in the quest for sobriety.

     Andy Teuber, President, Kodiak Area               The Pilot Bread Band of Anchorage plays fiddle music during the RPC
     Native Association provides as warm               Dance.
     welcome during the Opening Ceremony.              Photo by Angela Gonzalez
     Photo by Angela Gonzalez

     RPC attendees enjoy a potluck with a sampling of various traditional         RurAL CAP Board President, Andy Ebona,
     foods from around Alaska.                                                    and Executive Director, David Hardenbergh,
     Photo by Angela Gonzalez                                                     prepare herring eggs for the RPC Potluck.
                                                                                  Photo by Angela Gonzalez

     Doug Modig moderates Circle Talk, a talking circle during the RPC.
     Photo by Angela Gonzalez

8     Lighting the Lamp for Strength in Unity

Irene Coyle and Lydia Olson of              Doug Modig drums                John and Teresa Pingayak sing during the
Kodiak sing Alutiiq songs during the        during the the Culture          Culture Share Talent Show.
Culture Share event at the RPC.             Share Talent Show.              Photo courtesy of Doug & Amy Modig
Photo by Janice Berry                       Photo by Janice Berry

The crowd participates in the Kodiak Island Drummers performance.                   Youth Track attendees share a meal.
Photo by Amy Flaherty                                                               Photo by Joie Brown

                          “I’m in recovery
                          myself. I want to
                          share sobriety...give
                          it away. Bring your
                          family and friends
                          next year, because
                          we’ll be doing the
                          same thing.”
                          - Ralph Anderson,
                          Bristol Bay Native

                          Photo by Angela
                          Gonzalez                      The youth hold a Circle Talk of their own during the RPC.
                                                        Photo by Angela Gonzalez

                                                                            2010 Rural Providers’ Conference Summary      9
 The RPC provides education and
 opportunities for teens across Alaska
 through its Youth Track. Teens build
 connections with others from rural
 Alaska. Youth Track participants
 attended the morning keynote and
 talking circles of the main RPC, and
 met separately in the afternoon for
 their own workshops. The teens
 helped to plan the youth track, along
 with RurAL CAP and Sun’aq Tribe staff.
 Some of the youth are Members of
 RurAL CAP’s new AmeriCorps Youth
 Action Program.

 This year’s Youth Track is the second         Youth edit audio stories with the Alaska Teen Media Institute.
                                               Photo by Angela Gonzalez
 year of an exciting collaboration
 between teens from around rural Alaska and a group of teens on Kodiak Island. The sessions and activities
 were chosen to fulfill three key areas: Substance Abuse and Prevention; Skill-Building and Leadership; and
 Healthy, Recreational Activities. Activities also included a hike up Pillar Mountain, and tour of the Kodiak Electric
 Association’s wind turbine farm.

 Media Project & Communication Skills
 Presenters:      Alaska Teen Media Institute, Robert Stormo, Kelsey Hernandez and Max Jungreis

 The Alaska Teen Media Institute (ATMI) provides statewide youth with the tools and training to share their
 stories in their own voices. ATMI’s Assistant Director and two veteran teen reporters focused on discovering
 and expressing youth perspectives. Participants created audio projects using media equipment to capture the
 RPC experience. Listen to their pieces at www.aerho.org/youth_action_program/youth_intro.html.

 Music Instruction and Therapy
 Presenters:      Kodiak Island Drummers, Mr. D. (below) and 4 youth

 This lively and rhythmic session introduced drumming basics by Kodiak’s well-known and energetic youth
 drumming group. Presenters said, “Everyone has a beat so discover yours!” Presenters discussed music as a
 therapy for addiction recovery, a way to improve overall health and connect people to profound experiences.

10   Lighting the Lamp for Strength in Unity
Townhall Meeting on Underage Drinking
Moderator:     Natasha Pineda, Project Coordinator,
               Department of Health and Social
               Services, Behavioral Health/Prevention
               and Early Intervention Services

Community members and RPC attendees were
encouraged to bring their concerns, challenges,
and solutions to underage drinking to the forum
sponsored by the State of Alaska, Division of
Behavioral Health. Participants engaged in a
thoughtful and proactive discussion focusing on            Youth Track and RPC attendees discussed the solutions to
what communities and individuals can do to prevent         underage drinking in Alaska.
alcohol use among our youth.                               Photo by Angela Gonzalez

“What Is A Leader?” at the White Sands Beach Outing
Presenters:    Nina Gronn, Kodiak teen and all youth planners

Youth discussed and identified leadership qualities, ideas and thoughts about what a leader is and how they
can strive to be positive youth leaders in their communities. Icebreakers were lead by the youth participants.

wreckED: Video, Discussion and Card Game
Presenters:    Amy Flaherty, RurAL CAP

wreckED is teen-oriented substance abuse and prevention program from the Partnership for a Drug-Free
America. Amy and Shelsea showed a short video, played a card game, and had a discussion to learn about the
realities and consequences of substance abuse.

Youth Keynote Address: Substance Abuse Prevention at Home
Presenters:    Shane Nukwak, Dillingham and Brianna Jeffers, Nenana

The presenters shared their personal stories and commitments. Shane has been part of the foster care system
and shared his healthy message of growing up in chaos yet choosing to live clean and sober. Brianna talked
about witnessing hardship and substance abuse, and her commitment and ideas for clean living and leadership.

Youth Track Planning Coordinators
Amy Flaherty of RurAL CAP and Emily Capjohn Sun’aq Tribe of Kodiak

Youth Track Planners
Selena Andrews, Aleknagik                                 Brianna Jeffers, Nenana
Sandi Echuck, Togiak                                      Charley Modig, Anchorage
Ruben Eluska, Kodiak                                      Trevor Nanalook, Manokotak
Marn Elvehjem, Old Harbor                                 Timmy Roberts, Venetie
Matt Faubion, Anchorage                                   Desirae Sam, Tetlin
Jaynee Fritzinger, Wrangell                               Jodi Samuelson, Kalskag
Nina Gronn, Kodiak                                        Lynn Slats, Chevak
Lawrence Gust, New Stuyahok                               Shelsea Smith, Port Alexander
Came Inga, Old Harbor                                     Ian Stone-Wahl, Anchorage
                                                                         2010 Rural Providers’ Conference Summary     11

     Participants share insights in the “Moving Through the Steps” workshop with Martha Abbot and Dr. Gary Ferguson.
     Photo by Angela Gonzalez

 RurAL CAP recognizes the need for attendees seeking professional development in the provider field.
 Professionals and paraprofessionals had the opportunity to receive training through the Alaska Commission for
 Behavioral Health Certification. Continuing Education Units (CEUs) for licensed social workers and counselors
 were available, as well as a university credit from Kodiak College, UAA.

 The RPC workshops are chosen as a result of Statewide and Local Planning Committee meetings. They begin
 with a review of the past year’s RPC evaluations where participants list the topics they would like to learn
 more about. Concurrently, the local planners circulate a community needs survey to determine what the local
 residents and providers want to learn more about. From there, workshop proposals are circulated to potential
 presenters. Ultimately, it is left up to the local planning committee as to the final workshops that will be
 chosen. There were four concurrent workshops during the afternoons of the RPC, and some were extended
 into two parts. Another key part of the conference was Circle Talks, a form of talking circles, which took place
 in the mornings.

 Advocacy Skills: Igniting the Spark in the Recovery Community
 Presenter:        Anna Sappah, Executive Director, Alaska Addiction Professionals Association

 Advocacy skills are a valuable tool for treatment providers and the recovery community. One of the greatest
 challenges for providers is to educate and advocate in their communities. For policy makers it is recognizing the
 importance of treatment and recovery services in their area. People seeking recovery services as well as those
 who have successfully completed treatment can be the best advocates for programs. Teaching staff, clients and
 alumni how to tell their story in the most effective way was one goal of the workshop.

 Cultural and Spiritual Interpretation of Tobacco
 Presenters:       Betty MacTavish, Tobacco Education Coordinator, KANA and Nick
                   Gonzales, Tobacco Education Coordinator, Akeela, Inc.

 A discussion of the traditional, medicinal and ceremonial uses of tobacco
 was held. Questions such as, “What is the commercial use of tobacco
 doing to our Alaskan culture?” and “How we can make positive changes for
 the health of our villages through Tribal Tobacco Policy?” were discussed.
 Five BIRCH AmeriCorps Members and five youth shared digital stories on
 tobacco education and cessation. Personal stories carried messages to help             Nick Gonzales and Betty MacTavish
 heal, educate, and entertain.                                                          Photo by Angela Gonzalez

12    Lighting the Lamp for Strength in Unity
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Disorder (FASD) 101 Part 1 & 2
Presenter:    Nancy Wells, Infant Learning Coordinator, KANA and Lois Law, Southcentral Foundation Pathway Home

Participants learned to understand FASD as a brain based disorder and basic and useful strategies to use when
working with affected individuals. The presentation provided insights into how alcohol interferes with prenatal
development causing permanent damage. Emphasis was placed on damage to the brain and neurologic system
and how that affects an individual over their life span.

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Disorder (FASD) 201 Part 1 & 2
Presenters:   Nancy Wells, Infant Learning Coordinator, Louis Law, Southcentral Foundation Pathway Home

Participants learn what interventions and supports have been found effective and promising for individuals with
FASD and practiced using problem solving tools that may be helpful in their environment when living and/or
working with individuals with FASD.

Grief in Recovery: A Tool for Healing
Presenter:    Ron Dempsay (at right), Victims for Justice

Participants learned about grief recovery and how it
can be a positive step for healing and recovery. Victims
for Justice helps victims cope with trauma and grief,
ensures their rights are respected within the judicial
system, advocates for change that will make a balanced
justice system, and implements community programs
for violence prevention.

Healing Our Future
Presenters:   Doug and Amy Modig, Gathering of Eagles and Camille Booth, Executive Director, Creative Educational
              Resourcing of Alaska

Several innovations have proved effective in working with Native Communities across the state. Participants
learned about effective strategies that work for Native Communities toward creating health and wellness,
and participants were invited to share what gains they have made. Camille Booth described her program in
Metlakatla which helps students overcome dyslexia. The workshop brought awareness to the fact that many
adverse behaviors, including addictions, can be directly related to the inability to read.

                                                                       2010 Rural Providers’ Conference Summary     13
 Holistic Nutrition in Recovery
 Presenters:      Dr. Gary Ferguson, ND (at right), Director, Wellness and Prevention, Alaska
                  Native Tribal Health Consortium, and Martha Abbot, Movement Therapist,
                  Energy Healer, and Professional Level Yoga Teacher

 Participants learned the importance of creating a greater degree of consciousness
 around nutrition and its profound effect on overall health for people in recovery. This
 presentation incorporated wellness and self-care for the Provider/Clinician/Community
 Worker; “walking the talk” in recovery around nutrition, wellness, and being “whole.”
 Ms. Abbot shared her work around “moving through the steps.” Nutrient-dense food
 samples were displayed, along with simple meal ideas.

 Honoring the Truth: Healing from Childhood Sexual Abuse
 Presenters:      Elsie Boudreau, LMSW, Alaska Native Justice Center/Alaska CARES and Linda McLaughlin, Victim
                  Advocate/Trainer, ANJC

 Presenters focused on steps to healing from childhood sexual abuse, with an emphasis on wisdom from Elders,
 and allowed time for participation in a safe process.

 Hope for the Homeless
 Presenter:       Ben Kanohokula (at right), Outreach Coordinator, BSW, CDCII,
                  Homeward Bound, RurAL CAP

 Participants gained a greater knowledge of how and why people
 become homeless and how they can help within their own community.
 Homeward Bound, a self-paced alcohol management program for
 chronically homeless individuals, assists residents by providing outreach
 to homeless camps and shelters and facilitating access to detoxification,
 substance abuse and mental health treatment.

 In an Instant, for a Lifetime: Traumatic Brain Injury
 Presenter:       Jennifer Charvet, Resource Navigator, Alaska Brain Injury

 Traumatic brain injury is a health crisis in this state, especially in rural
 Alaska. This session covered the rates, causes, prevention techniques,
 and what participants can do after sustaining a brain injury. Participants learned that official brain injury
 rehabilitation may be far from home, but there are some things that can be done at home.

 Increasing Youth Resiliency: A Strategy to Prevent Substance Use and Suicide
 Presenter:       Becky Judd, Resiliency Youth Development Specialist, Alaska Division of Behavioral Health

 Participants learned about what resiliency has to do with youth substance use and suicide, what it means to
 be resilient, and how they can nurture resiliency in themselves and others. An overview of ways to measure
 resiliency was also presented.

 RPC is a friendly, personal interaction of people. I greatly benefitted from the conference and kindness of all
  - Attendee reflecting on the RPC
14   Lighting the Lamp for Strength in Unity
Journey to Wellness
Presenters:    Nick Gonzales (at right), Tobacco Prevention Specialist,
               Akeela, Inc. and Marilyn Balluta

The presentation focused on the power of storytelling as a change
agent with the use of digital storytelling. It combines stories about
alcohol/tobacco use and traditions. This workshop included information
about traditional activities, values and culture; wellness and health;
and spirituality and healing.

Moving through the Steps
Presenters:    Martha Abbot, Movement Therapist, Energy Healer, and
               Professional Level Yoga Teacher and Dr. Gary Ferguson, ND,

This workshop applied the process of Movement Therapy to the
principles of the Twelve Steps of Recovery. Participants were led
through a process for the purpose of gaining personal insight, exploring and integrating that insight through
creative expression, and then ‘owning’ that insight by sharing with the group. Participants received a greater
self-awareness and a sense of empowerment.

Raising Grandchildren, the Hidden Heroes
Presenter:     Linda Price, BSSW, MS Counseling, Volunteers of America, Alaska

The presenters shared information about grandparents who are caring for their grandchildren and support
that is available to them through Volunteers of America, Alaska. Many grandparents are raising their own
grandchildren due to drug and alcohol abuse or mental health issues of the children’s parents.

Responding to a Child’s Disclosure
Presenter:     Melody Livingston (at right), Behavior Health Consultant, KANA

This workshop covered the importance of how one responds to a child’s disclosure
of abuse. The response to a disclosure can make the difference between the child’s
ability to work through the victimization in the present or having the effects of
trauma throughout their lives. Presenters covered ways to help the child feel safe,
connected and empowered.

Stress Management for Couples in Recovery
Presenter:     Jim Miller, Alcohol Program Coordinator, Port Graham Recovery Services

This presentation was developed for Llangcarwik Residential Treatment program. Attendees learned about
myths/facts about stress, gender differences with regard to stress response and stress management.
Participants learned to effectively handle stress for relapse prevention, health and relationship satisfaction.

We need to heal the wreckage of our past. There has been so much pain and hurt. There’s also been a lot of
healing. We need to clear away the fog and confusion.
 - Doug Modig, Anchorage
                                                                          2010 Rural Providers’ Conference Summary   15
 Taking Care of Each Other: Incorporating HIV Prevention into the Care
 of Persons Living with HIV
 Presenter:       Fransing Daisy (at right), PhD, University of Washington

 Encounters with clients in recovery means providers have to know about HIV.
 Providing brief, tailored interventions works better than mere education about
 HIV. Participants learned about how to recognize someone’s attitudes, beliefs,
 skills and readiness to make a change. They also learned how to help clients think
 about ways to address circumstances of their sexual practices. Local and statewide
 resources were discussed and identified.

 The 12 Steps and Early Recovery
 Presenter:       Cisco Penamora, Addictions Coordinator and Heidi Barrett-McNerney,
                  Chemical Dependency Counselor II, KANA

 Based on their practical experience, the presenters explored how working the Twelve Steps can enhance an
 individual’s early recovery and help them maintain long-term sobriety. There was a group discussion of the pros
 and cons of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) and how it has worked or not worked as a tool for recovery with clients
 and in attendees’ personal lives.

 Traditional Healing: Alternative Health Care Options
 Presenter:       Maria Dexter, Traditional Healer, Norton Sound Health Corporation

 Participants learned about the power of natural healing. The session provided an introduction to traditional
 hands-on health care to help patients increase circulation, improve overall health, and overcome chronic pain
 associated with injuries. The presenters demonstrated a few of their traditional healing techniques on members
 of the audience.

 Voices of our Children
 Presenters:      Lureta Porter, ICWA Family Advocate, KANA, Amanda Metivier, Facing Foster Care in Alaska (FFCA)
                  Coordinator, Shane Nukwak, FFCA Alumni, and Debbra Washington, Kodiak Office of Children’s Services

 Participants listened and watched through “digitelling” (digital storytelling) and in-person stories from the voices
 of youth who shared their experiences of being in custody of the State Office of Children’s Services (OCS)
 and in the foster care system. The presenters emphasized the importance of establishing and maintaining
 cultural identity and connection for children, and they offered their ideas and suggestions as to what they
 need from their relatives, tribes and communities for support. Information about licensed and unlicensed
 kinship or guardian tribal homes in Alaska was provided, including Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) preference
 placements, and working with OCS.

 Wellness Through The Arts—Art Promotes Resilience
 Presenter:       Carol Loftfield, BIRCH AmeriCorps Member, Nondalton

 This program addressed stress reduction and anger management, interpersonal and intrapersonal
 communication, and creative cooperation. Participants learned about how the techniques can be applied in
 their homes and communities. The workshop offered a multimedia presentation with interactive skill-building,
 through music, inspiring text, artwork, video and art-activity. Participants were taught how to foster relaxation,
 healing and creative problem solving.

16   Lighting the Lamp for Strength in Unity
CoNfeReNCe CooRdINAtoRs
Janice Berry of RurAL CAP, Margie Bezona and Tammy Hansen of KANA

stAtewIde PlANNINg CommIttee membeRs
Dee Dee Bennis, Bristol Bay Native Association
Joseph Cantil, Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium
Nick Gonzales, Akeela, Inc.
Randy Madigan, State of Alaska Div. of Behavioral Health
Linda McLaughlin, Alaska Native Justice Center
Jim Miller, Port Graham Recovery Services
Doug and Amy Modig, Gathering of Eagles
Priscilla Peele, RPC Stakeholder (Sitka)
Carol Rose, Tanana Chiefs Conference

                                                                 Tammy Hansen and Margie Bezona
loCAl PlANNINg CommIttee membeRs                                 Photo by Angela Gonzalez

Margene Andrus, KANA                            Melanie Nelson, Providence Kodiak Island
Melissa Berns, Woody Island Tribal Council             Counseling Center
Margie Bezona, KANA                             Lydia Olsen, RPC Stakeholder
Emily Capjohn, Sun’aq Tribal Council            Frank Peterson, Sun’aq Tribal Council
Fred and Irene Coyle, RPC Stakeholders          Lureta Porter, KANA
Tammy Hansen, KANA                              Joanne Quass, KANA
Cindy Harrington, KANA                          Rita Royal, KANA
JJ Marsh, KANA                                  Gwen Sargent, KANA
Denise Malutin, Native Village of Afognak       Nancy Wells, KANA
Iver Malutin, KANA                              Jennifer Wolfrom, KANA

dooR PRIze doNoRs
Angelo’s                                        Joanne Quass
Anita Bailor                                    Kodiak Arts Council
Arc-n-Spark                                     Kodiak Electric Association
Channel Side Chowder House                      Kodiak Veterinary Clinic
Coastal Creations                               Lisa’s Island Hair & Tans
Cy’s Sporting Goods                             Mack’s Sport Shop
Era Aviation                                    Northern Pacific Fuel
Gwen Sargent                                    Scuba Do
Henry’s Restaurant                              Total Interiors
RuRAl CAP stAff
Janice Berry                                    Bruce Greer
Joie Brown                                      Ben Kanohokula
Cathie Clements                                 Shannon Johnson
Margaret David                                  Ella Morris
Amy Flaherty                                    TJ Snell
Angela Gonzalez
                                                           2010 Rural Providers’ Conference Summary   17
          27th Annual Rural Providers’ Conference
                  sponsors and Partners:

  Stake for Sobriety

       Core funding for this conference was provided by
       the State of Alaska Department of Commerce,
       Community and Economic Development.


                                                           Elihu Foundation
                                                           Charitable Trust

                       Kodiak Area Native Association


                                                                        Providence Kodiak Island
                                                                           Counseling Center
                                                  Native Village
                                                   of Afognak

              St. Innocent’s
                Academy                                              Woody Island Tribal Council

Join us at the next Rural                                           For more information:
Providers’ Conference in                                Rural Alaska Community Action Program, Inc.
                                                                      P.O. Box 200908
dillingham, Alaska on                                               Anchorage, AK 99520
may 30 - June 3, 2011!                                          (907) 279-2511 in Anchorage
                                                              (800) 478-7227 toll free in Alaska

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