The National Indian Health Board (NIHB) was honored to be guests at the Mississippi Band of Choctaw (MBCI) Indian Fair over the weekend (July 16-17). The Choctaw Health Center hosted a “Health Plex” that included a vaccine drive, behavioral health services, mental wellness, grief counseling, healing education and practices, and diabetes prevention. Choctaw Health also partnered with the Mississippi Department of Health and the state Veterans Affairs hospital to provide more vaccines to more people.
At the Health Plex, NIHB Public Health Policy and Programs Associate Chyna Locklear and Communications Consultant April Hale shared information about the organization and the Act of Love campaign – that focuses on wearing a mask and getting vaccinated – with specific messages to Native youth and young people. Over two days, NIHB gave out nearly 400 Act of Love post vaccination kits to Tribal members and Native youth who were recently vaccinated. Each kit included an Act of Love branded mask, hand sanitizer, stickers to promote social distancing, and postcards to share with your relatives and encourage them to get vaccinated too. NIHB saw many youth, supported by their parents and relatives, get the Covid vaccine. Getting the vaccine is part of NIHB Act of Love campaign. See NIHB’s Facebook page for posts from the event.
NIHB is proud to lift up Native youth. They are community organizers and elder caretakers. They are revitalizing language and traditional ways of life. Native youth are impactful and influential, and giving back to the community is their Act of Love. Empower Native youth and support their choice to get a COVID-19 vaccine.
MBCI Chief Cyrus Ben shared with NIHB some words of praise and encouragement. With over 4,000 people vaccinated, MCBI has been actively hosted vaccine drives to vaccine more Tribal members and youth as well as non-Native community members. See Chief Ben’s video message here.
NIHB extends appreciation to the MBCI community, Chief Ben, Choctaw Health Interim Director Mary Henderson and staff, and Fair Coordinator Natasha Willis. For more information about the Act of Love campaign, please contact Tyler Dougherty at [email protected].