Inspiring Change: Native American Heroes in Mental Health Equity

Every November, we observe Native American Heritage Month, a time to recognize and celebrate the rich and diverse cultures, traditions, and contributions of Native Americans. This month offers an opportunity for all Americans to reflect on the enduring legacy of indigenous people. At Crisis Text Line, we are honoring Native American changemakers who help raise awareness about mental health challenges they face within their communities and how they continue to fight against stigma.

We R Native is a comprehensive health resource for Native youth, by Native youth, providing content and stories about the topics that matter most to them. The nonprofit organization strives to promote holistic health and positive growth for its local communities and nation at large.

“We can change our world. Help spread positive vibes and create positive change in your communities.”  –  We R Native

Thank you We R Native for making a huge impact within the lives of Native youth by offering critical multimedia health resources to support their mental health.

Paulina Alexis, an Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation member, has become a rising star with her role on Reservation Dogs and is bringing awareness and representation to Indigenous Pride. She has openly discussed her mental health journey and how she finds support and inspiration from the women in her community and comfort from her horses and comedy. 

“The suicide rate in our Native youth is really bad. Within the past year, I’ve lost three of my close bros to suicide, and I just want to make people feel like they matter, so that doesn’t happen.” –Paulina Alexis

Paulina –  thank you for empowering your community to help them find ways to focus on their self-care and spiritual well-being.

Jazmine Wildcat is a member of the Northern Arapaho Tribe who has continuously used her voice to advocate for Native communities and their mental health and well-being. Growing up on the Wind River Reservation, Jazmine witnessed the atrocities that Native women faced firsthand. She found that activism helped her as a coping mechanism and continues to encourage the youth within her community to also use activism and volunteering as an avenue to stay mentally healthy. Last year, she was invited to the White House as one of the panelists for the “Mental Health Youth Action Forum.” She also founded a program called the Nii’iini Project – Nii’iini means “things are good” in the Arapaho language.

“I’ve been to quite a lot of funerals just in my four years of high school, so it’s a very important topic, and that’s why I want to speak on mental health because I want to be the person I wish I had in high school.” -Jazmine Wildcat

You are a true mental health changemaker Jazmine by helping to build a more inclusive, compassionate and healthy society.

Elisha Bouchard, one of our dedicated volunteer Crisis Counselors, is currently a graduate student studying clinical mental health counseling, and has been volunteering since 2020. She first became interested in mental health when she realized that everyone around her in college was dealing with some form of a mental health struggle, and wanted to learn how she could help them. She is truly happy that she can make a difference in someone else’s life, and volunteering has made a huge difference in her life as well. Check out her mental health routine video here!

“Mental health care is for everyone, not just someone with a diagnosis..” – Elisha Bouchard

First of all, thank you Elisha for being one of our amazing volunteers and for helping individuals in need as a crisis counselor.


Looking to make a difference? Interested in supporting people in need? Join Crisis Text Line’s community of volunteer Crisis Counselors today!

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