Indigenous Mental Health and Wellbeing: A Foundation for Understanding and Supporting Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Practice in Alaska

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Training Details

Event Dates and Timeframe
11 am - 1 pm AKST
Wednesday, June 1, 2022
Location and Delivery Method
Delivery Method
Video Conferencing
Cost Range
$45.00 to $60.00 (depending on options)

Host And Instructor

Alaska Association of Infant & Early Childhood Mental Health (AK-AIMH)
Dr. LaVerne Xilegg Demientieff
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Contact Hours: 2.00
C.E. Credit for AK-AIMH Endorsement: 2.00

Training Overview Description

This workshop is aimed at building awareness and understanding about the impact culture has on the well-being and quality of life of Indigenous people. Examples of resilience and wellness are rooted in all cultures and communities across Alaska. We can learn a lot from the wisdom and traditions of these diverse cultures that incorporate connection, belonging, and healing into community practices.

Indigenous people learn traditional values and how to be in relationship with the physical and spirit world through the cultural practices modeled by our Elders, parents, and community leaders and seeds of wellness are rooted within us. A relational identity is necessary for the healthy development of Indigenous children, families, and communities because knowing who you are and where you come from is at the core of one's sovereign and relational being and provides strength and resilience to many of life's challenges.


  1. Participants will increase their understanding of the role of culture as it relates to well-being.
  2. Participants will gain an understanding of the role of traditional wellness strategies in the healing/coping process.
  3. Participants will strengthen their understanding of relationality as it connects to the mental health of children, families, and communities.
  4. Participants will be introduced to tools and resources to support mental health and wellbeing practices.
  5. Participants will learn about historical and complex trauma and the impact on individuals, families, and communities.

Meet Your Instructor

Dr. LaVerne Xilegg Demientieff is Deg Xit’an (Dene) and her family and ancestors are from the area of Holy Cross and Anvik, Alaska. She grew up in Nenana and Anchorage and at her family’s fishcamp on the Yukon river. She is an Associate Professor of Social Work at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, where she has taught since 2006. LaVerne’s research and practice areas focus on individual, community, and organizational wellness and healing utilizing a wholistic and multi-level framework grounded in Indigenous knowledge and ways of being.

Competencies & Endorsement

This training will cover the following competencies required for Endorsement for Culturally Sensitive, Relationship-Focused Practice Promoting Infant Mental Health®:

  • Theoretical Foundations: Cultural Humility
  • Reflection: Contemplation

AK-AIMH administers the Endorsement® to recognize the attainment of professional competencies in working with children 0-5. For more information about the Endorsement®, please visit our website.

Event-specific Details

The Alaska Association of Infant & Early Childhood Mental Health (AK-AIMH) has listed this training for the benefit of Alaska's professionals as part of our initiative Project Compass: Leading the Way to Infant & Early Childhood Mental Health Workforce Development. Project Compass is funded by AK-AIMH members and donors, the Alaska Children's Trust, and the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority. Visit Project Compass to learn more!

Registration Information

Registration closes on May 30, 2022. Last day for full refund is May 31, 2022. Please direct any questions to

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