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The Intergenerational Health & Healing Project ran in the midst of the COVID19 pandemic, from July 2021 to June 2022, and featured youth from communities that represent San Diego’s First People and latest newcomers, specifically the Kumeyaay and Somali communities. San Diego houses the largest number of tribal nations in any U.S. county and one of the largest concentrations of refugees in the country. Both groups have experienced collective and intergenerational trauma, precipitated by dislocation, dispersion, destruction of kinships and cultural traditions, and ongoing impact of forced relocation and racial violence that undermines their health and wellbeing. The Intergenerational Health and Healing Project provides first-person accounts of this history of violence as well as of practices of healing and regeneration. It traces intergenerational trauma and inter-community strategies for healing among Indigenous and refugee youth in San Diego.


Our goals are to: 1) Develop a greater understanding of shared issues faced by the two communities, as well as ongoing efforts of community resiliency. 2) Inspire and cultivate an inter-community relationship to continue organizing strategies that situate youths as creators of their own lives and futurities. 3) Cooperate with participants to generate an archive of stories through creative projects such as podcasts, creative writings, workshops, etc. 


We ask: 1) How do Indigenous and refugee youth experience intergenerational trauma in their everyday lives?  2) How have they built psychological wellness and resilience for themselves?


This project seeks to collaborate with youths of the Kumeyaay and Somali refugee communities in San Diego to discuss experiences of intergenerational issues and how they pertain to the needs, aspirations, and obstacles of the communities, as well as to generate inter-community strategies for intergenerational healing from trauma. Specifically, this project is in partnership with the United Women of East Africa Support Team, the Southern California Warrior Spirit (SWCC), and the Ethnic Studies department at UC San Diego. The program is an opportunity for participants to discuss their shared experiences and work together on projects that address these objectives and promote inter-community healing strategies. 

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