The creation of the Aboriginal Steering Committee 

10 Year anniversary of the ASC guiding HELP’s research  

Aboriginal Sense of Identity work piloted  

Towards Aboriginal Children and Families Thriving. ASC members, along with Stz’uminus First Nation’s Education Department, co-hosted a large gathering about the importance of the early years. (Chemainus, BC) 

ASC members attended the Toddler Development Instrument (TDI) focus group consultation session. (Vernon, BC) 

Aboriginal HELP Talks I. Themes included storytelling and making meaning of the EDI research in Indigenous community contexts, as well as a session on cultural safety.  Discussion by Squamish Chief Ian Campbell and Dr. Jo-ann Archibald, who shared her research method (Storywork)  and demonstrated how stories have the power to educate and heal the heart, mind, body, and spirit. 

Presentation on the benefits of EDI participation. In collaboration with the Aboriginal Community Action Toward Children’s Health (CATCH), an ASC Elder and HELP Community Liaison Coordinator presented to the Okanagan school district, local Nations, and Indigenous organizations.  (Westbank First Nation community centre, BC) 

Aboriginal HELP Talks II. Presentation and discussion sessions themed around Indigenous identity, culture, and language. Workshop facilitated by an ASC member on the EDI’s social-emotional items and their relevance to the values of the Cowichan Tribes teachings. 

Exploring EDI Data through a First Nations Lens: Community Stories and Teachings from the Cowichan Tribes. ASC member presentation and workshop on the values of the Cowichan Tribes teachings and their relevance to the EDI’s social-emotional items. HELP’s Community Liaison Coordinator provided an overview of the EDI and its relevance to Indigenous communities. (BC Aboriginal Child Care Society).

First Nations Health Authority (FNHA) invited HELP’s Aboriginal Community Liaison Coordinator to participate in their First Nations Regional Early Childhood, Education, and Employment Survey (FREEES) as a member of their Advisory Committee.

FNESC was a partner on the EDI Bias Study with Directions Research, HELP, and the BC Ministry of Children and Family Development. 

HELP began developing Indigenous MDI reports.

HELP contracted Indigenous owned-and-staffed Reciprocal Consulting to create new reports for Indigenous EDI and MDI data, considering the principles of OCAP, integrating the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action, and including Indigenous community and research perspectives.  Reports featured Indigenous worldviews and recognized identity and culture as protective factors to Indigenous child and youth well-being.  With input from the ASC, in late 2017, the templates were finalized for the next step for use in communities, and for gaining community input through consultation.   

HELP’s Data Team examined the Indigenous-related questions within the EDI and MDI datasets, considering the First Nation, Metis, and Inuit identity and language questions for each tool.  Coding of identity and language data was informed by work done by students from Dr. Mark Turin’s First Nations and Endangered Language Program at UBC.  

First Nation School Recruitment. Following the approval and release of the EDI Bias Study by FNESC and HELP, HELP began once again recruiting First Nation schools to participate in EDI and MDI studies.

Aboriginal HELP Talks III. Themes included Culture, Language & Identity as Links to Resilience and Community Wellness.  IndigenEYEZ, a First-Nation facilitation organization, led the discussion.  Dr. Mark Turin presented his research on the digitization of traditional language. (UBC Longhouse)

ASC members attended a meeting with HELP and FNESC (Indigenous Services Canada office), presenting to the K-12 Aboriginal Education Partners (including the BC Deans of Education and the Metis Nation) on the Aboriginal perspectives of the EDI and the MDI. 

Early Childhood Education Summer Institute. Supporting Aboriginal Families of Young Children with Disabilities training facilitated by an ASC member. HELP staff and ASC presentations on themes including: Research in First Nations communities, First Nation, Metis and Inuit engagement, HELP’s successes and struggles, what HELP has learned, and the role of the Aboriginal Steering Committee, as well as the relevance of the Cowichan Teachings to the EDI’s social-emotional items. (UBC, Vancouver) 

World Indigenous Conference on Education. Aboriginal Child Well-Being Data in British Columbia, presentation by ASC members. (Toronto, ON)

Toddler Development Instrument (TDI) and Indigenous pilot began with Nisga’a.

Bannock & Banter Series (ongoing), a public livestream of HELP’s commitment to continue learning about the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, the Truth and Reconciliation’s Call to Action, and the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls+ Calls for Justice.