404 NHI – Native Health Initiative

What is Loving Service

Loving service is NHI's method for addressing inequities, and serves as our primary funding source.
“Loving service is giving without expecting anything in return.”

Why do we choose loving service: 1) It is a return to an Indigenous currency, one where money is not central, but instead one's sincerity and goodness toward others is most valued. 2) It inspires a human-to-human element to our work, a communal ethic that minimizes the ego and maximizes all of the qualities we hope to amplify in our partnership (caring for one another, kindness, honesty, trust, ) 3) It builds on the strength of Indigenous communities, and helps to educate our volunteers, our partner organizations, and academic and governmental institutions about this aspect of these communities.

  • Indigenous Mentors

    young adults and elders

  • Youth Leadership

    Serving on NHI Leadership

  • NHI Coordinators

    10 Volunteer/Non-paid

  • NHI Advisory Board Members

    4 volunteer/non-paid


click on photo to find out more
  • Scholarship and Grants

    Youth Leading the Way Grant

    ** Application DUE: one-going submissions

    Healing Directions Grant

    ** Application DUE: one-going submissions

    Hip-Hop and Health Grant

    ** Application DUE: one-going submissions

    Education is Ceremony Scholarship 2017-2018

    ** Application DUE: June 1st, 2017





    Scholarship and Grants

    Are you H.O.T. enough? We think you are!
    What is H.O.T.: H.O.T. (Healers Of Tomorrow) is an 8 month health career exploration program for underrepresented high school youth in New Mexico. We provide one-on-one mentoring opportunities with health professional students, presentations by a variety of healers, shadowing experiences, community involvement through leadership development, and college preparation.
    Who: All high school students in Albuquerque and the surrounding area are welcome to apply. Health professionals, health profession students, or those seeking a career as a healer are encouraged to become mentors.
    When: 10 am to 1 pm the 2nd and 4th Saturday of every month starting September 23, 2017 to May 2018 @ the Native American Community Academy located in the UNM School of Law building on North Campus.
    Cost: FREE!
    Application deadline: September 2, 2018
    Applications and further details about the program can be found in the documents below. Check out what our awesome 2017 graduates accomplished!
    If you have any questions please contact us at nhi.healersoftomorrow@gmail.com
    Paper Applications:
    Google Form Application Links:


  • Breathe Tradition, Not Addiction Campaign

    Since NHI’s inception, the reclaiming of traditional, ceremonial, medicinal, and sacred use of tobacco has been a large part of our work. For too long, commercial tobacco companies have expoited Indigenous images and names to sell their toxic tobacco and it is time that we take back tobacco to its proper place as plants of spiritual power with the power to heal,  not as a cancer-causing agent that is smoked and chewed for recreation.

       Highlights of our Campaign

    * “Breathe Tradition, Not Addiction” educational sessions with Indigenous youth in in NC and NM

    * Supporting the Coharie Smoke Free Hawks in their mission to promote use of traditional tobacco and prevent the use of commercial tobacco in their community

    * Building a grassroots coalition to stand in opposition to, and fight for the removal of, the Lumbee cigarette

    Decolonize Tobacco – Breathe Tradition, Not Addiction t-shirts. Created by SABA Wear (Stop Assimilating By Adapting) in conjunction with NHI, these shirts are available for purchase. $15 gets you a shirt, and orders of 20 or more are $13 per shirt. 100% of the proceeds will go to fund Youth Leading the Way project grants. Contact us if you would like to purchase shirts!


    Breathe Tradition, Not Addiction Campaign
  • Internship Opportunities


    There are three (3) opportunities for Loving-Service (the human-to-human element of wanting to serve others):

    Fall 2017/Spring 2018 Internship – for youth and college students interested in working with the Native Health Initiative programs.   ** Application will soon be available**

    2018 Summer Health Justice Internship – a 5-week internship opportunity that allows you to work the urban and rural Indigenous communities, on community-driven health projects, programs, or activities.** Application will soon be available**

    2018 Indigenous Health Leadership Institute – a 3-day Indigenous Immersion, that is traveling throughout urban/rural Indigenous communities and learning about various Indigenous Health perspectives. ** Application will soon be available**


    Internship Opportunities
  • Education is Ceremony College Scholarships

    Purpose of the Scholarship: Assist Indigenous women and men of all ages to pursue their dreams through the ceremony of higher education.

    Education as a way of Ceremony: In the same way that one can go through a traditional ceremony of purification, enlightenment and healing, we see higher education as a modern-day ceremony offering the same rewards. Traditional ceremonies require, and help nurture, one’s discipline, patience, gratitude; these same attributes are required and increased through the Ceremony of higher education.

    Scholarship Amount: Up to ten (10) scholarships are available of $1000.00 and will be awarded for the 2017-2018 academic year. The scholarships will be paid directly to you or your educational institution, to cover tuition expenses.

    2015-2016 Scholarship Recipients:

    • Aaron Lee
    • Troy Black Dog
    • Shelby Yazzie

    2015-2016 Scholarship Recipients:

    • Breanna Yazzie
    • Kayla Murphy
    • Lily Richardson

    2014-2015 Scholarship Recipients:

    • Nicholas Felipe
    • Shannon Harlan
    • Paul Phillips

    2013-2014 Scholarship Recipients:

    • Kelvin Dan
    • Alisia Serrano
    • Rachel Sourjohn
    • Raquel Redshirt

    2012-2013 Scholarship Recipients:

    • Shawna Nelson
    • Shasity Tsosie
    • Justine Correa
    • Kristi Martin

    What you_should_know-NHI_2010.221231572016-2017_Education_is_Ceremony_Scholarship.7101030

     ** Application Deadline: June 1st, 2017

    FORMS: 2017-2018 Education is Ceremony Scholarship and 2017-18-NHI-Financial-Need-Analysis-Form

    Submit Applications to NHI via paper mail: Post Office Box 26374, Albuquerque, NM 87125

    Or by email to:shannon@lovingservice.us



    Education is Ceremony College Scholarships
  • Summer Health Justice Internships

    2017 Summer Health Justice Internships

    We sincerely hope you will consider applying for our Summer 2014 internship to be hosted by NHI-NM/AZ (volunteers will serve in either NM or AZ for 5-weeks).

    This a unique internship program in many respects:

    1) It is run by Tribes and health professions students

    2) The health projects are created and organized by the Tribal communities

    3) There is minimal monetary funding that is used to run the internships. For instance, in the summer of 2008, there were 4,750 hours of “loving service” poured into the summer’s work, while only $3000 dollars was used by NHI to fund the work. In 2009, 6,000 total hours and less than $2,000!

     4) Lots of fun, sharing of cultures!

    For more information on this summer’s internships, What you_should_know-NHI_2010.22123157

    DOWNLOAD Application 2017 SHJI Application and submit, by March 5th, 2017

    If you have further questions, please contact one of the NHI Coordinators.


    We are also happy to put you in touch with past NHI summer interns who can share their experience with you.

    Summer Health Justice Internships
  • Running Medicine

    Join us for our Fall Season + Youth Cross Country!

    Aug. 14th,  2017 – Nov. 4th, 2017

    When/Where: Tuesdays and Thursdays at UNM North Golf Course @ 6pm on Saturdays @ 8am at Bosque School

    Who: All ages and fitness levels welcome. We have walkers and runners of all ages and speeds!

    Youth Cross Country: We will compete as a USATF club this fall, and expect to have 50+ runners, building on our success from fall 2016

    Cost: $15 for the season, which includes a sweet RM shirt!      ***Registration Link Coming Soon**

    For more info: visit our Facebook page, call(505.340.5658) or send an email to runningmedicineabq@gmail.com 

    Learn More About Us:

    NPR story: http://kunm.org/post/running-club-step-right-direction

    Running Medicine video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LaFH7n46xZ8

    RunningMed Fall Pic

    Who we are:
    Running Medicine is based on the understanding that running and exercise is a beautiful and potent medicine for mind, body, and spirit. Formed as a program of the Native Health Initiative (NHI), our vision is to create a culture of wellness through a supportive, loving community.

    Our core values for RM:
    -Inclusive to all people, all fitness and ability levels

    -Provide high quality, individualized coaching to all participants at minimal cost
    -Loving community where everyone supports each other’s wellness
    -Intergenerational – youth, elders and everyone in between!
    -Emphasize the elements of “fun” and “play” in all that we do together
    -Cultural, mental and spiritual aspects of running/walking will be emphasized
    -Sustainability – our goal is zero waste and leave no trace
    -Outreach to local communities and efforts to create cultures of wellness

    Running Medicine
  • IHLI – Indigenous Health Leadership Institute

    2017 IHLI Indigenous Health Leadership Institute

    March 31 – April 2, 2017 (Friday- Sunday)

    Join us for an exciting 3 days in sunny New Mexico where you will

    • learn about American Indian and Indigenous perspectives on health from community leaders, traditional healers, political activists, and health professionals
    • visit two local American Indian Tribes and talk with their elders, youth, and community leaders
    • participate in a community asset mapping exercise alongside community leaders as a unique form of community service
    • have time to focus on developing/improving a project that addresses injustices in health in your home communities
    • enjoy yourself, laugh lots, and learn some Navajo language!
    • join health professions students from diverse disciplines from across the country
    • be a part of the first-ever Indigenous health institute for health professions students in the United States!

    Background to IHLI

    Indigenous populations in the United States, ranging from the 800+ American Indian Tribes to less defined indigenous populations from Mexico, Latin America, South America and across the world, have unique cultures, perspectives on health, and health needs. This population lives sicker and dies younger than the general U.S. population, a trend seen worldwide with indigenous populations. Two core questions arise from this, which will serve as the foundation for IHLI:

    • Why is this?
    • What can we do about and not only change this situation, but to eliminate inequities in health among Indigenous and other marginalized populations

    2017 IHLI Application – DUE February 5th, 2017

    What Attendees can expect:

    – Once accepted, attendees will receive a 4-week primer on Indigenous culture and health to help them prepare for IHLI.

    – We will also work with attendees to develop ideas for potential projects that address injustices in health in the weeks prior to IHLI.

    – Once here in New Mexico (aka Land of Enchantment), you will be treated with “loving service” – home-cooked meals, host families/students, and community and student volunteers dedicated to making this a great weekend for you!

    – The entirety of IHLI will take place in community sites, including American Indian reservations, giving attendees a unique perspective from which to learn about Indigenous health.

    IHLI – Indigenous Health Leadership Institute
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