About Us

About Us

Our Commitment: Access to Health Research

Participation and Empowerment of Aboriginal Peoples in Research to Improve Health and Well-being.

Aboriginal health continues to be a key area for research development and knowledge translation in Canada.Research and knowledge sharing are needed to address the ongoing health disparities in Canada’s Aboriginal peoples and in other indigenous societies.Health research and knowledge sharing will enable Aboriginal peoples to contribute to and indeed resolve these health issues through self-determination.

The Aboriginal Capacity and Developmental Research Environments program of the CIHR Institute of Aboriginal Peoples’ Health was launched in 2001.It was designed to address the major issue facing Aboriginal health research, namely the issue of insufficient capacity to carry out relevant research in this emerging field.This lack of capacity is apparent in the numbers of trainee researchers in the area of Aboriginal health.The lack of capacity is equally apparent in the limitations faced by Aboriginal communities in designing and carrying out health research that meets their needs.Capacity development is also needed for the wider cadre of academic health researchers to help them more effectively engage with Aboriginal peoples to address important health issues.As a network for Aboriginal health research, the Alberta NEAHRNetwork has progress to report in all three of these areas, and we continue to provide mentorship and support.However, more work needs to be done.This Network Environments for Aboriginal Health Research application will address capacity development requirements in all three of the key areas above.Our role as a network will be to facilitate, to bring people together – trainees with communities and academics – and create opportunities for research and knowledge sharing.The major themes for the new ACADRE-NEAHR grant application will include:

Transmitting the Message, Learning from Others: Knowledge transfer and exchange, community to community, community to university, and university to community, will allow the world, indigenous and non-indigenous, to know about Indigenous Peoples’ understanding of health and how to improve it.Learning from the experience of other indigenous peoples will lead to better health practice and outcomes.We have a body of knowledge developed within the network to communicate as well as to develop sustainable relationships with Indigenous communities.

Access to Health Research for Indigenous Peoples: This is a basic right of Indigenous Peoples.Health Research, conducted by and for Indigenous Peoples, represents the way forward to improving the health of Indigenous Peoples worldwide.Health research should not be relegated to the outside community; Indigenous communities need to take control of the agenda.This is the real indigenous health access theme – taking control of our own healthy future through research, capacity building and knowledge translation.Health is the end-product of capacity building.

Specific Themes: We anticipate that participatory action research projects might address the following:Access to culturally appropriate health care and services, urban and rural; Indigenous approaches to chronic conditions and care; Indigenous approaches to dealing with mental health issues; healthy living / resilience; environmental issues / connection to the land; traditional practice / healing; cultural awareness and cultural competency in health service delivery and in health research; social determinants of health – application to research and knowledge translation.

Our Principles for Aboriginal Health Research

The following principles build upon AlbertaCentre for Child, Family and Community Research (ACCFCR) values and practices, to which the AlbertaNEAHRhas contributed. Collectively, these principles form a foundation for Aboriginal health research supported by the Alberta NEAHR.

Research must benefit Aboriginal people.

Aboriginal communities should become aware of the need for health research and its potential to make a positive difference in the community. Investigators must ensure that research is conceived, structured, and communicated so that the findings will benefit, not harm, Aboriginal people and their communities.

Research must be culturally appropriate and relevant to the community.

Aboriginal research must respect and reflect the culture and traditions of Aboriginal people. Researchers must work together with the community to establish research projects with objectives that are needed and relevant to the community, as well as develop ethical guidelines that ensure that research is conducted in a culturally appropriate way and is accountable on all levels.

Research should build upon the strengths of Aboriginal people and communities.

Research on Aboriginal concerns should focus on strengths rather than problems, and in seeking to resolve problematic situations within Aboriginal communities, researchers should take their cue from the Aboriginal culture. They should seek to raise awareness among Aboriginal people that problems can be solved and that research plays an essential role in identifying and remedying them.

Aboriginal people must be full participants in the research that affects them.

Aboriginal people need to be able to participate fully in identifying the problems in their communities and in developing priorities for research into the issues that affect their lives. They should have abundant and meaningful opportunities to make decisions about this research--opportunities that respect Aboriginal culture, traditions, and ceremony.

Aboriginal research capacity must be enhanced.

Aboriginal people must play an integral part in research on issues that affect their lives and communities, but they have to have opportunities to learn about the role of research, the research process, and be taught the skills to conduct the research. An Alberta cadre of well-trained Aboriginal researchers would ideally be best equipped to conduct Aboriginal research.

Effective partnerships strengthen the potential to conduct effective Aboriginal research.

Effective partnerships with the many other groups involved in research provide the opportunity to enhance the quality of Aboriginal research. The level of expertise in conducting Aboriginal research varies among these groups, such that all partners should gain from such collaboration.

Elders must be consulted about Aboriginal research conducted in their communities.

Elders are valued and respected members of the community. They maintain and teach traditional knowledge, give a perspective on the past and the future, andensure things are done in a proper and respectful way. As leaders within their communities, they must be consulted about research that is proposed or being conducted. At least one Elder should be part of the research team and involved in all stages of the research.

The different types of Aboriginal communities must be recognized.

Aboriginal communities are diverse in their background and makeup, ranging from groups bound together by their Aboriginal heritage to groups who happen to live together in one place. Protocols can vary from one community to another; the research team need to identify and honour them when building partnerships between the Aboriginal and academic communities.

Unique cultural issues that affect Aboriginal research must be considered and accommodated during the ethics process.

Cultural issues can affect the way research is structured and the strategies used in collecting data. The AAN will support only Aboriginal health research projects that have undergone an ethics development process that addresses and accommodates unique Aboriginal cultural considerations.

Research findings about Aboriginal people must be communicated to Aboriginal communities.

Researchers must communicate their findings to the Aboriginal communities who participated in the research project in a meaningful and accessible form. Research findings must be written in plain language that is easily understandable by all. They should also be translated into indigenous languages where relevant and requested by the community.

Aboriginal communities must have ownership and control of the research findings.

The Aboriginal community who participated in the research owns the data, and has the right to control its use and dissemination. Researchers must negotiate agreements covering sample collection and storage, data storage, data sharing, and future use of the data with the communities.

NEAHR Team Members & Collaborators

NEAHR Team Members

Cora Weber-Pillwax

University of Alberta

Betty Bastien

University of Calgary

Lola Baydala

University of Alberta

Brenda Cameron

University of Alberta

Dwayne Donald

University of Alberta

Lauralyn Houle

Northern Lakes College

Gail Jardine

University of Calgary

Richard Long

University of Alberta

Brenda Parlee

University of Alberta

Anna Santos Salas

University of Alberta

Evelyn Steinhauer

University of Alberta

Lorna Williams

University of Victoria

Noreen Willows

University of Alberta

Daniele Behn-Smith

University of Alberta

Esther Tailfeathers

Blood Tribe Clinic, Standoff

Stanley Wilson

University of Saskatchewan

NEAHR Collaborators

Rita Marten

Athabasca Tribal Corporation

Victor Gladue

Elder/Cree Knowledge Teacher

Joyce Beaver-Cerny

Michif Cultural and Resource Institute

C. John Crier

Pe Sakastew Healing Centre

Alice Reid

Bigstone Health Commission

Gladys Cardinal

Oski Pasikoniwew Kamik School


Alberta NEAHR office (University of Alberta)


Acronyms and Abbreviations

Abbreviation: A shortened form of a word or phrase, used to represent the whole.

Acronym: A pronounceable word formed from the beginnings (letter or syllable) of other words and thus representing the phrase so formed.

NEAHR: Network Environments for Aboriginal Health Research

AADWP: Aboriginal Alcohol & Drug Worker Programme

AAHRP: Atlantic Aboriginal Health Research Program

AANSE: Aboriginal Ambassadors in the Natural Sciences and Engineering

AASLD: American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases

ABMRF: Alcoholic Beverage Medical Research Foundation

ACCU: Aboriginal Cancer Care Unit

ACHIEVE: ACtion for Health equity IntErVEntions

ACUNS: Association of Canadian Universities for Northern Studies

ACYRN: Aboriginal Community Youth Resiliency Network

ADRD: Alzheimer's Disease and Related Dementias

AFN: Assembly of First Nations

AFSP: American Foundation for Suicide Prevention

AHCAP: Aboriginal Health and Community Administration Program

AHF: Aboriginal Healing Foundation

AHIP: Aboriginal Health Initiative Program

AHRN: Arctic Health Research Network

AHS-AMHB: Alberta Health Services - Alberta Mental Health Board

AICR: Association for International Cancer Research

AIDS: Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome

AK-NEAHR: Anisnabe Kekendazone - Network Environments for Aboriginal Health Research

AMS: Associated Medical Services

APCFNC: Atlantic Policy Congress of First Nation Chiefs

ART: AntiRetroviral Therapy

AS: Autism Speaks

ASHWINI: ASsociation for Health Welfare In the Nilgiris - India

AVL: Anthropology Visualization Laboratory at the university of alberta

BBBS: Big Brothers Big Sisters of Saskatoon

BC CLEAR: British Columbia Clean Air Research

BCAAFC: British Columbia Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres

BCAAFC-PAYC: British Columbia Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres - Provincial Aboriginal Youth Council

BCEOHRN: British Columbia Environmental and Occupational Health Research Network

BCMSF: British Columbia Medical Services Foundation

BOOST: Building Opportunities, Opening Students' Tomorrows!

CAAN: Canadian Aboriginal AIDS Network

CAG: Canadian Association of Gastroenterology

CAHR: Canadian Association of HIV Research

CAHR: Centre for Aboriginal Health Research

CAM: Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM:

CANFAR: CANadian Foundation for Aids Research

CAP: Congress of Aboriginal Peoples

CBHSSJB: Cree Board of Health and Social Services of James Bay

CBR: Community Based Research

CCFC: Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of Canada

CCFF: Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

CCMB: Cancer Care ManitoBa

CCMC: Commission for Case Manager Certification

CCO: Cancer Care Ontario

CCSA: Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse

CDC: Centers for Disease Control and prevention

CEECD: Centre of Excellence for Child Development

CEO: Chief Executive Officer

CERAH: Centre for Education and Research on Aging and Health

CGCRC: Canadian Glaucoma Clinical Research Council

CHEO: Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario

CHPCA: Canadian Hospice Palliative Care Association

CHSRF: Canadian Health Services Research Foundation

CIDA: Canadian International Development Agency

CIET: Centro de Investigación de Enfermedades Tropicales

CINE: Centre for Indigenous peoples' Nutrition and Environment

CIRMF: Centre International de Recherches Médicales de Franceville

CIS: Canadian Incidence Study of reported child abuse and neglect

CISEPO: Canadian International Scientific Exchange Program

CLSC: Centres locaux de services communautaires

CMA: Canadian Medical Association

CMA: Census Metropolitan Area

CMD: Common Mental Disorders

CMHRU: Culture and Mental Health Research Unit of the department of psychiatry, jewish general hospital

CMM: Confederacy of Mainland Mi'kmaq

CNIB: Canadian National Institute for the Blind

CBPR: Community-based Participatory Research

CO-PI: CO-Principal Investigator

COTF: Canadian Occupational Therapy Foundation

CPHA: Canadian Public Health Association

CSFS: Carrier Sekani Family Services

CUISR: Community University Institute for Social Research

CV: Curriculum Vitae

CWB: Community Well-Being

CYHRNet: Child & Youth Health Research Network

DARE: Database of Abstracts of Reviews of Effects

DHMSA: Diploma in the History of Medicine of the Society of Apothecaries

DIAND: Department of Indian and Northern Affairs and Development

DMARD: Disease-Modifying Anti-Rheumatic Drug

EBL: EthnoBiology Letters

EMSC: Emergency Medical Services for Children

EoG: End-of-Grant

EVD: Electronic Video Documentary

FAE: Fetal Alcohol Effecs

FALCON: First American Land-grant College and Organization Network

FAS: Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

FASD: Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder

FBCYICN: Federation of British Columbia Youth in Care Networks

FN: First Nation(s)

FNHC: First Nations Health Council

FNIHB: First Nations and Inuit Health Branch

FNIRHS: First Nation and Inuit Regional Health Survey

FNUC: First Nations University of Canada

FOA: Funding Opportunity Announcement

FRCPC: Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of Canada

FSIN: Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations

FUN: Friends Uniting for Nature

GDI: Gabriel Dumont Institute

GHR: Global Health Research

GiA: Grant-in-Aid

GIHRS: Global Indigenous Health Research Symposium

GLMA: Gay and Lesbian Medical Association

HC: Health Canada

HIRD: statistics canada Health Information and Research Division

HIRGC: assembly of manitoba chiefs Health Information and Research Governance Committee

HIV: Human Immunodeficiency Virus

HLN: Honouring Life Network

HLS: Hospital Libraries Section

HoPN: Health of Population Networks

ICAH: Information Centre on Aboriginal Health

ICC: Indigenous Cultural Competency

ICIHRP: International Collaborative Indigenous Health Research Partnership

ICWR: Indigenous Child Welfare Research network

IDRC: International Development Research Centre

IHMEC: International Health Medical Education Consortium

IHRDP: Indigenous Health Research Development Program

IHRKTN: Indigenous Health Research Knowledge Transfer Network

IIPS: International Institute for Population Studies

IK: Indigenous Knowledge

INAC: Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

IPHRC: Indigenous Peoples' Health Research Centre

IPV: Intimate Partner Violence

IRESCO: Institute for REsearch, Socio-economic Development and Communication

ISG: Sub Group on Indigenous children and young people

ITA: Industry Training Authority

ITK: Inuit Tapirit Kanatami

IYH: It's Your Health

KSDPP: Kahnawake Schools Diabetes Prevention Project

KT: Knowledge Translation

LLSC: Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of Canada

MAHC: McGill Aboriginal Healing Clinic

MCC: Medical Council of Canada

MFN CAHR: Manitoba First Nations Centre for Aboriginal Health Research

MHRG: Mi'kmaq Health Research Group

MJFF: Michael J. Fox Foundation for parkinson's disease

MLA: Medical Library Association

MNC: Metis National Council

MOHLTC: Ministry Of Health and Long Term Care

MS: Multiple Sclerosis

MSFHR: Michael Smith Foundation of Health Research

MUHC: McGill University Health Centre

MYST: McGill Youth Study Team

NAAF: National Aboriginal Achievement Foundation

NACCHO: National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation

NADACA: Native Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselling Association

NADD: Novel Approaches to Drug Discovery

NAHO: National Aboriginal Health Organization

NCADI: National Clearinghouse for Alcohol and Drug Information

NCCAH: National Collaborating Centre for Aboriginal Health

NCE: Networks of Centres of Excellence of canada

NEAC: National Ethics Advisory Committee - New Zealand

NEAR BC: Network Environments for Aboriginal Research British Columbia

NET: New Emerging Teams

NFB: National Film Board of canada

NGC: National Guideline Clearinghouse

NICWA: National Indian Child Welfare Association

NIH: National Institutes of Health

NIMBY: Not In My BackYard

NITHA: Northern Inter-Tribal Health Authority

NMHA: Native Mental Health Association

NMHRT: Native Mental Health Research Team

NNADAP: National Native Alcohol and Drug Abuse Program

NNAPF: National Native Addictions Partnership Foundation

NOSM: Northern Ontario School of Medicine

NSD-PFC: NeuroSciences Division of the canadian physiotherapy association and the Physiotherapy Foundation of Canada

NWAC: Native Women's Association of Canada

OALE: Outdoor Adventure Leadership Experience

OCAP: Ownership, Control, Access and Possession

OGS: Ontario Graduate Scholarship program

OGTT: Oil and Gas aboriginal Trades and Technology

OISE: Ontario Institute for Studies in Education

OMIM: Online Mendelian Inheritence in Man database

PABC: Physiotherapy Association of British Columbia

PAGC: Prince Albert Grand Council

PaM: Para el Mundo

PAR: Participatory Action Research

PARC: Prairie Adaptation Research Collaboration

PBDE: PolyBrominated Diphenyl Ether

PD: Parkinson's Disease

PHAC: Public Health Agency of Canada

PLoS: Public Library of Science medicine

PMC: PubMed Central

PRAM: Participatory Research at McGill

PRE: interagency advisory Panel on Research Ethics

PSAB: Procurement Srategy for Aboriginal Business

PSIF: Physicians' Services Incorporated Foundation

PTO: Political Territory Organization

PTSD: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

RAMQ: Régie de l'Assurance Maladie du Québec

RAP: Research Affiliate Program

RCAP: Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples

RDC: Research Data Centres

RFP: Requests For Proposals

RHS: Regional Health Survey

RN: Registered Nurse

RNG: Research Network Grants

RRHAN: Red Road Hiv/Aids Network

SBHAC: Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus Association of Canada

SCE: cihr - Standing Committee on Ethics

SFU: Simon Fraser University

SHRF: Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation

SIEC: Suicide Information and Education Centre

SMAHHRP: Seeking Models for Aboriginal Health & Human Resources

SMI: Severe Mental Illness

SPHERU: Saskatchewan Population Health and Evaluation Research Unit

SRC: Saskatchewan Research Council

SRCFC: Scottish Rite Charitable Foundation of Canada

SRO: Special Research Opportunity grants

TBA: To Be Announced

TBD: To Be Determined

TCPS: Tri-Council Policy Statement

TEK: Traditional Ecological Knowledge

TIFRC: Tungasuuvingat Inuit Family Resource Centre

TRIP: Turning Research Into Practice

U of R: University of Regina

U of S: University of Saskatchewan

U of T: University of Toronto

UBC: University of British Columbia

UCCB: University College of Cape Breton

UN: United Nations

UNBC: University of Northern British Columbia

UNSI: Union of Nova Scotia Indians

UNYA: Urban Native Youth Association

UQAM: Université du Québec à Montréal

USIC: Understanding the Strengths of Indigenous Communities

UVIC: University of VICtoria

VIHA: Vancouver Island Health Authority

WGIFS: Working Group on Indigenous Food Sovereignty

WHC: Wikwemikong Health Centre

WHO: World Health Organization

YIHR: York Institute for Health Research