This manual has been prepared to help descendants of the original societies of North America with their efforts to overcome problems with beverage alcohol abuse. It is intended to assist in initiating, organizing and operating a guided self-help group dedicated to promoting a healthy, sober lifestyle. The contents of the manual reflect knowledge gained from both vigorous research and ideas and strategies that are either drawn from or intentionally consistent with the traditional spirituality and values of the Indigenous peoples of North America.
Circle Fellowship is a unique community guide and self-help manual. It is prepared for Native North American people who are both looking for a more traditional way of making better choices and for strategies soundly based in evaluation research. When used along with Traditional Tipi Teachings and the guidance of the Medicine Wheel, it can provide the basis for members of our communities to rebuild and regain the inner strength that is essential for all humans to have a balanced, fulfilling life. The misconception that all people who drink are or will become alcoholics can now be challenged with well grounded research. This community organization guide and self-help manual is a much needed alternative to the conventional disease model approach. Dr. Thatcher and Dr. Knowles have committed countless hours in preparing this manual for community groups and the everyday person to use with ease. It is an extremely valuable resource for all who want to help create a positive and sustainable change in themselves and in the community. Ekosi. Linda G. Greyeyes Member of Muskeg Lake Cree Nation Educational consultant, Saskatchewan Rivers Public School Division
Richard W. Thatcher, Ph.D., is a consulting social researcher, community health system planner and social worker based in southern Saskatchewan, Canada. He has worked primarily with Indigenous peoples for over thirty years. Fred E. Knowles, Jr., Ph.D., is a professor within the Sociology, Anthropology and Criminal Justice Department at Valdosta State University. He is the Chair of the Native American Studies program at VSU and an adjunct professor with the University of Tulsa, College of Law. Dr. Knowles is Creek (Mvskoke) and Cherokee (Tsalagi) and is enrolled as Eastern Creek.