K’é Project (Navaho Nation)
Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Utah
The driving force of the K’e Project is the reinstitution of cultural and social values and principles rooted in k’e, the traditional system of care. The underlying philosophy is the defining of roles, relationships, and behaviors between the child, family, community, and with an individual’s spiritual and natural environments. The Project’s primary goal is to strengthen and empower children and families through the traditional principles and values expressed through K’e. The other key goals are to develop an interagency structure for the seven project sites, to coordinate the participation of spiritual counselors into the service delivery framework, to empower parents, and to evaluate the effectiveness of the Project. The K’e Project is being implemented from service centers in seven regions of the Navajo Nation: Tuba City, Fort Defiance, Chinle, and Dilkon in Arizona and Crownpoint, Shiprock and Gallup in New Mexico.
The target population for the Project is children and youth between the ages of 0 and 22 years old living in the seven regions mentioned above and having serious emotional disturbances, with a special emphasis on victims of sexual abuse and neglect. Throughout the Nation, children are served by the six regional service sites. Approximately two thirds of the Navajo population resides in Arizona and one third lives in New Mexico, with a much smaller proportion of the population living in Utah. In 1998, over 100 families were currently served by the Project. Each of the regional sites serves an average of 20 families at any given time. This number has remained consistent over time. Families are referred to the Project from a variety of sources, including schools, hospitals and residential treatment facilities, Social Services, IHS, community-based organizations, and judicial services.