Elizabeth Doney Havre Daily News email@example.com
A Native American comedian who has made a career out of using humor and motivational speaking as a means to help fellow Native Americans heal and deal with the past will be in north-central Montana Tuesday. J. R. Redwater, a member of the Standing Rock Nation, will be speaking to junior high and high school students as well as the community Tuesday at Box Elder and Rocky Boy's Indian Reservation. The first presentation will begin at 9 a.m. at the Box Elder school. The second presentation will be held at 1:30 p.m. at the Rocky Boy school with topics that aim to prevent and inform about alcohol, drug and tobacco abuse. Community members, who were informed of the opportunity to hear "Pow-wow Comedy" through mail, are invited to attend a humorous presentation at the Rocky Boy Health Fair at 3:30 p.m. at the Wellness Center. The presentation held at the Wellness Center is open to the public and surrounding communities as well. The Health Fair will be held from 1 to 4:30 p.m. at the Wellness Center and will host free screening, healthy activities and information from all health programs. Topics Redwater will address with community members at the Health Fair include Native American culture, drums, leadership, possibility thinking, and alcohol, drug and sacred tobacco abuse. "I want people to be able to heal from the inside out and to deal with their past," Redwater said. "In order to have strong healthy families and leave the legacy of love and happiness. Through laughter, I believe this is possible." Redwater's journey to Rocky Boy's Indian Reservation is made possible through the Rocky Boy Public Health and the Department of Public Health and Human Services under an HIV Prevention state grant in hopes that those who attend will adopt positive behavior change. "J.R. Redwater talks about risky lifestyles and changing behavior, so he fit in with our HIV prevention grant requirements that desire behavior change and risk reduction," said Sandra Friede, Rocky Boy public health nurse. "Laughter is healing and makes life's difficulties easier to get through. J.R.'s own life challenges. We hope that he can reach those in the audience and spur them into making behavior changes." For more information, contact Friede at 395-4486.