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HUD Grants Help Oregon Tribes With Community Wellness Initiatives

Michelle Alaimo, www.granderonde.org

Three Oregon Indian tribes have received more than a million dollars from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.  As KLCC’s Brian Bull reports, it’s part of a larger award that’s to benefit tribes nationwide.

Kelly Rowe is Executive Director of Health Services for the Confederated Tribes of the Grande Ronde.  She says they’ve received half a million dollars to construct a 1900-square foot addition to their health and wellness center.

“Since 2016, we’ve doubled our size for alcohol and drug abuse support groups," Rowe tells KLCC.  "And we’ve come up against not having enough larger space to do additional groups.  We want to protect people’s privacy and confidentiality, and so we’re excited because this is an opportunity to do that.” 

Rowe adds 71 percent of tribal members surveyed in 2015 said drug abuse was their greatest concern for public safety. 

The Burns Paiute Tribe got $340,000 that’ll be used for low-rent housing.  The Klamath Tribes got $275,000 to help build a community fitness center.

Altogether, 77 tribal organizations received more than $55 million from HUD’s Indian Community Development Block Grant Program. 

Copyright 2017, KLCC.

Brian Bull is an assistant professor of journalism at the University of Oregon, and remains a contributor to the KLCC news department. He began working with KLCC in June 2016.   In his 27+ years as a public media journalist, he's worked at NPR, Twin Cities Public Television, South Dakota Public Broadcasting, Wisconsin Public Radio, and ideastream in Cleveland. His reporting has netted dozens of accolades, including four national Edward R. Murrow Awards (22 regional),  the Ohio Associated Press' Best Reporter Award, Best Radio Reporter from  the Native American Journalists Association, and the PRNDI/NEFE Award for Excellence in Consumer Finance Reporting.
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