Native Village 

Youth and Education News

May 12, 2004,  Issue 133 Volume 3

"We need you as leaders, as sober people that are clear in mind, clear in spirit and in heart." Dave Anderson, Choctaw, Chippewa

Department Awards $34.6 Million Contract to Develop and Operate World's Largest Education Database
The U.S. Department of Education has awarded a five-year, $34,600,000 contract to Computer Sciences Corporation to develop and operate a new database system for the Education Resources Information Center (ERIC).  The ERIC database is the world's largest education database with more than 1,000,000 bibliographic records. The new ERIC will provide education materials more quickly and directly through the Internet.  "This is a major milestone in furthering the objectives of No Child Left Behind," said Secretary of Education Rod Paige. "For the first time, educators and policy makers will have an easy to use resource for gaining quick access to comprehensive and up-to-date information and research about education." Until the new database is completed, the current ERIC database will continue to be available, and materials selected in 2003 will continue to be added.

Heard Museum expanding
NEW YORK: The Heard Museum in New York City is expanding and reinstalling it's world-renowned  collection.  A $7,600,000 project will be titled Home: Native Peoples in the Southwest, and will showcase more than 2,000 objects in innovative displays. Displays will include: 
a traditional eight-sided Navajo Hogan;
a Hopi piki room (designed for baking the traditional flat bread);
a Yoeme, or Yaqui, ramada;
a courtyard garden filled with plants used in traditional Native arts.
The new addition is scheduled to open in the spring of 2005. The Heard was founded in 1929 by Dwight and Maie Bartlett Heard to house the couple's personal collection of Native American artifacts gathered from traders, galleries and art dealers
The Arizona Republic

AOL Expands Role in Saving for College
America Online is expanding its partnership with Upromise, a service that allows its members to save for their children's college tuition.  AOL members who make purchases with Upromise merchants will receive a rebate of up 10%. That money will be placed in the customer's college savings account. Under the new program, AOL will double any rebate received by AOL members from merchants signed up with Upromise, including Exxon gas stations, McDonald's and thousands of stores. More than 2,500,000  families have enrolled in Upromise. More than a million of AOL's 24,000,000 subscribers are enrolled.

Ban on Maori land claims divides a nation
NEW ZEALAND: New Zealand has always prided itself on its good race relations, but recent visitors to Wellington may think otherwise. An estimated 15,000 Maoris marched on the New Zealand capitol to protest a bill declaring the New Zealand coastline public property. Passage of the bill would terminate Maori rights and claims along the 18,000 kilometers of shoreline. The issue has divided the nation, while Prime Minister Helen Clark's administration says it will fire Maori parliament members who vote against the party. One Maori quit in protest while another decided to stay with the party. The bill passed its first reading by a vote of 65-55.,5942,9492763,00.html

Peru Police Report Warns of Social Unrest
LIMA, Peru: A classified police report warns that social unrest near Lake Titicaca could explode as rival groups of Aymara Indians try to wrestle power from provincial mayors. Mayors in seven towns and villages have been accused by constituents of corruption.  "The Aymaras don't feel like Peruvians. We have our own laws," said Roman Catholic priest Fausto Pari, an Aymara.  300 riot police have been put on a "on a state of alert" to protect bridges, gas stations and public offices.
Associated Press

BIA official says he won't resign
Bismark ND: Connecticut Senator Christopher Dodd has called for Dave Anderson to step down as head of the Bureau of Indian Affars. Dodd claims Anderson is no longer making critical decisions on tribal recognition.  "I will not step down," Anderson said, nor would he apologize for previously supporting casinos. "Gaming opportunities for our Indian people have often helped tribal infrastructure and created meaningful jobs."  Anderson, a Choctaw and Chippewa, recently spokes at the United Tribes Technical College graduation where he told United Tribes graduates to be passionate about their goals.  "(American Indians) are victims of change," Anderson said. "We must be architects of our destiny rather than victims of change."  United Tribes officials said this year's graduating class was the largest in the school's 35-year history. Eighty-nine students received degrees.

Nunavut Welcomes Its First Two Inuit Nurses
Nunavut: Lily Amagoalik of Kimmirut and Asenath Idlout of Pond Inlet became the first nurses to graduate from the Bachelor of Science in Nursing program at Iqaluit's Nunavut Arctic College. Idlout, who also received the Baffin Regional Medical Staff Award for Professional Practice, hopes to practice to her native Pond Inlet. Amagoalik also hopes to go to Kimmirut where she lived for three years after graduating from high school in Iqaluit. Amagoalik won the Clinical and Academic Achievement award sponsored by Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. Both will be ready to take up full-time jobs July 1.

New Option for Diabetes Patients
"Skincare Naturally,” a two-step exfoliate and moisturizer combo, was developed for diabetic patients. The cream is said to work wonders in healing wounds, is easy to use, and is one way to avoid amputation of extremities.  “It’s an exfoliate and also a moisturizer,” said Theresa Moller, Acting Health and Human Services Manager for the Osage Nation. “One box lasts approximately two months.” She also said a two month supply priced at $39.99 is well worth the cost since healing an ulcerated wound costs nearly $25,000 dollars, and if that doesn't work, amputation is the next step.
Learn more about Skincare Naturally:

"Therapy Dogs" Soothe Fears, Bring Joy to Patients
The magic of animals as healers is gaining attention in the medical world.  Animals comfort people who need a little love, a little diversion, and a little contact with normalcy in a world turned upside down by illness.  Interactions with animals reduces people's blood pressure, pain and cholesterol, calms them, and makes them happier. Handlers with the Southwest Canine Corps of Volunteers in Albuquerque, NM, visit hospitals and healing centers on a regular basis. Among their stories:
Sherry Mangold and Jake, the Greyhound, visited a very ill woman who had pictures of her own pets and livestock pasted on the hospital walls. The woman, who could barely move, put her finger through the bars alongside her bed as Jake came near and said  "beautiful" and "thank you" through a device in her trachea. Within a couple hours, the patient died.  "It was wonderful to know she had an animal with her" in her final hours, Mangold said.
Pat Broyles and her elkhound,  Jenny, visited a young man who had spent three weeks in a coma after being badly beaten.  Broyles put Jenny's paws up on the side of the bed and placed the man's hand on Jenny's velvety ears. "He started to smile. He started to rub her ears," Broyles said. "That was his first sign of any cognizance. His girlfriend was so excited. Nurses were looking through the window (into his room), beaming with excitement."
Jane Nedom, and her collie, Justice, visited a hospitalized child who was screaming, yelling, very distraught. She and another volunteer started rubbing the child's hands on their dogs. "By the time we left, she was totally relaxed, with a smile on her face," Nedom said.
Susie Hunter and Stella, her Great Pyrenees, help both the patients and hospital staff. "The staff needs it almost more than the patients," Hunter said. "They are overworked and underpaid."
The stories go on.  "The biggest reward," said Cindy Clark, who works with her Australian shepherd mix Spooky, "is when a crying child smiles, when a patient reaches out to a dog.
Associated Press

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome gets the attention of Congress
  Every day in the United States, eight babies fall victim to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, an unexplainable death of a child under the age of one. Native Americans have the highest rate of SIDS death in the nation:  2.6 times that of non-Hispanic white mothers. A study done by the Aberdeen Area Indian Health Service identified factors and behaviors that increase the risk of SIDS:
Alcohol consumption by women of childbearing age, especially during pregnancy;
Maternal and environmental tobacco exposure during pregnancy;
Pregnancy by women under the age of 20.

Congress has given $1,000,000 0to the Office of Minority Health to expand its program and reach more American Indian families.

Pacific Islanders Topping the Scales
KOSRAE, Micronesia: From Tuvalu to Tahiti, Pacific islanders have been putting on weight for decades as lifestyles and diets changed. In Kosrae, 82% are overweight, and one in eight adults has diabetes. There is a high incidence of obesity among school children. The World Health Organization warns of an "emerging epidemic" of diabetes, hypertension and other conditions due to obesity in Kosrae and the rest of the Federated States of Micronesia. The eating habits can be observed in the aisles of one general store: big cans of Crisco, corned beef and Spam (fat per serving: 140 of 180 calories), jars of mayonnaise, boxes of heavily sugared cereal, 50-pound sacks of rice, and no fresh vegetables.  "In this society, people believe fat is beauty," said nurse Matchugo Talley, To improve islanders health, Kosraean-language radio and word of mouth are bringing islanders, especially women, together for exercise walking groups and afternoon volleyball. The hospital staff is circulating a model diet based on local foods -- from reef fish and sea cucumber to papaya and breadfruit.  Meanwhile, people worry about the next island generation including.  Tadao Wakuk, traditionalist, is teaching his children to eat healthy foods.  "We're going to eat taro, with Kosraean soup."   He also looks forward to " fish, banana, and coconut."   Wakuk admitted his children are growing impatient with eating like their ancestors.  "If we're on the local food for a while, I hear it from my kids: `Dad, can't we have something else?"'

Is It a Stroke?
Sometimes symptoms of a stroke are difficult to identify. Now doctors say any bystander can recognize a stroke by asking three simple questions:
* Ask the individual to smile.
* Ask him or her to raise both arms.
*Ask the person to speak a simple sentence.
If he or she has trouble with any of these tasks, call 9-1-1 immediately and describe the symptoms to the dispatcher.  Widespread use of this test could result in prompt diagnosis and treatment of the stroke and prevent brain damage.

Navajo housing decried
Members of the House Financial Services subcommittee on housing and community opportunity recently visited the Navajo Reservation.  They were welcomed into the 2-room home of Marie Keams, 49, where she raised seven children.  One room held two beds, two couches, dressers and a wood stove. The other room had a propane stove and a U.S. flag taped over the door.  No electricity. No running water. And the well outside is contaminated with oil, so Keams must get her drinking water from the Cameron chapter house several miles away."  Among the committee members' comments:
"I've been to 48 or 50 different countries, and [Navajo Rez] housing is comparable to the Third World," said Rep. Robert Ney, R-Ohio" Those are the toughest living conditions I've seen."  
Rep. Rick Renzi, who invited Ney to the reservation, was appalled at housing he saw in his district after being elected about 18 months ago.  "I visited Kaibito and saw three children living in a mud hut with their grandmother," Renzi said. "Their stomachs were distended with dysentery. When I came home, I cried. I thought, 'How can I call myself a congressman and not do something about this?' "
Maxine Waters, D-Calif., said she represents the inner city areas of Los Angeles, which contain large pockets of poverty."They're heaven compared to this," Waters said. "It's unbelievable seeing this kind of poverty in America. It's like South Africa."

At a hearing in Tuba City after touring the rez, the subcommittee heard from the heads of several Native American tribes. The leaders said that, at the current funding level, it would take 123 years to meet the current need. And budgets are being cut each year. Committee members vowed to return to Washington and work for improved funding and other solutions.

Foundation Invests in Indian Country
SAN JUAN ISLAND, WA: The Northwest Area Foundation has selected four American Indian communities for funding to reduce poverty and develop community leaders. Checks for $250,000 have been mailed to: 
1. The Lummi Indian Nation near Bellingham, Wash;
2. The Cheyenne River Sioux in Eagle Butte, SD;
3. Turtle Mountain Chippewa in Belcourt, ND;
4. The Colville Tribes in Omak, Wash.
Ultimately, millions of dollars could be granted to the tribes to implement their programs.
Indian Country Today

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