ABOUT DAY EAGLE HOPE PROJECT
My personal journey began in November of 2016 with the new diagnosis of Breast Cancer. Having grown up on the Fort Belknap Reservation my entire life, I knew that it was not going to be easy to navigate through the already stressed healthcare system in our community. I often asked myself, "How will I make the 300 mile round trip to the nearest cancer center?" Through many trials and errors I was able to complete my last chemo treatment one year ago, and through this personal experience, Day Eagle Hope Project was created.
This organization is needed because of the high risk factors that American Indians face with breast cancer and diagnosis. Furthermore, inadequate access to quality health care and remote areas of living make it very difficult to be treated and diagnosed in a timely manner.
Our organization's name comes from my daughter Tearia Sunchild. She is an enrolled Chippewa Cree/Aaniiihh and was given the name Kisikahw Kihiw Iskwesis, ᑭᓯᑲᐤ ᑭᐃᐤ ᐃᐢᑫᐧᓯᐢ “Day Eagle Girl”. The eagle represents courage, wisdom and strength and its purpose was as the messenger to the Creator. Acknowledging my daughter's strength and resilience as a young Native girl, Day Eagle Hope Project was named.
Our beautiful logo which represents my daughter's Indian name was designed by Beldon Billy, an enrolled Chippewa Cree member.
We are here to serve,
Founder and Executive Director
To provide early detection, patient navigation, transportation and cultural support for women and families going through troubling times. Not only does Day Eagle Hope Project provide hope, we also provide holistic cultural healing with Equine therapy.
OUR STAFF AND BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Our Team consists of Enrolled Tribal Members as well as health professionals to provide healing and hope in a culturally appropriate setting.
Tescha Hawley, MSW, MHA
Tescha's maternal grandmother Madeline Skinner Colliflower
Tescha is the Founder of Day Eagle Hope Project which she was motivated to start after personally experiencing many trials and challenges on her own journey navigating life with a breast cancer diagnosis. She is an enrolled member of the Aaniiih (Gros Ventre) Tribe in Fort Belknap, Montana.
A graduate of Washington University in Saint Louis and Montana State University Billings, Tescha has two master’s degrees in Social Work and Health Care Administration. She works at Fort Belknap's Tribal Health Program.
Tescha is active in the community and as a mental health therapist. She has worked diligently to help move her community through a Suicide epidemic on the reservation.
Hillary Handy, RN
Hilary is an enrolled member of the Aaniiih (Gros Ventre) Tribe in Fort Belknap, Montana. She obtained her nursing licence at MSU Northern and is a registered Nurse at the Harlem Public Schools. Hilary has worked in Scobey and Harlem as an emergency room nurse.
Hilary is also a ranch wife operating a 4th generation ranch with her husband and two daughters. She is very passionate about caring for the elderly and children. She is very committed to the Day Eagle Hope Project and looks forward in serving as the President of the board.
Deborah Roudebush, RN
Deborah has been practicing nursing for over 16 years and is currently working in the Emergency Department of the Fort Harrison VA Hospital, where she is in the leadership position of NOD. She has worked 15 years for the VA and truly has a passion for working with Veterans. She has an extensive background in emergency nursing, but also has experience in community nursing, med-surg nursing, home care and long term facilities. She has held certifications in Emergency Nursing, Trauma Nursing, Liver and Kidney Transplantation and Advanced Cardiac Care and she is a member of the ENA. She is competent in the nursing code of ethics, standards of care, and in the policies and procedures of hospitals where she has worked.
Deborah had the privilege of growing up in North Central Montana in the rural towns of Hogeland and Harlem, where the core values of love, respect, compassion, spirituality, honesty and care were instilled in her.
Her personal life has been greatly affected by cancer, with the loss of family and friends whom she cared for deeply, and through the spirit, courage and faith of those friends who have won the battle and achieved remission. Her Mom was diagnosed with a cancerous brain tumor when Deborah was in high school and fought hard for four years before succumbing to the cancer. She watched her Mom struggle for proper healthcare and knows firsthand the battle for successful treatments, the tremendous time and money required for travel, and the proper care and compassion that cancer patients in North Central Montana deserve.
As a member of this board, she is proud and excited to be able to lend her nursing expertise and give back to the communities that have given so much to her and her family.
Fawn Williamson, AS
Fawn is an enrolled member of the Assiniboine (Nakoda) Tribe in Fort Belknap, Montana.
She graduated from Harlem High School and graduated from Aaniiih Nakoda College with an Associate of Science in Allied Health.
Fawn is currently working on completing her Criminal Justice Degree at Montana State University- Northern.
She is the mother of two daughters, Mia and Mila.
Her sister, Kathy Williamson, was a breast cancer survivor.