With schools out, families going on vacation, and people getting vaccinated against the coronavirus, many are on the lookout for what to do and how to stay healthy and active this summer. Even though you’re active, it’s important to incorporate healthy things to do to stay in shape and enjoy all life has to offer. Carrie Dallas, Program Coordinator of the Lasting Indigenous Family Enrichment (L.I.F.E.) Program at Native Americans for Community Action (NACA), said,
“The perfect diagram of a healthy lifestyle is the Indigenous Medicine wheel. The diagram depicts balance in one’s life physically, mentally, cognitively, spiritually, and socially.”
Upcoming Summer Activities at NACA
NACA will be offering a host of fun summer events and activities that focus on staying healthy, while having fun with family and friends. Ms. Dallas mentioned several events that are taking place like the Navajo Cake, Pueblo bread making, steaming corn, playing Zuni games like shuttlecock, and even sharing culture through cultural expert presentations. Here are some of the featured events and activities NACA has available for you.
Health Promotion activities:
Summer Hiking series: This event occurs every last Saturday of the month and is a wonderful time to explore the great outdoors and local Flagstaff trails, which are suitable for every one of all age groups. All hikes begin at 7:30 a.m. at the head of the trail and last for about 2 hours. See you on the trails!
Sign up here now: https://docs.google.com/…/1FAIpQLSfud9ligJkAOS…/viewform
Upcoming Hiking events:
June 26th – Fisher Point (Boys and Girls Club)
July 31st – Schultz Creel Trail No. 152 (with the NACA Family Enrichment Camp)
August 28th – Picture Canyon
September 25th – Lockett Meadow
Family Summer Camp (July 31st – August 1st): Enjoy summer camp with your family at the Colton Community Gardens, from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m., for a weekend of trail walking, sharing about cultures, and opportunities to win prizes! Even though the camp is FREE, registration is required, limit 60 participants with a healthy breakfast and lunch provided Saturday and Sunday. Children must be accompanied by a parent/guardian for the duration of the camp.
Register here today: https://na.eventscloud.com/familyenrich or call (928) 526-2968 for more details. We hope to see you and your family for our Family Summer Camp!
Knot Run/Walk: Join us August 10th to August 22nd in Reverberating the 1680 Revolution of the Southwest. This FREE running/walking event follows the Knotted Rope, which was carried from village to village, unifying the Southwest through running. If it wasn’t for this significant time, Indigenous’ cultures would not have sustained the traditional lifestyle and values we hold dear today. Join with us as we continue the tradition together and learn more of the history and important facts surrounding this time honored tradition.
Feel free to add up your miles throughout the 12 day duration, which is a 20k or 12.4 miles. You run/walk anywhere you would like in any increment that works for you, 5k/10k/20k. To meet this in walking terms would be a mile a day. Track your run/walk and submit to us or share with us on Facebook @NACAFlagstaff with the hashtags #KNOTRUN, #THRIVE, and #INDIGENOUSWELLNESS.
Sign up today: https://docs.google.com/…/1FAIpQLSe2hxHlqaDnWP…/viewform or contact us for more details at (928) 773-1245, ext. 221 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
NACA’s L.I.F.E. Program Summer Activities
NACA’s L.I.F.E. Program is grant funded by the Center for Disease Control’s Tribal Practices for Wellness in Indian Country (TPWIC) grant. Ms. Dallas stated that the TPWIC grant, “focuses on the Indigenous populations because Native Americans have high rates of diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic diseases. Our program is designed to utilize tribal practices to help Indigenous people feel empowered to lead a healthy lifestyle.”
By providing these summer activities, we help Indigenous people hold on to rituals, practices, and cultures passed down from their ancestors while introducing healthier life-altering routines such as recipes and fitness presentations. Ms. Dallas added, “We want people to know these activities are happening and the L.I.F.E. program is here for them.”
Here are a couple volunteer gardening outings, presentations and family fitness events, group walk to run, and Pueblo bread cooking activities to add to your family’s summer calendar.
Garden Volunteer Days and Potluck: Happening every Sunday, we’ll plant warm weather crops and learn how to care for gardens and the importance of composting.
Noon – 3 p.m. at Colton Community Garden
3 p.m. – 5 p.m. at Izabel Community Garden
June 13th – Plant warm weather crops and transplants
June 20th – Caring for the garden and composting
June 27th – Caring for the garden (Only at Colton)
Presentations and Family Fitness: Every Tuesday evening, from 6 to 8 at the Puente de Hozho Elementary School gym, we’ll have cultural presentations discussing our cultural background along with family fitness discussions on eating healthy and understanding the differences between our emotions and feelings.
June 15th – “Gather” Film Screening
June 22nd – Understanding our Emotions and Feelings with Jacelyn Salabye
June 29th – Rainwater Harvesting with Emily Melhorn
Group Walk to Run: This event occurs every Thursday night, from 6 to 7 at Buffalo Park, as a way to stay in shape and enjoy nature. Soak up the area around you letting it fill you up and enrich you mind, body, and spirit.
Special Event: Pueblo Bread Cooking Demonstration by Somana Tootsie: Start your morning off with a unique demonstration on traditional Pueblo bread cooking, brought to you by Somana Tootsie, owner of Somana’s Traditional Catering. You won’t want to miss it!
Date: June 27th, 8 a.m. to noon at the Colton Community Garden
Don’t forget about the Oak Creek Overlook Native Artisan Market, where you can purchase all kinds of handcrafted Native American gifts and items like jewelry, ornaments, pottery, and decorations for your home. Even hear stories and creative expressions directly from the Native American artists and craftsmen themselves!
Located off Highway 89a, just 17 minutes south of Flagstaff, or 25 minutes north of Sedona, we’re open 7 days a week both summer and winter months! Come out and see what our shops have to offer you today!
Summer – 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Winter – 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.
We hope to see you at one of our many activities this summer as we’re here to help see you and your family healthy, happy, and enjoying life to the fullest. If you want to get involved with the L.I.F.E. Program, contact Carrie Dallas at (928) 526-2968, ext. 165 or email email@example.com. To learn more about NACA or how you can get involved with our organization, please contact us today!
NACA Celebrates Two of its Nurses during National Nurses Week
National Nurses Week, May 6th – 12th, is a time to honor and recognize nurses for the heart and dedication they bring to their patients in hospitals, healthcare facilities, and clinics all across the country. Only a year has passed since the coronavirus pandemic occurred and since then countless nurses, both men and women, stepped up the call to action to provide round the clock care to millions of patients, who were struck ill with the deadly virus. They administered not only treatments and care, but peace and comfort to those not able to have family members with them either in their last days or until they recovered and were able to go home.
Native Americans for Community Action (NACA) is using this week to highlight two of their on-staff nurses at their Family Health Clinic. One of their nurses, Natalie Metz, a nurse practitioner, said,
“Being a nurse means spending time with patients and understanding what about their health is important to them. It means believing that patients are experts in their own health and finding ways to support them in their journey.”
NACA’s Family Health Center Highlights Two On-staff Nurses
Natalie Metz, DNP, APRN, FNP-C – has been on staff with NACA since 2018, but has been a registered nurse since 2011 as a certified family nurse practitioner, advanced practice registered nurse, and doctor of nursing practice. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in nursing from Northern Arizona University, and her Master of Science in Nursing and Doctor of Nursing Practice from Frontier Nursing University. Ms. Metz first started working in the medical field as a patient care tech at a hospital, mentioning that she, “was able to see each medical specialty and how they interacted with patients. I chose nursing because it allowed me to combine medical and scientific knowledge with patient centered holistic care.” She then completed her nurse practitioner internship with NACA, stating that when she graduated she, “was lucky enough to transition right into practice at NACA and continue to see the same patients I met during school.” NACA’s Family Health Clinic offers a wide range of health services to the community, which is what drew Ms. Metz to the non-profit organization in the first place. Her areas of focus are family medicine with an emphasis on ages five and up, chronic disease management, wellness across the lifespan, LGBTQ+, and sexual health including STI treatment and prevention.
Ms. Metz commented, “I feel confident that my patients will receive quality medical care, as well as mental and physical health support to maintain wellness.” Her passion is to provide medical care to underserved populations and understand the individual needs of her patients.
During Ms. Metz’s free time, she enjoys spending time outside, particularly at the beach, doing all kinds of activities. She also likes relaxing with her wife, making fermented foods and playing fantasy football.
Verity Quiroz RN, MSN – has been on staff with NACA since 2020, but has been a registered nurse since 2004 with her specialty as a primary care nurse. She received her Associates Degree of Nursing from Cochise Community College and her Master of Science in Nursing from Walden University. Ms. Quiroz was drawn to NACA due in large part to her native heritage and when asked why she became a nurse, she said that, “I am a third generation nurse, my grandmother, my mother, and two of my aunts are in the nursing field. I was drawn to the occupation from the start.” Since graduating, she has worked in numerous medical positions starting from medical surgical, medical telemetry, overflow, nephrology, employee health, infection control to outpatient pediatrics, which include plastic surgery, orthopedics, cleft lip and palate, scoliosis, and cerebral palsy, just to name a few. She added that, “Healthcare can be difficult to navigate, (but) I am driven to advocate for patients and their healthcare needs.” Her passion is caring for underserved populations such as pediatrics and geriatrics.
During Ms. Quiroz’s free time, she loves fitness and workouts regularly, and enjoys going camping and hiking in the great outdoors with her husband and their four children, who keep them busy with soccer and gymnastics. She also helps her husband at his ranch on the Navajo Nation reservation and they all like to travel as often as they can.
NACA’s Family Health Clinic
The nurses at NACA’s Family Health Clinic are more than just nurses, but are here to ensure you’re well taken care of and get the health check-ups and medications necessary to keep you living and living life to the fullest. Ms. Quiroz ended with this comment that,
“Nursing is not just medical care. It is whole body, mind, and spirit care. We are often friends, confidants, counselors, caregivers, attendants, nannies, and nurturers. Nursing is compassion, advocacy, reliability, responsibility, and it is 100% what we want to do.”
If you need medical care, our clinic is here with many services to meet your needs. From acute and chronic illness care, physicals, immunizations, STD Testing, Diabetes Management, Pap and Breast Exams, Family Planning, to Well-Child checks, and WIC (up to age 5). We pride ourselves in focusing on Native American health care, while offering medical attention to the entire Flagstaff community, with a whole person in mind to get them the medical help they need. We are committed to providing compassionate, patient sensitive, and culturally sensitive clinic staff, like Ms. Metz and Ms. Quiroz, to guarantee the best healthcare for our patients. For your convenience, we also accept most private insurances as well as Medicare and Medicaid, and we do provide services for visitors, who plan to self-pay.
To schedule an appointment and start your healthcare journey in the right direction, call our Family Health Clinic at (928) 773-1245 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
To learn more about NACA or how you can get involved with our organization, please contact us today.