PUBLISHED: 5:11 PM on Wednesday, December 6, 2006
Devil's Club Nation team from Juneau invited to take part in year-long Healthy Native Communities Fellowship
The three-member Devil's Club Nation team from Juneau is one of 15 small community-based wellness teams from around the country invited to participate in the Indian Health Service's Healthy Native Communities Fellowship program for 2007.

The Devil's Club Nation core team features:

Alan Travasso, the Juneau Health Promotion Manager for the SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC);

Alberta Aspen (Travasso's grandmother), a retired Internal Revenue Service Agent and current administrator for the Tlingit & Haida Indians of City and Borough of Juneau (aka, Juneau Tlingit & Haida Community Council), she served as president of THICBJ for six years and currently sits on the THICBJ governing board; and

Dolores Cadiente, a retired State of Alaska Deputy Clerk of Court, Criminal Clerk & Coordinator, Alaska Justice Information System Security Officer; Chief Justice of the Central Council of the Tlingit and Haida Indians of Alaska (Central Council) Tribal Court; current member of Juneau Tlingit & Haida Community Council; delegate to the Central Council and member of the SEARHC Board of Directors.

The Healthy Native Communities Fellowship is a year-long program that brings together about 40 community health and wellness specialists, substance abuse workers, social service professionals, tribal and local government leaders and volunteers. Each of the teams is required to come up with a community action project for their communities. The 15 teams will attend four week-long retreats during the year at various places around the country, plus there are weekly teleconferences where the teams learn how to implement their projects and discuss what ideas work and which ones don't.

"I am honored to represent SEARHC in this year's fellowship as Devil's Club Nation," Travasso said. "I think attending this fellowship will lay the foundation we need to bring a new focus of wellness to the Juneau community."

The Devil's Club Nation is one of three teams from Alaska in this year's program, joining the Hopeful Hearts from Chenega Bay and Unangan Ataqan Akun! (We Aleuts Are One) from Anchorage. SEARHC was involved with the Kake Healing Heart Committee in the 2006 Fellowship program and with the Sitka-based Community Fun and Wellness Team in 2005. SEARHC co-hosted the Fellowship's July 2006 retreat in Sitka.