April 25, 2016
IA2 is pleased to announce a formal partnership with the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians (North Dakota) to design and implement a multi-generational project aimed at addressing diabetes and healthy eating.
The project is funded by a grant from the Notah Begay 3 Foundation. IA2 Executive Director, Dave Baldridge, finalized the partnership as part of a site visit this week to Turtle Mountain that included a meeting with Chairman Richard McCloud and the Tribal Council. Baldrige also met with staff from the local schools to discuss the project.
The project, based on the successful 1,000 Grandmothers concept pioneered by IA2 and Michigan Public Health Institute, will work to bring together tribal elders and young tribal members in initiatives based in the tribe’s elementary, middle and high school.
According to Jessica Ferris, Turtle Mountain Diabetes Program Director, “Diabetes is a huge problem in our community, as it is throughout Indian Country. We needed to think about new ways of working to address the problem, and we believe the 1,000 Grandmothers project model will help us do that. This project literally brings the wisdom and experience of our tribal elders to the table with our young people in a way that links back to our traditional ways of doing.”
Recurring traditional food meal days will be scheduled at each school throughout the 2016 – 2017 school year. Project design and implementation will be overseen by a committee of tribal members including elders, school administrators, dieticians, home economics teachers and nutrition staff. Traditional and social media awareness campaigns will be incorporated into and wrapped around the events to increase awareness and promote diabetes-prevention education.
IA2 project director, Dave Baldridge, will provide remote and onsite technical assistance with design and implementation, based upon successful practices identified in the 1,000 Grandmothers pilot. Baldridge will also work on the development and production of brief video narratives documenting project activities. In addition, IA2 will assist TMBCI with project evaluation activities.