On the Yurok reservation some 200 miles northeast of Redding, tribal members are caring for one another with a combination of messaging, food boxes, and traditional prayer. Tribal chair Joseph James declared a state of emergency in March and closed the reservation to visitors. So far, there have been no confirmed cases of the coronavirus on the Yurok Reservation.
One of the key ways the tribe is fending off coronavirus transmission is through culturally relevant public health messaging, says Virginia Hedrick, who directs the California Consortium for Urban Indian Health and was born and raised on the Yurok reservation.
That means using "targeted messaging that includes indigenous faces, indigenous colors, and baskets and things that relate to us," she said.
The tribe is providing food boxes to elders on and off the reservation, and recently scheduled a traditional dance, with people participating from their homes.
"It was a prayer not just for us," James said. "It was prayer for everybody across the world in combating and pushing back this COVID-19 virus."