Engagement with First Nation, Metis, Inuit and Indigenous Peoples

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Working Together

The Central East LHIN estimates that the First Nation, Métis and Indigenous Peoples residing in the region represents about one percent of the total regional population. First Nation, Metis, Inuit and Indigenous People face a number of health issues and challenges and their health status is below that of the general population. First Nation, Metis, Inuit and Indigenous People have identified a number of barriers to receiving equitable access to health services including jurisdictional and funding issues, lack of sensitivity to their culture, and a lack of targeted programs that focus on their particular health needs.

One of the main goals of the Central East LHIN is to work with the First Nation, Metis, Inuit and Indigenous Peoples to improve their overall health status. The Central East LHIN is committed to working with all Indigenous communities to align health services with existing regional, provincial and federal health planning, health programming and service delivery systems to improve health outcomes.

Health Advisory Circles

Through two advisory groups - the Central East First Nations Health Advisory Circle and the Central East LHIN Métis, Inuit and Indigenous Peoples Health Advisory Circle, the Central East LHIN is receiving advice on a variety of topics reflecting on provincial and Central East LHIN priorities pertaining to the Indigenous communities represented.

To view the Métis, Inuit, Indigenous Peoples Health Advisory Circle Work Plan please click HERE.

To view the Health Advisory Circle Engagement Checklist please click HERE.

Engagement Framework 

As Indigenous Peoples input has become a priority focus, there is an increasing demand for external partners to meet with the established Health Advisory Circles. To ensure that engagement is meaningful, the Health Advisory Circles developed an engagement framework. For those interested in attending a Health Advisory Circle meeting, the Engagement Request Checklist template must be completed. The template has been developed to reflect a combination of Indigenous culture and Western culture. 
engagementAt the core of engagement are the concepts of respect and relationship building, encompassed by a holistic approach, including:

  • Physical (tangible): What knowledge do you have on this topic? 
  • Mental (vision): What is the intended outcome for your work?
  • Emotional (reasoning): What is your thought process for this area of work?
  • Spiritual (action): What steps will you take to achieve the outcome?

"In Anishinaabe territory we begin in the East. When we are born we are physical beings then we develop our mental abilities then comes emotional followed by our spiritual belief system. We try to incorporate all of our 4 quadrants into all that we do. When were are developing  a concept or creating something new, we start from a place of vision, a thought, and in order to follow thru with this thought we need to gather the knowledge or information that will be needed to develop this vision or bring it to fruition. Once we have the knowledge we then have to ensure that we know and acknowledge the reason as to why we are progression on this vision. Finally after having the vision, gathering the knowledge, knowing the reason (raison d’etre) we can then take action to ensure it is completed."

Preparing for the Journey - Caring for Indigenous People who are Seriously Ill 

The PREPARING FOR THE JOURNEY Caring for Indigenous People who are Seriously Ill is a 110-page resource manual aimed to help build and enhance capacity in Indigenous communities to care for community members. The purpose of this manual is to provide Indigenous health and social care providers, family, and community members with practical guidance and support on caring for people with serious illnesses. The manual is based on clinical best practices within the palliative approach to care and focuses on meeting the holistic needs of individuals and their caregivers. The contents of the manual provides a background on the Palliative Approach to Care, Advanced Care Planning, Developing a Care Plan and who is the care team, Providing Spiritual, Emotional, Mental and Physical Care, and Last Weeks or Days of Life.

First Nations Caregiver Module - Hospice Palliative Care Ontario 

Hospice Palliative Care Ontario (HPCO) launched a series of Caregiver Modules. The goal for these modules is to provide informal caregivers with support, resources, and information they need to be the best caregiver they can be. There are a wide range of topics available for caregivers from learning how to deal with their own emotions, to learning how to make tough decisions, and being able to meet the appropriate physical, spiritual and cultural needs for the individual they are taking care of. A module specific to First Nations communities was developed to acknowledge the many different values, beliefs, and practices across and within Indigenous communities. The First Nations module can be accessed here: http://caregiversupport.hpco.ca/ocpfn/

Regional Successes

In June 2019, Cara Frost and Chontelle from Lovesick Lake Native Women’s Association were awarded the Community Leadership Award from Peterborough Public Health. 

(Pictured Left to Right: Chontelle hill, Cara Frost, Nancy Jones)


“Over the past year Peterborough Public Health has been working with a tremendous organization, the Lovesick Lake Native Women’s Association (LLNWA). Our Youth Development Worker, and Student Peer Leaders co-created and facilitated a six-week program with Lovesick Lake staff that explored positive coping skills, lung health, critical thinking, and media literacy, and examined the differences between commercial tobacco products and sacred tobacco. The project culminated with the creation of a book that the youth and caregivers developed together, that helped the participants understand some of ways that sacred tobacco is important to their families. Community connectedness, advocacy, caring, and the importance of family were themes that were evident throughout this process. LLNWA showcased that they will always be present for the community, and care deeply for everyone that passes through their doorway. For these reasons, we would like to present the Community Leadership award to Cara and Chontelle of the Lovesick Lake Native Women’s Association on behalf of PPH for their work and dedication.” 

- Peterborough Public Health

Smudging Ceremony - 2019

To view photos from the Smudging Ceremony that took place on National Indigenous Day at the Central East LHIN click HERE

Optimal Health Weekend - 2019 

The Optimal Health Weekend brought together community members for a two day event. The Friday Night Social was hosted at Nogojiwanong Friendship Centre where community members gathered to listen to Elder Dorothy Taylor, enjoy a potluck-style feast, and dance to the Big Drum and hand drummers. On the Saturday, several partnering organizations came together to host an interactive health fair which allowed community members to experience new hands-on healing techniques, such as Thai massage, Reiki, and therapeutic touch; along with information regarding existing supports and services. In addition, community members were able to listen to information from such great presenters as Crystal Scrimshaw, James Whetung, and Joseph Pitawanakwat. 

To view photos from this event click HERE

National Indigenous Peoples Day - 2018 

On June 21, 2018, the same day as summer solstice, Canadians recognize National Indigenous Peoples Day. Several events across the Central East LHIN occurred surrounding this date, including celebrations hosted at Northumberland Hills Hospital and the Regional Cancer Centre. These events celebrate the unique heritage, diverse cultures and outstanding contributions of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples. To view a video of these events please click HERE.

Terms of Reference

Terms of Reference for the two advisory groups can be accessed by clicking on the links below.

For more information on the Central East First Nations Health Advisory Circle and the Central East LHIN Métis, Inuit and Indigenous Peoples Health Advisory Circle, please contact Jeanne Thomas at jeanne.thomas@lhins.on.ca.

For more information on the Provincial Aboriginal LHIN Network (PALN) please click HERE.