New Mexico Tribal communities have rich cultural traditions and enduring values that have contributed to our strong existence today, yet we also face challenges similar to communities across the USA. Alcohol, as well as other drugs, and related problems wreak havoc on our Tribal communities. American Indians have the highest rates of alcohol related deaths in New Mexico, both men and women (NMDOH, NM Substance Abuse Epidemiology Profile, 2016). This means we are losing people who bring cultural knowledge, love, tradition and kinship to something we can prevent. The New Mexico Tribal Prevention Project (NMTPP) was established by Native women and their allies to create effective substance abuse prevention systems in New Mexico’s Tribal Communities.
NMTPP continues to develop its strength-based approach that combines culture and outcomes. We work in partnership with Tribal communities to gather data, build the knowledge and abilities of community members, implement culturally relevant prevention strategies and evaluate the efforts of the community to help demonstrate the transformation that is taking place. We work to secure funding that enables us to use an approach that resonates and brings hope to the Tribal communities we work with.