About Us > Initiatives > First Nations Caregiver Project

First Nations Caregiver Project

In March 2012 the Saint Elizabeth First Nations, Inuit and Metis (FNIM) team completed a project funded by the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer that focused on building an improved understanding of the current cancer pathways for First Nation communities across Canada. This project highlighted many gaps and barriers for First Nation communities including a significant gap in support for caregivers, who play a critical role in allowing patients to remain in their homes. Communities identified the need for the development of culturally appropriate caregiver supports as an important gap in First Nations Cancer Control. In speaking to community health care providers they indicate that, while some resources may be available, they are receiving no education or ongoing support on how to use the information and lack the knowledge and confidence to provide education and support to family caregivers and family members

The SE FNIM Program partnered with Greenshield Canada Foundation and GlaxoSmithKline Inc. to develop a web-based Caregiver Train-the-Trainer Training to equip community-based health care providers, in First Nation communities, with the knowledge and support they need to confidently provide caregiver education and support to caregivers within their own communities. This would not only benefit those palliative patients, but anyone in the community requiring a significant level of home care in the short or long term allowing them to remain in a home environment rather than in a distant health care facility.

Saint Elizabeth believes that a train-the-trainer approach, providing health care workers with the knowledge they require to train informal caregivers, will significantly benefit home care recipients as well as their informal caregivers.

As a part of the process in developing the content for the online course, three caregiver sharing sessions were held across the country to help identify caregiving learning needs. To view the full sharing session reports and photo journeys click on the link provided.

Sandy Lake, ON sharing session report
Fisher River, MB sharing session report
Sturgeon Lake, SK sharing session report


Sandy Lake, ON photo journey



Sturgeon Lake, SK photo journey


 

The Caregiver Project was multi-phased and included a trial phase where First Nations utilized the online First Nations Supporting Natural Caregiver Course to trial and evaluate the delivery of a First Nation Caregiver Education and Support Network in their communities from September – November 2015. Click here to view the First Nation Supporting Natural Caregivers Course Trial Phase Summary Report.

With deep gratitude we acknowledge the Professional Caregivers who played an integral part in creating an atmosphere for Natural Caregivers that was supportive, respectful and inspiring.  We thank and appreciate all the participants for trusting us with their experiences and knowledge and also sharing the vision for their community’s Caregiver Education and Support Network.

Special recognition is given to Maxine Gladney, RN Home Care Coordinator, Fort Smith, Northwest Territories and Sharon Myhre, RN BN, Community Health Nurse from O-Chi-Chak Ko Sipi First Nation, Manitoba who utilized the course to trial, evaluate and provide feedback on the development of a First Nation Caregiver Education and Support Network in their communities. Based on the feedback received the course was revised including the addition of a guide to assist communities in utilizing the course and its resources to develop or enhance a caregiver support network. 

O-Chi-Chak Ko Sipi First Nation 
The O-Chi-Chak Ko Sipi First Nation is an Ojibway community located on the north western shore of Lake Manitoba and has year-round road access.  It is approximately 225 kilometres northwest of Winnipeg and adjacent to the settlement of Crane River. The total population is approximately 400.

The Trial Phase Lead for O-Chi-Chak Ko Sipi First Nation was Sharon Myhre, RN BN, Community Health Nurse (CHN).  Utilizing the online First Nations Supporting Natural Caregiver Course, Part 3- Developing or Enhancing a Natural Caregiver Education and Support Network resources Sharon began the process of developing a support network in her community.

To both recognize and celebrate the efforts of O-Chi-Chak Ko Sipi a photo journey was developed using session images along with local scenery and music to share their journey of developing a caregiver support network.





Fort Smith, NT
Fort Smith is a community of 2500 people with a mixed population First Nations in the surrounding are. Smith’s Landing First Nation sits on the Alberta/NWT border. Within Fort Smith itself,  there are Salt River First Nations and Metis. Languages within the community are English, Cree, Chipewyan and French.

The Trial Phase Lead for the community of Fort Smith was Maxine Gladney, Home Care Coordinator.  Maxine utilized the online First Nations Supporting Natural Caregiver Course, Part 3- Developing or Enhancing a Natural Caregiver Education and Support Network resources as the first step in developing a support network in her community.

To both recognize and celebrate the efforts of Fort Smith a photo journey was developed using session images along with local scenery and music to share their journey of developing a caregiver support network.





The updated First Nation Supporting Natural Caregiver course based on the feedback received during the trial phase is now available within @YourSide Colleague®!