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Honouring the Voices: 40 years of Indigenous health research in Manitoba

November 23, 2015 — 

The Manitoba First Nations Centre for Aboriginal Health Research (MFN CAHR) in the Faculty of Health Sciences is celebrating the last 40 years of First Nations, Métis, Inuit and Indigenous health research in Manitoba with a week-long exhibit featuring over 45 oral histories as well as a symposium on Indigenous health.

What: Exhibit Launch: “Honouring the Voices: 40 Years of First Nations, Métis, Inuit and Indigenous Health Research in Manitoba”
When:  Tuesday, November 24, 2015
Noon – Opening prayer & ceremony
1:00 p.m. – Honouring the Voice documentary screening
2:00 p.m. – Book launch: Moving Aboriginal Health Forward: Discarding Canada’s Legal Barriers by Dr. Yvonne Boyer
Where: Brodie Centre Atrium, 727 McDermot Ave., University of Manitoba Bannatyne Campus

Oral history plays a vital role in understanding the past and sharing it with those who come after, making it the ideal way to mark a milestone in First Nations, Métis, Inuit and Indigenous Health research.

“The University of Manitoba has a long and successful history of engaging in health research with First Nations, Inuit, Métis and other Indigenous peoples around the world,” says Dr. Josée Lavoie, Director of MFN CAHR. “It is because of this leadership that many amazing changes to the way research is performed have taken place, within Manitoba and nationally. We are thrilled to be able to honour and recognize those people who have helped shape the research process and look forward to seeing where the future of health research takes us.”

“Honouring the Voices: 40 Years of First Nations, Métis, Inuit and Indigenous Health Research in Manitoba” is an exhibit resulting from more than 50 interviews with people working in this important field over the past four decades.

Collected by MFN CAHR, in partnership with the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs, Manitoba Métis Federation and Manitoba Inuit Association, these oral histories were used to spark an intriguing collection of interactive displays.

The stories, told from a wide variety of perspectives, reveal the ways in which the research community has listened to and learned from First Nations, Metis, Inuit and Indigenous communities and organizations. While initial relationships varied in their degree of collaboration, today’s partnerships reflect a respect for self-determination and Indigenous knowledges.

November 24 also marks the start of the 3rd Annual Indigenous Health Symposium: “Mapping the Way Forward”. This symposium, running from Nov. 24-26 on Bannatyne Campus, will bring together approximately 170 community and academic researchers, students, Elders, health leaders and policy-makers in Manitoba and Nunavut who share the common goal of improving the health of Indigenous communities.

Response was significant, with more than 175 registered to attend presentations on a wide variety of topics including: “Identifying and Advancing the Treaty Right to Health in Manitoba”, “Indigenous Food Sovereignty in Western Canada” and “We Lost Almost Everything: Little Saskatchewan First Nation Elders’ Perspectives of Loss and Healing After the 2011 Human-made Flood.”

The three-day symposium also features five keynote speakers, five panels, five workshops and more than 15 concurrent sessions focusing on topics ranging from using the medicine wheel to shape healthy communities; building respectful research relationships; and chronic disease among Indigenous populations.

View the complete program here.

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