DBMHS hosts Tour de Sih Hasin Bike Ride Mid-Stop mental wellness event

DILKON, Ariz. – To promote suicide awareness and prevention, the Navajo Nation Division of Behavioral & Mental Health Service (DBMHS) partnered with the Tour de Sih Hasin Bike Ride to host the Mid-Stop Mental Health & Wellness Event at the Dilkon Outpatient Treatment Center on Thursday, July 11. The event included presentations and activities to bring suicide awareness and prevention information to local communities and marked the halfway-point for the weeklong, 200-mile bike ride.

Thursday morning kicked-off with dozens of riders, riding-in from Teesto Chapter to the Dilkon DBMHS Outpatient Treatment Center. The riders were welcomed by a crowd of supportive families, division staff, and volunteers who have been working with the Winslow Indian Health Care Center and Tour de Sih Hasin coordinator, Claudia Jackson. Ms. Jackson coordinated with various groups over the past several months to organize and promote the annual bike ride.

“This year we decided we wanted to focus on mental health. We realized that riding through heat and riding through the different elements; it boosts mental awareness in our riders, and [gives them] strength,” she explained. “We went to DBMHS and asked them ‘can you come help us on this ride?’ and they were so willing and we’re so thankful that they joined the ride, because they have a huge message as well.”

DBMHS offered riders encouragement and empowerment through their welcome messages and presentation topics. Information about how the Division promotes balance and harmony through inward healing, personal growth and knowledge of the ‘Diné Lifeway,’ and about the comprehensive behavioral and mental health services available to Native Families was provided.

The Mid-Stop event also included a health fair, awareness and prevention presentations by the Building Communities of Hope initiative, and lunch and snacks provided to the attendees. The afternoon consisted of talking circles and closed with a ‘power of the mind’ presentation. After the event concluded DBMHS traditional practitioners held a traditional sweat for the boys and men.

Overall the event was well received, and Ms. Jackson showed great appreciation to DBMHS for their support to the riders by hosting the Mid-Stop event. “We have never had this much support in the [seven] years we’ve done this ride,” she told attendees. “They just jumped on board and said, ‘we’ll be there, we’ll support you.’ I am so appreciative.”

For more information about programs and services provided by the Division of Behavioral & Mental Health Services, visit nnbdmhs.org. For more information about the Tour de Sih Hasin Bike Ride, visit sihhasinbikeride.com.