Enhancing Nursing Capacity to Understand and Address the Needs of Native American Youth on the Fort Belknap Reservation

Johns Hopkins University and the Fort Belknap Indian Community will conduct and use research to develop a culturally-responsive intervention for preventing suicide among adolescents and young adults of the Nakoda and Aaniih Nations.

Through a community learning model with the Hopkins team, Fort Belknap nurses will learn applied research methodologies and will work as part of the research team focused on reducing health disparities. In the first phase of the work, they will use focus groups and interviews to identify and analyze how the social environment contributes to or protects against youth suicide. The team will then use survey data to measure individual, relationship, community, and societal risk and protective factors against youth suicide and suicide ideation. The project will utilize a Tribal Advisory Board and will center youth voice throughout the project design and execution. At the same time, Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing will engage in several activities to build its capacity for applied research, including integrating Indigenous methods into the curriculum to build Indigenous research methodologies in School of Nursing scientists, acknowledging their partners at the Tribal college through faculty appointments in the School of Nursing, and conducting fundraising to support an endowed professorship on Native American health. The university has also established a Center for Community Innovation and Scholarship, which supports faculty in developing sustainable models to promote the well-being of underserved populations, using research-practice partnerships as a key mechanism to for this work.

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