Assiniboine Tribe

Returning To Roots, Indian Health Service Seeks Traditional Healers

May 26, 2020
Students applying moisture to soil in a greenhouse.
Skylar Rispen / Native News

Cheryl Morales started the medicinal garden at the Aaniiih Nakoda College demonstration farm with only four plants: yarrow, echinacea, plantain and licorice root.

After 10 years, the campus garden within the Fort Belknap reservation in northern Montana now holds more than 60 species that take up almost 30,000 square feet. Morales adds new plants annually. This year, she is testing Oregon grape root and breadroot.

The entrance to the Fort Peck Nation on highway 408 in northeastern Montana.
Olivia Reingold / Yellowstone Public Radio

An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated Alexander Smith's age as 24. He is 20. 

The Fort Peck Tribes swore in a new Tribal government Monday. Tribal members elected five newcomers to Tribal Council while upholding the current chairman.

The Seal of the Fort Belknap Reservation
Josh Burnham / Yellowstone Public Radio


The tribes on the Fort Belknap Reservation declared a state of emergency last Thursday over what the tribal president says is a suicide crisis.