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  Fall 2008

Welcome to the Many Hands, One Dream e-newsletter!


  Gold Stars awarded to Jordan’s Principle and MHOD  
In June 2008, the Child Death Review Unit of British Columbia’s Office of the Chief Coroner released its annual report for 2007, which includes a section on Aboriginal child health. The report awards “Gold Stars” to programs, organizations or initiatives that are “leading the way in health and safety.” Gold Stars were awarded to Jordan’s Principle and Many Hands, One Dream. The report also expressed support for the Many Hands principles. See the annual report for more information.

  Many Hands, One Dream survey shows community strengths  
Thanks to everyone who completed the Many Hands, One Dream survey conducted this summer. The goal of the survey was to learn more from communities on how to implement the Many Hands, One Dream principles. Many people responded that their communities have many strengths and ideas, but just need a bit of help to get started. All of the responses will be helpful as we move forward with our project to develop tools and resources to help communities implement the principles and kickstart initiatives in child and youth health. For a summary of the survey results, contact

  Invitation to 3rd International Meeting on Indigenous Child Health  
The 3rd International Meeting on Indigenous Child Health, co-hosted by the Canadian Paediatric Society and the American Academy of Pediatrics, will be held from March 6-8, 2009 in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The theme is “Many Voices into One Song.” Visit for more information on the event, and bookmark the page to have easy access to the latest program details. For more information, contact 613-526-9397 ext 263 or

  Youth speak out about Identity and Belonging in Canada  
Young people from across Canada, representing a variety of religious and cultural groups, met in May at Ottawa’s Landon Pearson Resource Centre for the Study of Childhood and Children’s Rights. The goal of the event was to discuss Canadian identity and belonging, and to better inform government and civil society leaders about the issues youth care about.  Jordie Fraser, a graduate student from the University of Northern BC and event facilitator, was struck by dialogue bridging the experiences of youth from urban, rural and Aboriginal communities. “It was pretty amazing how open-minded the participants were,” he said. “Many had never been asked for their opinions in quite this way. It was definitely empowering.” The National Collaborating Centre for Aboriginal Health supported Aboriginal participation in the workshop, the third in an annual series designed to expand national understanding of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. A report from the event is available by calling 613-520-2600 ext. 1453.

  First Teddy Bear Fair Health Screening a success at Rocky Lane School  
Capital Health Aboriginal Health and the Regional Child Health program partnered with the North Peace Tribal Council to provide the first Teddy Bear Fair Health Screening event. The event was held at Rocky Lane School, near Beaver First Nation, Alta. Over 100 children, from newborn to 7 years old, attended the fair, where various aspects of their health were assessed—including height, weight, vision and hearing, fine motor and gross motor development, dental hygiene, safety awareness, nutrition and more. Planning is underway to offer similar opportunities during the fall of 2008.

  A boost to Maskwacis Health Services and David Thompson Health Region  
Maskwacis Health Services (MHS) and the David Thompson Health Region (DTHR) received funding in March 2007 for a two-year partnership project to support access to health services for First Nations people in the Alberta communities of Hobbema, Ponoka and Wetaskiwin. The funding supports a First Nations Health Liaison Coordinator, who provides cultural and emotional support to First Nations clients/patients and their families and assists with access to health services in MHS and DTHR.  For more details, contact Bonita Saddleback at 780-585-3830 or Barb Olsen at 403-356-6427.

  Ajunnginiq Centre awarded funding for TV shows on Inuit health  
The Ajunnginiq Centre at the National Aboriginal Health Organization (NAHO) has been awarded $400,000 in funding from the Government of Canada International Polar Year program to produce three live, phone-in TV shows in the Inuit language about health and wellness issues that matter to Inuit. The interactive episodes will focus on Inuit youth resilience and coping skills, Inuit midwifery and maternal child health, and Inuit men's emotional, physical and mental health. The shows will air on the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network North in May 2009.

Next Generation Project working to help children at risk of developing type 2 diabetes
A child born to a mother with type 2 diabetes is 14 times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes at a young age than a child born to a healthy mother. Genetic susceptibilities unique to the Oji-Cree people in Manitoba and Northwestern Ontario have also been shown to further increase the risk. The Next Generation Project, a study led by Dr. Heather Dean at the Children's Hospital of Winnipeg, looks at growth patterns of children at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes at a young age, and screens high-risk children in hopes of preventing or delaying the onset of the disease. If you would like more information about the Next Generation Project, please contact Justin Cloutier at 204-977-5648.

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