Family Violence Initiative

COMPENDIUM OF PROMISING PRACTICES TO REDUCE VIOLENCE AND INCREASE SAFETY OF ABORIGINAL WOMEN IN CANADA – COMPENDIUM ANNEX: DETAILED PRACTICE DESCRIPTIONS

HISTORICAL LEGACY

Healing and Renewal of Family Roles and Responsibilities

Program name:

Suqqakkut

Organization:

Ilisaqsivik Society

Location:

Clyde River, Nunavut

Target Group:

Everyone.

Contact Name:

Jakob Gearhard Executive Director

Phone:

867-924-6565

Email:

jakobmg@ilisaqsivik.ca

Website:

N/A

Program Overview
History:

The Suqqakkut society was initiated in 1997. There are typically between 25-30 projects running at one time. There are 60 staff employed by the organization - most are part time.

Program Description
Goals & Objectives:

To promote community wellness and sensitivity towards culture, reducing vulnerability to violence.

Traditional/Indigenous ways:

Counselling is traditional in nature. Getting help from Elders is the best way to get help. All services are in Inuktitut. The teachings help people to live in the community in a good way. It is very important for the justice committee to use traditional ways of justice, teaching the old ways of dealing with community issues. Family togetherness is a very big thing in this culture. The victims of violence can go on the land to focus on the issues they are facing in a natural way. The custom is to go hunting, and fishing and this is where the counsellors promote awareness of anything that involves a better life.

Components of program:

The holistic approach to wellness enables the facility to provide programming for every age group: from seniors, to early childhood education. There are two centres. The first one, a family resource centre that is a one-stop shopping facility for clients. Services include: a community justice committee, access to Elders, a diabetes program, access to land-based retreats, a school breakfast program, and provides public service announcements for the Department of Health Canada and the National Aboriginal Health Organization. The second centre is a Society organization that was formed to address youth crime, suicide, and family violence. Elders and counsellors work together to promote healing and well-being in clients accessing the services. The criteria for support depend on whether the problems have been occurring for some time. The outreach worker provides intervention support and will maintain strict confidentiality if that is what the victims want. Weekly radio programs address community issues, such as family violence. There is a two hour radio show that many people listen to. Those who may not be willing to seek help in person at the centre can listen to the teachings on the radio and help themselves or their family and friends. It is a very effective communication tool in this community.

Services/How they work:

Services are provided on site at the facility and at various locations in the community and on the land.

Funding:

N/A

Relationships and Stakeholders
Involvement of Target Groups:

Group workshops with the Elders and justice committee give the direction, accountability and legitimacy for the projects of the Society; it is a community-based model, using a communal approach to success and failures that is empowered by the collective.

Partners:

RCMP.

Other relationships:

N/A

Details of Program Evaluation
Evaluation:

An evaluation has been completed.

Highlights of Evaluation Findings:

The report was not made available publicly, and no specific results can be provided.

Program Outcomes
Measures of Success:

Success is measured by how many clients noticeably benefit from the services the facility provides.

Achievements:

Won Tides Canada Top 10 of 2011 for its programming initiatives - http://tidescanada.org/about/tides-top-10/tides-top-10-for-2011/ilisaqsivik/. Through the interactions of the Justice Committee people are more open toward each other and trying to help each other through volunteering at the centre.

Challenges:

Obtaining funding. Limits amount of permanent staff available from year to year which affects what kind of services program can offer in any given year. There is a shortage of space to run all of the programs.

Things to Know to Replicate
Replication Advice:

The program is considered replicable. A focus on the language of the community (especially in the north) is essential to have as part of the program. Community involvement is also necessary to the program's success.

Resources:

Adequate funding, properly trained staff and facility space for the programming would be necessary to ensure the program's success.

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