OKANAGAN NATION WELLNESS DECLARATION
To support a holistic approach to Health & Social Development which will promote self-sufficiency Okanagan Nation communities by integrating our traditional and cultural approaches to community wellness.
The Okanagan Nation Alliance Wellness has three main clusters: Health, Youth Mental Health and Child and Family. The ONA is currently providing, or is in the process of developing, a number of innovative Health and Social Programs for the Nation.
These include the following initiatives:
- Community Engagement Hub (CeH): The CeHs are groups of First Nations communities who have agreed to plan, collaborate, and communicate to meet their Nation’s health priorities.
- Okanagan Nation Health Plan: the ONA CEC mandated the development of a Health Plan to help identify strategies for addressing the health gaps and disparities. The anticipated outcome of the process was to identify priority items for urgent and transformative action. Then, by securing resources, forging partnerships and exercising jurisdiction over the land and the people, the Okanagan Nation Member Bands would apply cultural teachings and practices (ceremonies, traditional medicines & foods), to begin to narrow the health gaps and to ensure better outcomes for Syilx People.
- Shared Care Pathway: The overall objective is to improve Okanagan Nation members’ access to health services in the region.
- Navigating Mainstream Health: Cultural Saftey: to develop culturally relevant resources and curricula to assist the Syilx peoples in successfully navigating the complex and ever-changing mainstream health care system.
YOUTH MENTAL HEALTH
- The Okanagan Nation Response Team (ONRT): Was established in 2005 (with a mandate to “Assist individuals and communities to find healthy paths along which people choose life.”) The ONRT or Səxʷkənxit əlx (meaning “Those Who Help”) is a team of Okanagan front line workers who respond to crises in the community when they occur and deliver educational workshops. The team is built on the principal of “Okanagans helping Okanagans”.
- R’Native Voice: R’Native Voice was established in 2004 to support Aboriginal Youth in the Okanagan Territory. This program promotes teaching youth about their culture and history and assists youth to develop self-esteem and to make positive lifestyle choices.
- Aboriginal Child and Youth Wellness Program: ONA in partnership with the Ooknakane Friendship Centre, Aboriginal Wellness Coordinator (AWC) assists families to navigate the wellness health system to access services that they may require and to identify services available to families.
CHILD AND FAMILY
- Children and Family Services Initative
- Aboriginal Family Group Conferencing (AFGC) Program: AFGC recognizes and acknowledges the right and capacity of aboriginal families and communities to care for and plan for their children, through respecting and understanding Indigenous ways of being and knowing.
- Aboriginal Early Childhood Development