These stories feature model programs and successful rural projects that can serve
as a source of ideas and provide lessons others have learned. Some of the projects
or programs may no longer be active. Read about the
criteria and evidence-base for programs included.
Updated/reviewed June 2023
- Need: To provide Lakota elders with tools and opportunities for advance care planning.
- Intervention: An outreach program in South Dakota helps Lakota elders with advance care planning and wills by providing bilingual brochures and advance directive coaches.
- Results: Care for Our Elders saw an increase in the number of Lakota elders understanding the differences between a will and a living will and the need to have end-of-life discussions with family and healthcare providers.
Other Project Examples
Updated/reviewed January 2024
- Need: To foster relationships with American Indian people in New Mexico to determine culturally appropriate practices in reducing nicotine addiction.
- Intervention: NUPAC provides outreach, community programs, and cessation services.
- Results: In fiscal year 2023, 1,333 QUIT NOW and DEJELO YA quit line enrollees stopped using tobacco.
Updated/reviewed December 2023
- Need: To bring low-cost water and sanitation improvements to homes in Alaska Native villages without access to piped water or sewer systems.
- Intervention: The Portable Alternative Sanitation System (PASS) treats hauled water, provides for handwashing with clean water, and disposes waste without traditional piping.
- Results: Residents in the pilot project reported that PASS was cleaner and healthier than the self-haul method.
Added October 2023
- Need: To support pregnant and parenting women with a history of substance use, mental health, or co-occurring disorders in rural areas of Montana.
- Intervention: One Health, a consortium of Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs), developed a team of "recovery doulas" – individuals who are dual-certified as doulas and peer-support specialists. The One Health recovery doula program offers group and individual services to women and their partners from pregnancy through the first years of parenthood.
- Results: A team of nine recovery doulas (or doulas-in-training) employed by One Health offer services in ten rural Montana counties. Recovery doulas have provided essential support to women with substance use disorder, survivors of sexual abuse, unhoused individuals, and individuals facing other complex challenges.
Added June 2023
- Need: To address food insecurity and limited access to healthy foods among Indigenous elders living in tribal nations in Wisconsin.
- Intervention: The Tribal Elder Food Box Program distributes biweekly boxes filled with culturally relevant, locally-sourced meat, produce, and shelf-stable foods to elders in all 11 federally recognized tribal nations in Wisconsin – 10 of which are located in rural areas.
- Results: In 2022, the program distributed 24,400 boxes and purchased a majority of food products from Indigenous producers and growers.
Updated/reviewed May 2023
- Need: To help adults and children in rural South Dakota prevent or manage their diabetes.
- Intervention: The Facing Diabetes Project offered medical visits for adults and provided prevention and education sessions for the local 4th and 5th graders.
- Results: Many adults and children in the region felt better equipped to choose healthy foods, exercise regularly, and manage their stress: all factors that can help prevent diabetes or decrease its effects.
Updated/reviewed August 2022
- Need: Since the late 1800's, trauma caused by historic events have greatly affected the way of life for Menominee Indians living on the Menominee Reservation. Economic, socioeconomic, behavioral health, and physical health issues have risen and are causing direct implications for Menominee youth.
- Intervention: Through Fostering Futures, clinic, school, and Head Start/Early Head Start staff are trained in administering trauma-informed care and building resilience among children.
- Results: Behavioral health visits at the Menominee Tribal Clinic have increased, school suspension rates have decreased, and graduation rates have improved from 60% to 94% since 2008.