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Working with Tribes Training




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Course and project information

The Working with Tribes Training project and its resulting e-course are intended to educate state and federal government officials on effective engagement with American Indian and Alaska Native Tribes. The training also provides background information on the colonial experience since contact with Europeans, how that experience has impacted the health and well-being of Tribal populations, and best practices for successful engagement with Tribal communities.

Created by NIHB with funding and support from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), this course is part of NIHB's aim to increase familiarity with Tribes throughout all levels of government; elevate Tribal health care and public health needs; and improve non-Tribal government employees' familiarity and comfort with working with Tribes.

The training module was created using input from Area Indian Health Boards and other Tribal partners; CDC staff; and other federal, state, and non-Tribal stakeholders. The training underwent two rounds of pilot testing and review prior to public release.

Target audience

While the training is intended for state and federal government officials, it is publicly available to all interested people at no cost. It may also be useful for other professionals, such as those who are working with Tribal leaders or conducting consultation activities. Additionally, the first module of the course provides general information on the impacts of colonization and historical trauma on Tribal populations that may be more widely useful for those who want to learn more about the experience of this nation's indigenous peoples.

Learning objectives

By the end of the course, you should be able to:

  • Describe how and why Tribal health changed after European contact.
  • Explain foundational components of federal Indian law and policy.
  • Define Tribal sovereignty and the government-to-government relationship.
  • List key social or historical determinants of Tribal health.
  • Discuss key historical impacts on Tribal health and wellness.
  • Identify best practices for working with Tribes.



Public Health Inquiries:

Robert Foley, M.Ed.
Chief Programs Officer

National Indian Health Board
910 Pennsylvania Ave, SE
Phone: 202-355-5494
Washington, DC 20003
[email protected]