NB3 Foundation is Fueled Up for the Fall

“I can smell Autumn dancing in the breeze, the sweet chill of pumpkin and crisp sunburnt leaves.” Fall is such a beautiful time of year; bright colors, crisp air and lots of activities.

In addition to our amazing fall sports programs, the NB3 Foundation is involved in several exciting new endeavors this fall. In November we are encouraging tribes, communities, organizations and families to participate in the NB3FIT WEEK: A National Week of Native Youth Health and Fitness and the Zero to 60 Challenge. Both national initiatives are designed to raise awareness and promote action on the importance of regular physical activity and the overconsumption of sugary-sweetened beverages among our Native youth. 

It is not enough to just talk about the health challenges facing our communities and families. We have to be involved in “direct-action” opportunities that supports and inspires positive behavioral changes. For example, the Zero to 60 Challenge is a direct-action opportunity that encourages people to cut out sugary beverages and consume at least 60 ounces of water each day for the entire month of November. We double-dog dare you to take the challenge! Get your family and community involved too! Being healthy requires action and not excuses. And, doing it with others increases the probability that you will stick with the challenge. Be the change you want to see!

So, this November please join the NB3 Foundation in engaging Native youth in direct-action opportunities that motivates their health and fitness journey. Together, we are building #healthykidshealthyfutures.

Justin Huenemann
President & CEO, NB3 Foundation
NB3 Foundation Welcomes New Team Members
April returns to New Mexico from Washington, DC where she worked for 10 years with national tribal non-profit organizations, including the National Indian Health Board, National American Indian Housing Council and National Congress of American Indians. Most recently, April was a Public Affairs Specialist with the Indian Health Service in Rockville, Maryland. April is Diné from Iyanbito, New Mexico.

What enticed you to work for NB3 Foundation?
I enjoy working for non-profit organizations. I’m drawn to the deep causes and grassroots efforts. I appreciate and respect the NB3 Foundation’s mission and work, and I’m happy to be a part of such an amazing team.

What do you hope to gain from your NB3 Foundation experience?
I want to help share the work of the Foundation to the public, to Indian Country, to the media. Whether it’s highlighting the incredible efforts communities are taking to make clean drinking water accessible or showcasing youth being physically active and changing their eating habits through the Foundation’s programs.

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I like to read, collect books and attend book readings/signings. Now that I’m back in New Mexico, I enjoy spending time with my family, especially my nieces and nephews. I also like taking photos and videos of my cats, Liv and Jack.

Leroy is leading our new N7 Fund funded project focusing on measurably increasing physical activity and sport engagement among Native youth in the Albuquerque area. For the past 11 years, he has served the Native American Community Academy as founding Personal Wellness teacher, and most recently as Junior/Senior Dean of Students. Leroy is also a 2017 Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Culture of Health Leader. Leroy is from the Laguna Pueblo of New Mexico.

What enticed you to work for NB3 Foundation?
The positive vibe that I observed and experienced with the team at various functions. My passion has always been to promote healthy living, and now I get to create more opportunities for our Indigenous communities—alongside a group of awesome people!  

What do you hope to gain from your NB3 Foundation experience?
I hope to gain life-long relationships with those who share the same passion as I do; internal and in the community. It is my goal to know the ins and outs of the NB3 Foundation so I can REPRESENT the team, no matter where I go.  

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I enjoy spending time with my wife (Niko) and two kids (Paisley and Manto’inge). We love museums, parks, Costco and community events. As an advocate for family fitness, I love pushing our Bob Strollers in 5k races, doing yoga with my family and volunteering at wellness/fitness events. If there is extra time in my schedule, I love hitting up coffee shops.
Register Your NB3FIT WEEK Event Today!
NB3FIT WEEK : A National Day of Native Youth Health and Fitness – November 5-11, 2017
NB3 Foundation is calling on tribes, communities, schools, organizations and families to host a youth health and fitness activity on one day during NB3FIT WEEK – November 5-11. The NB3FIT WEEK goals are to: engage 12,000 Native youth across the country in physical activity for a minimum of one hour during that week; promote drinking clean water; and encourage eating healthy foods.

It’s simple: pick a date and activity for your event then register your event at the NB3FIT WEEK website ! Once your event is registered, NB3 Foundation will send out posters and a toolkit with customizable flyer and press release and other materials to help promote your event. 

Lace Up Your Running Shoes for the NB3FIT
National Cross Country Race!
NB3 Foundation 2nd Annual NB3FIT Cross Country Race - November 11, 2017
As part of NB3FIT WEEK, runners of all ages and abilities have a rare opportunity to race on the beautiful Santa Ana Golf Course. Register today!


9:00 am: Open 5K
10:00 am: All Native High School 5K and Wings national Team Qualifier
11:00 am: Open 3K
11:45 am: Kids K (age 10 and under, non-competitive)
12:30 pm: Awards
Don't Let Sugar Shape You!
ZERO TO 60 CHALLENGE: Don’t Let Sugar Shape You! – November 1-30, 2017
NB3 Foundation is inviting tribes, communities, organizations, families and individuals to take the Zero to 60 Challenge – cutting out sugary beverages and drinking at least 60 ounces of water each day for the entire month of November. 


  • Zero Sugary Drinks
  • Up to 60 Ounces of Water
  • For Every Day in November

#ZeroTo60 #DontLetSugarShapeYou
Communities in Action!
Watch this video to learn how the Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation, the Minneapolis American Indian Center and other Native Strong Community Action Grant recipients are making a difference in their communities.

Native Strong’s grants support community-based programs that focus on children’s nutrition education, access to healthy foods, increased physical activity and culturally-based youth/community leadership development. 
Native Strong Presents at National Diabetes Conference
In a presentation, “Native-led Solutions to Promote Healthy Weight Among Children,” during the Diabetes in Indian Country Conference , the NB3 Foundation’s Native Strong team shared how its two signature programs – Native Strong and NB3FIT – are reducing Native childhood obesity and type 2 diabetes.

The team also introduced the Water First! Learning Community to a group of about 75 conference attendees from tribal, state and federal health programs across the country. The Water First! Learning Community consists of nine tribes and Native-led organizations in Arizona and New Mexico that were awarded $100,000 over a 2.5-year period to work on eliminating sugary-sweetened beverages and increasing safe drinking water consumption and/or breastfeeding in their respective communities. 
NB3 Foundation, AISES Host Charity Golf Tournament
at 40th AISES Conference
Nearly 1,900 students, educators and professionals attended the American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) 40 th Annual Conference in Denver on September 21-23, 2017. Through a special charity golf tournament, “Native Links Golf Classic,” the Notah Begay III (NB3) Foundation partnered with AISES to celebrate their 40 th year of supporting Native people in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) careers. NB3 Foundation also sponsored the conference’s wellness activities: pow wow fitness and yoga as well as provided fruit infused water for the conference sessions.

“NB3 Foundation is honored to be a part of AISES 40 th year celebration. Careers in STEM are important for our tribal communities as many of those careers are related to health. It’s nice to see our young people excited about science and math, and to have an organization like AISES to encourage their interests is amazing. NB3 Foundation is proud to support AISES,” said NB3 Foundation President and CEO Justin Huenemann.  
NB3 Foundation Partners with Up2Us Coach Program
Through a sports and leadership partnership with Up2Us Sports , the NB3 Foundation hired five coaches for its NB3FIT golf, soccer and cross country programs. The Up2Us Coach program offers coaches 40 hours of training in youth development and mentoring strategies to help promote physical activity and healthy eating habits to the youth they serve. Many youth who enjoy the NB3FIT camps come from nearby tribal communities.

In addition to NB3FIT’s fitness and physical activity component, coaches also teach the youth leadership skills and health and nutrition education based on resources from Up2Us and NB3FIT’s own curriculum.

Coaches are: Simona Casiquito from Jemez Pueblo; Peregrina Neito from Santo Domingo Pueblo; Demitrius Payne from Laguna Pueblo; Kalei Yepa from Jemez Pueblo; and Trevor Benavides from Albuquerque.
NB3FIT Cross Country Program Underway
Youth from the pueblos of Jemez, San Felipe, Sandia, Santa Ana and Santo Domingo gather Tuesday through Thursday to participate in NB3FIT’s Cross Country program.

During practice, the kids do various running exercises, such as long run, speed workouts with hurdles, speed ladders and there’s a hill day. Once a week on hill day, the Santa Ana youth are bussed to the Sandia Wellness Center to practice with their teammates. The first official cross country race was on September 23, and the season continues into the fall. 

Click here to learn more about the NB3FIT programs.
4 th Water First! Cohort Meeting
Native Strong ’s Water First! Learning Community cohort met for the fourth time in September at the Twin Arrows Casino Resort in Arizona. Last year, NB3 Foundation awarded grants to nine tribes and Native-led organizations in Arizona and New Mexico that focus on reducing sugar-sweetened beverages and increasing safe drinking water consumption and/or promoting breastfeeding. The grant is $100,000 over a 2.5 year period.

After nearly a year of community listening and assessing the healthy habits and behaviors among children in their respective communities, the grantees focused on brainstorming and sharing ideas on their respective projects during the Arizona meeting.

The cohort meetings are part of the Water First! grant and are intended to provide a learning community that allow grantees to be accountable to each team member and support each project with feedback and resources. The cohort will meet again in February 2018 during the Healthy Beverage Summit
Water First! Grantee Highlight
The STAR (Service to All Relations) School , a Water First! grantee, invited cohort members to the school’s Harvest Festival that included a farmer’s market, interactive stations with students and a community feast. Cohort members had the opportunity to view Diné cultural presentations and demonstrations, such as baking a Navajo corn cake, making kneel down bread and grinding corn.

An exciting part of the visit was learning about the school’s Water Filtration Bus. Yes, it’s an actual school bus. Seats were removed to install the filtration system. With help from the Water First! grant, the STAR School’s Water Filtration Bus demonstrates to students and community members how to make well water drinkable and how quality water tastes and smells using the filtration system.

Only three-quarters of the families who live in the STAR School attendance area have running water. The remaining families in Leupp, Birdsprings and Tolani Lake communities either haul water or are connected to a community well owned and operated by the school’s parent organization.

In the community assessment phase, the STAR School hosted a focus group of elders and discovered that people aren’t drinking the water because they feel the water tasted bad and was discolored. Many community members opt to purchase soda or other sugary beverages over bottled water, which can be pricey and unhealthy.

The STAR School is the first all off-grid, solar and wind powered, charter school in the country. The school serves students from pre-school to 8 th grade, and bases its philosophy around Navajo culture, kinship and clanship. 
1 Simple Way to Improve Your Holiday Shopping

It can be difficult to find the right gift, especially if you want to buy a gift that will last and be meaningful. There is one way to ensure your gift will be treasured. 

Consider donating to the NB3 Foundation. This can be on behalf of someone on your list or in honor of a loved one. Your donation will make a lasting impact by supporting our health and fitness programming for Native American children. 

So come November we ask you to keep us in mind, particularly for Giving Tuesday. More and more people around the world are participating in Giving Tuesday as a day to “give back.” This year, the NB3 Foundation has a goal to raise $1,500.

Improve your holiday shopping by clicking the donation link in your inbox starting November 1st or the donation link on the NB3 Foundation Facebook page, Twitter posts and website. 

Your contribution will directly support our NB3FIT programs (soccer, cross country and golf), increasing healthy outcomes among Native American children through increased physical activity and improved healthy nutrition. 

Our youth involved with our programming learn will learn ways to conquer obesity and type 2 diabetes for a lifetime because of you. What better way to enhance your holiday giving and know it will be used and cherished? 

#HealthyKidsHealthyFutures #GivingTuesday
NB3F Intern Update
Congratulations to Natahlia Enoah! Natahlia recently began a master's program at the University of New Mexico's Health Education Program.

Natahlia interned with NB3 Foundation in the summer of 2017. We are excited for her very promising future in public health. We are proud of you!