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2020 Winter Wellness Grants

The First Nations Health Authority will award grants again this year for events and challenges aimed at encouraging conscious acts of health and wellness during the coldest months.

The 2020 theme is Be My Guest - Youth for Elders. The focus is on youth designing events to hold with or for Elders.

“This theme will foster intergenerational connections and help our youth develop skills in event planning and knowledge of traditional protocol," said FNHA Chief Executive Officer Joe Gallagher. “We know these kinds of connections – connections to community and connections to culture – are integral to wellness. And while we are asking youth to work with and for Elders, we know that other community members will also need to be involved to ensure the success of these Winter Wellness activities."

The grants are open to B.C. First Nations communities, organizations, and schools as well as agencies that deliver direct health services to First Nations people.

Deadline for applications is October 25, 2019

Find out more and apply online here.

Registration Open for Gathering Wisdom for a Shared Journey X

Please join the First Nations Health Council on January 14-16, 2020 for Gathering Wisdom for a Shared Journey X, hosted at the Vancouver Convention Centre on the unceded territory of the Coast Salish. Come celebrate the 10-year milestone of Gathering Wisdom for a Shared Journey!

The Gathering Wisdom forum this year will be a time of celebration and will feature discussions on health, mental health and the social determinants of health. It will be an opportunity for leaders, health directors and wellness leads to hear updates and engage in discussions with the FNHC, FNHA and the First Nations Health Directors Association (FNHDA). It is an opportunity for First Nations to engage in direct dialogue with each partner and other health system partners on factors that influence the health and wellness of their children, families and communities.

Registration Deadline: Friday, December 13, 2019 at 11:59pm

Register here.

Results Released from Expanded First Nations Health and Wellness Survey

The First Nations Health Authority (FNHA) has released the results of the most comprehensive First Nations health and wellness survey ever carried out in the province.

The First Nations Regional Health Survey (RHS)​ is the only First Nations-led and governed, nationally-representative population health and wellness survey. This survey, the largest one to incorporate First Nations perspectives on health and wellness, asked about traditional wellness and community strengths in addition to health care access and chronic diseases.

The third phase of the RHS, conducted from 2015 to 2017, collected data from nearly 6,000 respondents from 122 communities. The FNHA heard from community members and regional leaders that they needed high-quality data that could inform evidence-based policy, programs and services. To meet this need, the FNHA funded an expansion of the survey that nearly doubled the number of participating First Nations communities and individuals compared to previous phases of the survey. Due to the expansion, the RHS results are being shared for the first time at the regional level, with one report for each of the five FNHA regions in addition to the provincial report. This fulfils the FNHA's commitment to return community-generated information to support each region's health and wellness planning.

Read the full new release here.

Sober(er) for October 2019

Rethink your drink

Sober(er) for October is back again! This event is a great opportunity for us to look at the role of alcohol in our lives – how much, how often and why do we consume it? This campaign is about helping us reflect on these questions and learning more about how alcohol impacts our health and what alternatives we may enjoy instead.

Above all, we hope you'll join our challenge. What's the challenge? That's entirely up to you. How do you want to challenge yourself this month? You could decide to:

  • ​drink alcohol only on weekends or only particular weekdays
  • limit how many drinks you have at a given time
  • try and stop drinking altogether this month
  • alternate alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks
  • be alcohol-free and decide to be a designated driver and support your friends
  • pair up with a friend and create a challenge to do together

Read the full post here!

Elders support patients, families and care teams at North Island Hospital campuses in Comox and Campbell River

Pictured above: On left, Sheryl Thompson, Elder-in-Residence
at North Island Hospital Campbell River. On right, Fran Prince, Elder-in-Residence at North Island Hospital Comox Valley.

Two Kwakwaka’wakw Elders have joined a new Elder-in-Residence program at the North Island Hospital campuses in Campbell River and Comox to support patients, families and staff by promoting understanding and respect for Indigenous knowledge, culture and values.

Island Health and the First Nations Health Authority (FNHA) developed the Elder-in-Residence program to ensure that Indigenous perspectives, knowledge and approaches to wellness are honoured in hospital settings. This position supports a proactive and holistic approach to health and wellness through the delivery of services that respect the customs and traditions of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples.

Read the news release here.

Orange Shirt Day 2019

Words from FNHA CEO Joe Gallagher on September 30th:

“As I put on my Orange Shirt this morning, I thought about where the work of reconciliation began. First one or two, then many, then thousands of residential school survivors brought history to light through their testimony. It is important that we remember the tremendous work they did for our people and our children."

Read the full post here.

Clients Give Thumbs Up to New Health Benefit Plan – “Works!”

It was the day after the FNHA transferred the administration of health benefits to Pacific Blue Cross. An urgent request from a dental office was transferred to FNHA Health Benefits Assessor Madeline Tifenbach. The dental office had a three-year-old First Nations child sitting in the dental chair. The family lived in BC but had not yet registered for medical or dental coverage.

The new system with Pacific Blue Cross allowed Madeline to immediately add the child to the benefits plan, which in turn allowed for an immediate assessment of the dentist's treatment plan.

Read more here!

World Environmental Health Day 2019

On World Environmental Health Day (September 26) FNHA celebrated two Environmental Health Officers recognized for their outstanding work with First Nations in British Columbia​​​​​.

Environmental health professionals at FNHA are partners to communities and provide advice and guidance to First Nations leadership in British Columbia on a wide range of environmental health topics, including drinking water, food safety, air quality, and emergency preparedness and response.

With World Environmental Day, there is a call for Environmental Health Practitioners to play a pivotal role in adaptation strategies and measures to protect all communities against the challenges of climate variability at a grassroots level.

Read the full post here.

A Made-for-BC Accessibility Legislation

The BC Government has committed to developing new laws, standards, and policies to better support people with disabilities to live with dignity and to meaningfully participate in their communities. As part of this work, the Government is looking to engage peoples with disabilities, as well as all British Columbians, on the creation of provincial accessibility legislation. Accessibility legislation would aim to empower government, persons with disabilities, and the broader community to work together to identify, remove, and prevent barriers.

We have been informed that there is opportunity to provide feedback to the province on the development of accessibility legislation. The deadline for feedback is November 29, 2019 at 4 p.m.

During this time, you can share your feedback in several different ways including:

Community groups, libraries and other organizations can apply for resources for independent community meetings for up to $2,000 to host their own conversations and provide feedback. For details, visit SPARC BC.

Organizations, self-advocates and advocates can also make formal submissions through the BC Accessibility website.

After the consultation period ends, the BC Government will develop a summary of the feedback and input that has been received.

Healthy Schools BC Regional Grants - Now Available

Healthy Schools BC Regional Grants support education and health-sector partners to work together on initiatives that support healthy schools, with a focus on promoting mental health and well-being, and Indigenous ways of wellness.

Who Can Apply?

Healthy Schools BC Regional Grants are available to:

  • School Districts
  • Regional Groups of Public Schools (2 or more)
  • Regional Groups of Independent Schools (2 or more)
  • Regional Groups of First Nations Schools (2 or more)

Please send your completed application to: hsbc@dashbc.ca by October 15th, 2019.

Find out more here.

FNHA Job Opportunities

Facilities Technician
Location: Vancouver
Deadline: October 8, 2019 at 4:00 PM

Administrative Assistant (Term ends January 15, 2020) 
Location: Victoria
Deadline: October 9, 2019 at 4:00 PM

Community Health Nurse, Health Center (Lillooet), Full Time (Term ends March 31, 2021)
Location: Lillooet
Deadline: October 9, 2019 @ 4pm

Community Health Nurse, Nursing Station (Anahim Lake) Term
Location: Anahim Lake
Deadline: October 9, 2019 @ 4pm

Regional Mental Health & Wellness Liaison (Term ending March 31, 2021)
Location: Vancouver Island and Northern
Deadline: October 10, 2019 at 4:00pm

Event Coordinator
Location: West Vancouver
Deadline: October 11, 2019 at 4:00pm

Harm Reduction Educator
Location: Prince George
Deadline: Open Until Filled

Find all job postings on our website.

BC First Nation​s a​nd Aboriginal Health Job Opportunities​​

Home Care Nurse
Organization: Dease River First Nation
Location(s): Dease River
Deadline: Open until filled
Job description

Mental Health and Addictions Services Clinician
Organization: Kwakiutl Health Centre
Location(s): Port Hardy
Deadline: Open until filled
Job description

Occupational Therapist
Organization: Ts’ewulhtun Health Centre
Location(s): Duncan
Deadline: Open until filled
Job description

Mental Health Clinician
Organization: Skidegate Health Centre
Location(s): Skidegate
Deadline: Open until filled
Job description