Cocaine Addiction Treatment Centers North Pole AK

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Fairbanks Native Association
Ralph Perdue Center
3100 South Cushman Street, Suite 100,
Fairbanks, AK99701
(907) 452-6251x6411
www.fairbanksnative.org

Intake Phone Numbers:
(907) 452-6251x6400

Services Offered: Substance abuse treatment

Residency: Residential long-term treatment (more than 30 days), Outpatient

Payment Accepted: Self payment, Medicaid, Medicare, Private health insurance, Military insurance (e.g., VA,TRICARE)

Specializing in DUI/DWI offenders

For thousands of years Alaska’s first people, jointly called Alaska Natives, made their livelihood as subsistence hunters and fishers (Alaska’s History: The People, Land and Events of the North Country, 1993). In Alaska’s interior region the subsistence traditions of our ancestors were forever changed by the first successful expedition into the Interior by Lt. Henry Allen in 1885 and the discovery of gold in the Tanana Valley surrounding Fairbanks. The discovery of gold brought thousands of non-Native people to the area and the Alaska Native traditional subsistence lifestyle began to give way to one marked by permanent villages, which today rely in large part on a cash economy.

The increasing reliance of these villages on the cash economy has forced many Alaska Natives to leave their ancestral homelands for Alaska’s urban areas, including Fairbanks, to seek employment. In 1960, only 12% of Alaska Natives lived in urban areas. By 1990 the percent of Alaska Natives living in urban areas increased to 44%. Population changes between 1980 and 1990 reflect the highest rate of Native in-migration to urban centers. In 1990, for instance, 11% of the population of the Yukon-Koyukuk Census Area (Alaska’s Interior) migrated to other parts of Alaska (Alaska Department of Labor, 1994).

The experiences of the first Alaska Natives to move to the city of Fairbanks were marked by discrimination. Many Alaska Native men serving in the United States Army during World War II at Ladd Airfield Base near Fairbanks were barred from Fairbanks stores, hotels, restaurants, and bars. At that time “No Indians” signs and attitudes were an integral part of the Alaska Native experience in urban areas.

By the mid-1960s most of the signs had come down, but Alaska Natives continued to find that they were welcome in few public places. “Even people who didn’t drink had no place to go except the bars,” said Poldine Carlo, Athabascan Native Elder and one of FNA’s charter members, when asked why she started FNA. “Because there was nowhere else for them to go, we started inviting people over to our house. For two or three winters, we even had different village mushers and their dogs staying here in the woods behind our house.”

It was these experiences that led Poldine Carlo and others, including her husband Bill and Ralph Perdue, Morris Thompson, Margie Wright, John Sackett, and Max Huhndorf to organize an association for urban Alaska Natives. While the Civil Rights Movement was shaking the nation, Alaska Natives in Fairbanks started meeting around Poldine’s kitchen table to design an association that would bring Alaska Native people living in Fairbanks together; an association that would give them a sense of belonging where there was none; an association that would speak on behalf of Alaska Natives, who had little political clout; and an association that would meet their cultural, social, and economic needs.

In 1967 FNA was incorporated as a nonprofit under the laws of the State of Alaska. Membership then as it is now was open to Alaska Natives and American Indians of one-quarter blood or greater who once a year elect a nine-person board of directors. Today FNA is a powerful and influential Native American voice in Alaska. Over the years our organization has changed public policies that were discriminatory to our people and our programs have helped countless people find new jobs, maintain sobriety, celebrate their culture, and receive an education.

As FNA continues to build a stronger community, we will hold true to our mission “to provide quality services in a professional manner for our membership and the greater Fairbanks community.”

The Difference Is We Knew Better: Interview With a Cocaine Addict - Addicted

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The Difference Is We Knew Better: Interview With a Cocaine Addict

Jeanne Sparks-Carreker

Friday, September 14, 2007 Ever wonder what it is like to live every second of every day with a craving for a substance which has not only destroyed your life, but which has destroyed the lives of those around you, taken away everyone's trust in you, and labeled you with a title that includes you in the same categories as the lowest members of society?

Brenda Manning of Birmingham, Alabama can relate. Her family has disowned her, the business which once held her as a top, valued employee, and which gave her employee of the month plaques three times in two years finally dismissed her. She has been evicted from the apartment she lived in with her children, and just this past November, she lost custody of her twelve year old daughter by a decision within the Family Court System of Jefferson County.

She now lives in a friend's home which has no power or water service because the bills have not been paid by the eight adult residents. Rather, any money accumulated has been used to purchase cocaine. Brenda is a 42 year old Caucasian female, and is noticeably restless as she sits down on the couch in the small, dirty livingroom. Our surroundings seem to lack everything, as if all the valuables and appliances that once sat in this small, old house has been used to barter another hit of cocaine.

JSC: When did you first start using drugs?

BRENDA: I started smoking pot when I was in junior high. I guess I was about twelve or thirteen. I got in with the wrong crowd, you know what I mean.

JSC: Did you finish school?

BRENDA: No, I dropped out when I was sixteen. I really stopped going when I was about fourteen. I just dodged the truancy people. They gave up after a while. Well, when we were kids, anyways.

JSC: What was your home life like back then, Brenda?

BRENDA: My mama worked a lot, I guess. I didn't know my father too good. She had too much to do and couldn't keep up with me, really. It was alright, but I didn't have anyone telling me what to do too much, so I got to do what I wanted.

JSC: When did you decide to try harder drugs?

BRENDA: I guess I was around eighteen, at a party, you know, the whole peer-pressure thing happening. I had been scared of the harder stuff, but then when I tried it, it didn't kill me. I liked it too much, too.

JSC: What drug was it that you tried at the party?

BRENDA: There were people free-basing cocaine. I knew I was hooked the first few seconds after I took a hit. It's owned me every since.

Two males had entered the livingroom from a far bedroom, and as Brenda commented on the cocaine "owning" her, they nodded in understanding, then made their way to another room to my left.

JSC: When did you have children?

BRENDA: I got pregnant with my first kid when I was twenty-two. I was workin' the streets to make money, truck stops and all. She went to live with my mother when I had her cause I didn't think I ...

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