Some of this week’s highlights:

  • Culture of Recovery: How the Rural Providers’ Conference brings grassroots healing to Alaska Native communities struggling with drug and alcohol addiction.
  • Northway Takes a Stand: How the tiny Canadian border community of Northway said no to meth and drove the message home.
  • Conversation with Doug and Amy Modig: A visit with two longtime Alaska Native sobriety activists, who believe strong cultural values can help prevent and heal addiction.   

The Rural Providers’ Conference began 34 years ago – a grassroots Alaska Native Sobriety movement to bring hope and change to communities in which few treatment services were available. It was founded on the belief that Native culture has an important role to play in fighting addiction.

The vision: to bring counselors, therapist and traditional healers together once a year to rededicate themselves to recovery. Those in search of sobriety were also welcome.

As many of those involved gained an upper hand on addiction, the gathering has also become a celebration of sobriety.

The Rural Providers' Conference moves every two years to get different perspectives on fighting addiction. This year, the gathering was held in Tanacross – a community in the Upper Tanana region near Tok.  

So far, the focus in Tanacross has been on historical and intergenerational trauma – how rapid change and Western culture created a cumulative suffering from emotional and psychological wounds carried across generations.

This week on Frontiers, we look at the RPC’s continuing mission of self-help.


Next week we’ll continue the dialogue with a focus on Tanacross and its struggles with historical trauma.

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