The Morning News â€” Bob Hudson
Alexandria Alvarez, Miss Shoshone-Bannock, helped honor four tribal elders during an awareness fair at Fort Hall on Friday. They included Ella Appenay (in the wheelchair), Frank Papse Sr. and June Edmo Mira. Nellie Broncho was the other elder honored.
FORT HALL â€” In her role as an Adult Probation Worker for the Shoshone-Bannock Tribal Courts, Marcia Hall regularly is asked a variety of questions related to elderly citizens' issues.
So, with the support of court administrator Carina Poitra, she put together an Elder Abuse Awareness Fair to bring together a variety of vendors able to answer those questions in a one-stop fashion.
Tribal leaders also helped Hall honor four individuals over 90 years old, presenting them with Pendleton blankets embroidered with their names.
Joining in honoring the elders â€” Ella Appenay, Frank Papse Sr., Nellie Broncho and June Edmo Mira â€” was Alexandria Alvarez, Miss Shoshone-Bannock.
"My grandparents have been instrumental in helping know how to carry myself," said Alvarez. "I want all the elders to know you're not forgotten."
The presentations took place in front of a packed house during the Elderly Nutrition Program lunch in the Tribal Business Building.
Poitra said, "we want to thank all the elders for all your heritage and all of your advice."
Elliot Taquaynah, the chairman of the Elderly Advisory Board, said the problem of elder abuse is one that is often unspoken.
"There's no respect for older people," he said. "That's the problem."
Hall said depression and isolation are elements of elder abuse. Taquaynah said younger relatives often take advantage of their elders' frailties.
One of the vendors who sought to address such situations is the FBI.
And, Hall reminded those at the lunch, she and the Tribal Court are available to do so as well.