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Female Pathways helps mothers, daughters start difficult conversations

Female Pathways helps mothers, daughters start difficult conversations

By Stacy Thacker
Special to the Times


When Cornelia Chee went through puberty she looked to her dad and brothers for help.

“My mother was always working, she never had time to be at home, but for her, I want to be there,” Chee said about her daughter. “I want to help her along the way.”

Chee and her daughter, Cheyanne Yazzie, are participating in Asdzaan Be’eena’, or the Female Pathways Program in Tsaile. The program teaches girls between the ages of 8 to 11 about puberty, personal hygiene, as well as the purpose and practices behind a Kinaaldá, the coming of age ceremony for young Navajo women.

The program is offered in Tsaile and Tuba City as part of a research study through the Johns Hopkins Center for American Indian Health. The program started in August of 2018 and has three cohorts. The third cohort will be starting soon.

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