A/Z Theme - Sights and sites of Arizona
N - Native American
This is a bit of a stretch for the letter "N" but I think it will work (LOL). Hubby got a job working at the Gila River Health Care at Hu Hu Kam Memorial Hospital in Sacaton, Arizona, which is about 45 minutes away from Phoenix.
From what I understand that has been gathered by hubby is that the Gila River Indian Community (tribe) grew lots of plants and agriculture because a river ran through its area. When pioneers would travel across country, they would often stop there at the river to refresh themselves and their livestock.
After the gold rush in California fizzled out, those that went there looking for fortune remembered the fertile land in Arizona by the Gila River. They returned there and dammed the water upstream from the tribe causing the river to no longer flow through their land.
A famine hit. Over the next ensuing years, 20,000 of the tribe died. The US government did come in through the military and provided food for them. Fried bread, while many might think is an Indian food, was made out of necessity due to the provisions left by the government of flour, etc. During this time, because of a change in diet, lots of Native Americans developed diabetes and became overweight.
Somewhere else down the line, they decided to sue the government for building of the dam and won the lawsuit. It was a 112 year lawsuit. They were granted 51% of water rights. They could have chosen the Gila River, but they chose the Colorado River. They could have sold the water to other states for a very high profit, but they decided to keep the water in Arizona because their people were still there. They get the revenue for that 51% of water usage from water companies.
The Gila River Indian Community is very proactive in health maintenance and keeping the members of their community out of the hospital. They consider it a failure if someone has to be hospitalized, so they promote health, getting to doctor appointments, etc. They have a fleet of vehicles that will go and pick up people to make sure they follow through with testing, doctors' appointments, etc.
Not all the employees that work there are members of the community. I went down with hubby when he interviewed and stayed in the cafeteria while he was interviewing with the administration, etc. I saw all nationalities represented there.
Of course the Gila River Indian Community also has a casino.
There is so much more about them that I hope to share in subsequent posts after the challenge.
And to wrap up like I usually do with a question, do you have Native American casinos in your area? Obviously we do, but also had them in Prescott and parts of Southern California we lived in.