Local Impact - South Carolina

Catawba Indian Nation
Special Diabetes Program for Indians

Catawba Indian Nation’s Special Diabetes Program for Indians (SDPI) partnered with the Catawba Cultural Center (who had received a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)) to establish community gardens. The Tribe was (and continues to be) able to combine financial resources and staff in order to promote traditional foods and activity through gardening. The strong Tribal partnerships helped make it a success and the programs were able to get a lot done with a small amount of staff by working together efficiently. There are now program gardens at these sites: daycare, Head Start, after school/summer camp, Boys and Girls Club, senior center, and the clinic. In addition, the SDPI began supporting home gardens by providing materials for raised beds at the homes of Tribal members. This year, the program completed requests for garden help with 23 families.

Traditional interest in gardening among Catawba Tribal citizens also helped because the efforts removed some of the obstacles to having successful gardens by providing materials, advice and support. Raised beds work well in areas where the soil is mostly clay by making it easier to maintain both improved soil and problems of too little or too much rain. Many of the people who have requested help are seniors or those with physical limitations who are unable to till and manage large gardens. The program has kept many seniors gardening in their 80’s. More young families are asking for assistance with their gardens because the raised beds are easier to maintain and make it more likely that the garden will be successful. More youth now have gardening skills and knowledge about traditional foods through the program gardens.

Gardens help keep people active, increase access to fruits and vegetables, which improves people's diets, helps prevent diabetes, and assists in controlling blood sugar levels. Almost 50% of Catawba Tribal citizens over 65 have diabetes and many have pre-diabetes. The gardens funded by SDPI are helping citizens of all ages prevent and control diabetes by living in a healthier community.

Stories & Progams

Diabetes Program Participants
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Diabetes Care Providers
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The Poarch Creek Indian Community
Community Diabetes Support Group


Charlotte McConnell
SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC) Lifestyle Balance and Diabetes Prevention Program

Bristol Bay Area Health Corporation
Annual Diabetes Walk

Southcentral Foundation Special Diabetes Program for Indians


Celia Milner
CHR Department, Kaibab Band of Paiute Indians

Marlene Valentine -
Navajo Special Diabetes Project

Rudy Clark
Hualapai Healthy Heart Project


Case Manager
United American Indian Involvement

Jackie Patton
Chapa-De Indian Clinic

Amy Lemmer
Sonoma County Indian Health Project

Alberta Manuel
Sonoma County Indian Health


Mohegan Tribe
Uncasville, CT


Anela Lautalo


Christie Lussoro
Nimiipuu Health Diabetes Program


Becky Youngbear-Alvarado
Meskwaki Diabetes Prevention Program


Stephanie Crawford
Haskell Health Center Diabetes Prevention Program


Jena Band of Choctaw Indians


Aroostook Band of MicMac


Tracy L. Sagataw
Hannahville Indian Community Clinic Diabetes Program

Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians
Sault Ste. Marie, MI

Rebecca Price
Pokagon Health Services Special Diabetes Program for Indians


Arne Vainio, MD
Fond du Lac Human Services Diabetes Prevention Program


Pastor Thomas Ben
Fond du Lac Human Services Diabetes Prevention Program

Samuel Amos
Fond du Lac Human Services Diabetes Prevention Program


Faye Filesteel
Fort Belknap Healthy Heart Project


Clarissa Hoffman
Ho-Chunk Hope Diabetes Prevention

New Mexico

Judy Reuter
Santa Ana Pueblo
Elsie R. Pino
Ramah Navajo Heart Saver Project
Erlene Sandoval
Navajo Special Diabetes Project

New York

St. Regis Mohawk Tribe
Let’s Get Healthy Program

North Carolina

Ulela Harris
Cherokee Diabetes Program

Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians
Cherokee, NC

North Dakota

Cheryl Donoven
On Eagles Wings Diabetes Prevention Program


Terry Williams
Black Hawk Health Center

Allen Dale
Oklahoma City Indian Clinic (OKCIC) Get SET & Fight Diabetes program

Read more about OKCIC (PDF)

Glendine Blanchard
Absentee Shawnee Tribe Healthy Heart Program


Dylan Jones
NARA Northwest

Taylor David
Klamath Diabetes Prevention Program Cow Creek Consortium

Shirley Heath
Warm Springs Oregon Diabetes Prevention Program

Jennifer Smith
Warm Springs Oregon Diabetes Prevention Program

Larry Smith
Warm Springs Oregon Diabetes Prevention Program

Rhode Island

Mary Lou Stanton
Narangansett Indian Health Clinic-Diabetes Program

South Carolina

Catawba Indian Nation
Special Diabetes Program for Indians

South Dakota

Pete Fills the Pipe
Pine Ridge IHS Diabetes Prevention Program


Reggie Martinez
Uintah & Ouray IHS Clinic - Healthy Heart Project


Christina Hicks
SDPI-Community Direct Diabetes Grant
Confederated Tribes of the Chehalis Reservation

Buddy and Les Hoptowit (Brothers)
Yakama Indian Health Center Healthy Heart Project


Marion Reynolds
St. Croix Healthy Heart Program

Wanda McFaggen
St. Croix Healthy Heart Program

Wendell Waukau
Menominee Diabetes Program


Regina Whiteplume
Eastern Shoshone Diabetes Program