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Pleading Message to Indian Country

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Pleading Message to Indian Country
By
Terrance H. Booth, Sr. – Nishwilgun Tsimshian

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This writer is a great grandfather, grandfather and father writing this with multifaceted feelings and emotions due to a sudden loss of a granddaughter. This article is written in memory of her and we looked at the person with much family love. Rest in Peace my beloved Granddaughter. This departure from us who remain brings shock, sadness and heavy hearts along with many tears. Much pain is within us who remain and having many remembrances of the beloved person that is no longer in our presence or no longer in our midst.
Messages were heard of resolving a life style and hoping to become clean and sober was heard both in person, via telephone with a pouring out of the departed inner most feelings of wanting to make a change in her life. Encouraging words were put forth to assist her to gain full commitment to change her life style.
To our Native Nations listen to the voices of those that need your family presence and who do need your help and they need much love and sometimes tough love to intervene on those of us who have addictions. It is far pass the time to take a firm stand to help create a better tribal environment for all of our Native Peoples. This writer joined and encouraged my own tribe to make a commitment to become clean and sober. My community approved having intervention teams come to our reservation setting and a team of counselors when out into the community to seek individual intervention for the community members that were facing drug and alcohol addictions. They spent three weeks in the community and drew out 25 tribal individuals that had written commitments to become clean and sober. Each day during the three weeks we were guide how we can help others with addictions to become clean and sober. At the end of the three weeks there was a community celebration for those that made this commitment to become clean and sober. Of the 25 individuals who made this commitment to become clean and sober 5 of them were youth.
So Native Nations help is available and our generations of the future needs us to help them for we as Natives confront many social problems especially among our Native Youth who need your care and your love and be the center of attention providing a better tribal environment for them.
A First Nations success happen in British Columbia: “In this case study, you will read what has become, in "Indian country," the nearly legendary story of Alkali Lake, a Shuswap Indian Reserve of some four hundred people near Williams Lake in north-central British Columbia. You will read of how the Alkali Lake people brought about a dramatic transformation from the depths of severe alcoholism and social devastation, to become an inspiration, a role model, a helper and a teacher to hundreds of other communities.” [1] This community intervention happen because one of the tribal ladies got tired of the whole community having an addiction of alcoholism. If one person spoke up for her entire community it can happen for all of Indian Country. This writer is a recovering alcoholic and if spouse did not take her stand in behalf of family this writer would not even be writing this needed article. Native Nations we as Natives confront many obstacles in our life and we do have a difficult life and the world around us preys upon us a Native Peoples. Please take your stand to completely stop all addictions existing among our Native Peoples. We all have our tribal values and morals and from our midst great things can happen for us all if we are clean and sober.
Listen to this voice: “Mr. Twin emphasizes that First Nations residents are chronic-stage alcoholics and drug users who have been living on the fringes of society for their entire lives. For them to participate in organized clean and sober housing “is exceptional.” Mr. Twin also described the spiritual healing that occurs for many of the residents during their time at First Nations House. The residents who try to implement spiritual principles in their lives are the most likely to stay clean and sober because they realize they can experience more from life. Mr. Twin says, “I don’t ask them, but I can see it in them. There is a change that comes about and a spirit that enters them. It is a miracle when it happens.”” [2]
As Tribes we have cultural strengths, cultural wisdom and we need a re-introduction of ourselves as Natives for we need tribal leadership in preserving our own well-being and keeping our youth in our midst. Of one lady in British Columbia is able to turn not only herself around but woke up the true spirit of being Native and drew up the strengths of her people. Imagine if we collectively intervened for the good of our people we would have a better existence and a better tribal environment. Let’s us make a change that would impact our very presence and re-introduce ourselves to ourselves as Natives. It can happen and has happen and help is available.
1. http://www.4worlds.org/4w/ssr/Partiv.htm
2. http://www.stjames-cathedral.org/pubs/midst/09April/neighbors.htm

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