The Tribal Youth Resource Center is committed to supporting communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. We recognize that the communities we serve each face unique impacts. As a resource, the Tribal Law and Policy Institute has launched an Indian Country COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Resources Page with links to information and resources concerning relevant tribal, federal, and state issues, initiatives and resources for effectively addressing the COVID-19 pandemic in American Indian and Alaska Native communities. The site is designed as a clearing house of relevant resources across a broad range of topic areas in pursuit of TLPI's vision to empower Native communities to create and control their own institutions for the benefit of all community members, now, and for future generations.
May is Mental Health Awareness Month. While awareness of and attention to mental health is always important, it is becoming increasingly visible as we encounter the stresses of the current public health crisis. Though available data shows young people may not be as at risk for COVID-19 as adults, we know that they are still vulnerable to the mental health impacts of this global crisis (Center for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], n.d.). Combined with the fear and worry about the health of loved ones, youth may be experiencing grief associated with the loss of normalcy that the current crisis is creating. Disruption in routines such as school and daily interaction with friends can cause stress and anxiety. In addition, youth may grieve the loss of participating in significant life events such as graduation, cultural ceremonies, the final season of their sports career and the list goes on.
The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Tribal Youth Training and Technical Assistance Center provides culturally appropriate, trauma-informed and developmentally appropriate training, resources, information and other related technical assistance to all OJJDP Tribal Programs grantees and federally recognized tribes across the nation. The OJJDP Tribal Youth Training and Technical Assistance Center has developed culturally specific training and technical assistance for tribes seeking to build capacity to develop, expand, improve and maintain their juvenile justice systems. Priority areas include juvenile healing to wellness courts, tribal youth specific prevention, intervention, and treatment programming and tribal-state collaborations to meet the needs of American Indian/Alaska Native children exposed to violence.
The staff at the Tribal Youth Resource Center welcomes the opportunity to work with tribal programs in the coming years. With a wide range of skills and experiences in trauma informed care, cultural based teachings, community participatory evaluation, as well as mental health, law enforcement, suicide prevention, judicial expertise, child welfare, juvenile justice, tribal-state-federal relations, and tribal sovereignty, our staff is well equipped to provide a high level of technical assistance and training. As part of the many programs and services available through the Tribal Law and Policy Institute, we are fortunate to have the extensive infrastructure to support our efforts. Our center is commited to providing culturally relevant and trauma-informed principles in our delivery of services to the OJJDP tribal grantees and the other tribes who seek our services.