Health Matters Celebrate Living the Good Life

Kym Howay talks abouts National Aboriginal Addiction Awareness week (NAAAW).

  • Nov. 16, 2011 9:00 a.m.

Kym Howay

Aboriginal Community Tobacco Reduction Coordinator with Interior Health

November 13 to 19 is National Aboriginal Addiction Awareness week (NAAAW).

This year, communities across our province and across the country will celebrate addiction free lifestyles by hosting feasts, community walks, educational events and family events that promote this year’s theme “Living the good life.”

“Living the good life” is another way of referring to healing, or walking the red road on our healing journey.

Living the good life is essential for balance and harmony.

National Aboriginal Addictions Awareness Week began in the northern community of Kugluktuk 22 years ago.

Now thousands of Aboriginal people across Canada are celebrating healthy addiction free lifestyles. In 2010, more than 700 community activities were held across Canada.

NAAAW celebrations help give hope to Aboriginal communities by celebrating the good in our people and our communities and the strength we have to make changes.

NAAAW is a chance for our communities, bands and First Nation organizations to celebrate our people who have faced their addiction and won.

Drinking, drugs, gambling and smoking have taken their toll on aboriginal health, but many people and communities are taking action.

Many Aboriginal people have beat their addictions and have made changes in their lives by returning to their culture, following their spiritual paths and helping others to find their way out of addiction.

Tobacco misuse, the number one cause of death and health issues in our communities, has sometimes been overlooked due to a focus on the devastation caused by drugs and alcohol.

However, things are changing and many aboriginal communities are now including overcoming tobacco addiction in their NAAAW celebrations.

Community role models and family members lead by example and can influence others in their community when they conquer their addictions and make changes in their lives.

When a family member quits smoking, other family members tend to follow. If parents do not smoke or quit smoking their children have a much better chance of never taking up smoking.

Nothing speaks louder than people walking the talk. NAAAW celebrates a healthy lifestyle not the lifestyle of addiction.

Living a life free from addictions has healed individuals and families, giving them the freedom to enjoy what once was their right as healthy Native people.

For information on NAAAW events in your area check with your local Aboriginal organization.

 

Just Posted

Parents and caregivers in Golden can become an ‘askable adult’ for sexual health

When you were young, did you feel comfortable asking the big questions… Continue reading

Some of Golden’s top stories in a Mountain Minute

Your Mountain Minute for April 18

TSB makes two safety advisories in probe of fatal train derailment near Field

The train derailment killed three crew members on board

There are many ways to be a sustainable consumer in Golden

Many people are coming up with ways to connect businesses and consumers… Continue reading

Fruitvale man identified in fatal zipline accident in Thailand

Spencer Donaldson, 25, was from Fruitvale, B.C., the city’s mayor has confirmed

VIDEO: Driver in bizarre hit-and-run at B.C. car dealership turns herself in

Police believe alcohol was a factor in incident causing estimated $15,000 in damages

‘B.C. cannot wait for action’: Top doctor urges province to decriminalize illicit drugs

Dr. Bonnie Henry says current approach in ‘war on drugs’ has criminalized and stigmatized drug users

B.C. woman, 76, challenges alcohol-screening laws after failing to give breath sample

Norma McLeod was unable to provide a sample because of her medical conditions

New report on 2017 wildfires calls for better coordination with B.C. First Nations

Tsilhqot’in National Government documents 2017 disaster and lists 33 calls to action

B.C. youth coach banned amid sexual harassment, bullying scandal: Water Polo Canada

Justin Mitchell can’t take part in Water Polo Canada events or clubs

Wilson-Raybould: Feds want to just ‘manage the problem’ of Indigenous Peoples

Former federal justice minister speaks at First Nations Justice Council meeting in B.C.

Boating incident claims life on East Kootenay lake

A young man has died after a canoe overturned in Moyie Lake early Tuesday morning

Female real estate agents warned of suspicious man in Metro Vancouver

The man requests to see homes alone with the female agent, police say

Can you put your phone down for Mother’s Day?

#DiningMode campaign encourages people to leave the phone alone while eating

Most Read