Mitakuye Oyasin is a well-known Lakota phrase that means “we are all related.” This phrase is often used to
signify the Lakota people’s appreciation for and relationship with the environment (Unci Maka or Grandmother
Earth). This Native American Research Centers for Health (NARCH) XII program application, entitled Lakota
Center for Health Research, describes a body of research and activities that are designed to exemplify this
concept in both practical and innovative ways. Specifically, the program of research and activities proposed
herein serves to broaden and deepen our examination of health inequities experienced by our three Lakota Tribal
partners and the Rapid City Indian community by
1.) Partnering with Dr. Tami Sullivan of Yale School of Medicine, an expert on intimate partner violence (IPV),
in pilot testing a culturally tailored, trauma-informed, smoking cessation trial for Norther Plains Tribal
women who have experienced IPV in Rapid City, SD;
2.) Increasing the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe’s environmental surveillance capacity in very important ways,
including implementing a newly developed community wastewater treatment testing process for SARS-
CoV-2 RNA coupled with biogenome sequencing;
3.) Strengthening our Lakota Center for Health Research program project efforts by developing and
implementing an evaluation approach with Dr. Samantha Sabo of Northern Arizona University; and
4.) Continuing to promote a forward-thinking, strategic, synergistic, holistic research direction among the
partners of our growing NARCH collaborative.
The objectives of this proposed NARCH XII program project, if accomplished, will improve the wellness of a
group of most underserved Native women who have experienced intimate partner violence; improve the capacity
of the innovative Native BioData Consortium lab and biorepository; and improve the processes and capacity of
our long-running NARCH-supported Lakota Center for Health Research.
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