Carry the Cure
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - Carry the Cure (CTC) is a non-profit organization that utilizes clinical tools, cultural traditions, and faith-based methods to offer communities comprehensive suicide and abuse prevention and healthy life-choice skills. They recently wrapped up their Broken Walls: Call of the Drum Alaska tour.
Bill Pagaran is the president and is also the drummer in the band Broken Walls. He and other band members were recently in Fairbanks sharing the message of hope.
Pagaran knows pain. He was given away when he was young. He was abused as a child. He was a troubled young person.
In his toughest times, though, he recalls when an Elder complimented his drumming. He also remembers when a fellow student said hello and gave him a fist bump. This was at the same time when Bill contemplated his own life.
In time, he says he got the help that he needed. It was then that he made a promise. “You know, it’s like if I could just go back to the villages. If I could just back to the communities of Alaska and share my music, to share our dancing,” he expressed. “If I could just help one person that was hurting like I was when I was a child, it would be all worth it.”
Pagaran has been helping people for more than 20 years now. In-person classes and presentations are available. But he also has a different way of sharing his message, and that is through music.
Pagaran, Jonathan Maracle, and Josh Maus make up the band Broken Walls. According to their website, the band has been traveling since 1998. They have played all over the world. Maracle writes most of the songs, where each lyric comes from his heart. Pagaran explained, “These songs are specially designed with lyrics to help lift hearts. They’re meant to give hope and give them (people) reasons to live.”
During the Broken Walls: Call of the Drum Alaska tour, which ran from August 20-27, 2023, Pagaran says the group is committed to sharing a message of hope to every village in Alaska. He says there has been a lot of depression and anxiety in rural Alaska. He also says that too many lives have been lost to suicide. “We want to carry hope and encouragement and resources to every man, woman, boy and girl in this state,” said Pagaran.
He admits that talking about suicide is not easy, and talking about suicide to young people carries its own challenges, including those who say talking about suicide is taboo. He said, “Some people say if you say suicide, it’s gonna happen, which is false. The truth about it and we learn how to open up the challenges surrounding suicide; then we can share the hope and the resources that people need.” He added, “They learn that they can talk about that tough issue in their heart.”
Pagaran says people are now beginning to talk, and he’s seeing a change in the state of Alaska by saying, “People understand their beauty, their value, and hope is rising up.”
As far as the future of CTC, Pagaran says more young people are learning to be trainers. He is confident they will carry the cure for generations to come. He also paid tribute to the values that are common in rural Alaska. “I’d just like to thank the Elders, and those that have gone before, the people that have danced their prayers, and those that have gone before us to share that hope.”
He added, “People understand their beauty, their value, and hope is rising up, and it’s really because of the Elders who came before us, and the Moms and the Dads who didn’t give up. I believe we’re in this season now where we are seeing change in Alaska.”
More information about Carry the Cure can be found at www.carrythecure.com.
More information about the band can be found at www.brokenwalls.com
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