Our Stories, Our Medicine Archive
Our Stories, Our Medicine Archive (OSOMA) is a community-based, community-owned archive that foregrounds traditional Indigenous health knowledge and their implications for improving chronic diseases. At its core, OSOMA is designed to create an archive that centers traditional Indigenous knowledge in construction and management of intellectual property, cultural artifacts, genealogy and health information.
In collaboration with the University of Denver Library, DU Graduate School of Social Work Associate Professor, Dr. Ramona Beltrán has designed OSOMA to embrace oral history as a tool for repatriating and preserving individual, family, and community health knowledge and highlighting strengths despite legacies of historical trauma and ongoing discrimination.
In addition to advancing this participatory archival mission, OSOMA is conducting systematic analyses of the oral history interviews and associated archival content. From these analyses and with a community advisory board, OSOMA is developing an interactive culture and community-centered health information website to support broad community engagement and ownership. Ultimately, OSOMA aims to diminish the negative health impacts of traumatic stressors on urban Indigenous communities through storytelling while also constructing and providing access to a culture-centered, community controlled digital archive and interactive health information website.
Read the University of Denver's Graduate School of Social Work News feature article on OSOMA.
"We’re dynamic and evolving and curious and creative, and we’re defining what being Indigenous is to us and not being defined by outsiders.”
Dr. Ramona Beltrán
Deb Marie Ortega
Professor and Director, University of Denver Latino Center for Community Engagement and Scholarship