Morning Star Lodge Research Assistant presents at University of Calgary's Cumming School of Medicine

MSL researcher Louise BigEagle was invited to attend an Indigenous health course on the subject of brain health at the University of Calgary’s Cumming School of Medicine. Louise spoke about MSLs work on the Canadian Indigenous Cognitive Assessment (CICA) project including the Nakota translations assessment tool and the process of involving community for its development. It was an interesting session and experience to network with other professionals, learning about their work on Indigenous brain health.

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Morning Star Lodge CABHI Project Featured in Regina Leader-Post

Orval Spencer’s 86-year-old mother Edna suffers from dementia, but he’s noticed a change since she started using an iPad with Indigenous language apps.

Orval Spencer’s 86-year-old mother Edna suffers from dementia, but he’s noticed a change since she started using an iPad with Indigenous language apps.

Morning Star Lodge is incredibly proud of this project that we are doing with the Centre for Aging and Brain Health Innovation. Please visit the link below to read more about our work with community members showing symptoms of dementia and technology usage.

CRAC Meeting: April 18, 2019

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On April 18, 2019 Morning Star Lodge attended a Community Research Advisory Committee (CRAC) Meeting with community members of the File Hills Qu’Appelle Tribal Council (FHQTC) to discuss our ongoing partnership and research. Morning Star Lodge presented on the Collective Consensual Data Analytic Process (CCDAP), and interviews with the community members were also conducted for the purpose of CCDAP Toolkit Video currently in production at Morning Star Lodge. Other Morning Star Lodge project updates were presented including the Centre for Aging and Brain Health Innovation project (CABHI) and the Canadian HIV Women’s Sexual and Reproductive Health Cohort Study (CHIWOS). Morning Star Lodge is preparing for our next meeting with the CRAC Committee on May 8, 2019.

Morning Star Lodge Project Featured in Catalyst Magazine

Carlton university school of journalism and communication

Carlton university school of journalism and communication

Funded by Toronto’s Centre for Brain Health and Innovation, the project is a partnership between Morning Star Lodge and File Hills Qu’Appelle Tribal Council to see whether regular use of language apps might reduce dementia progression in First Nations adults with the disease.

Morning Star Lodge CABHI Project Featured in Canadian Healthcare Technology Magazine

Morning Star Lodge and CABHI Participants during the first workshop on March 16, 2019

Morning Star Lodge and CABHI Participants during the first workshop on March 16, 2019

Morning Star Lodge is ecstatic to announce that the project “Testing locally developed language apps to reduce caregiver stress and promote "aging in place" as it relates to dementia in Indigenous populations”, supported by The Baycrest-led Centre for Aging + Brain Health Innovation (CABHI) has been featured in the April 2019 issue of Canadian Healthcare Technology: Canada’s Magazine For Managers and Users of Information Systems In Healthcare. An update on the project has been featured on page 10 of the issue. You may view it below:

CRAC Meeting: February 7th, 2019

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On February 7th, 2019 Morning Star Lodge attended a Community Research Advisory Committee (CRAC) Meeting with community members of the File Hills Qu’Appelle Tribal Council (FHQTC) to discuss the next steps of several projects within the scope of Morning Star Lodge’s research. Morning Star Lodge is always grateful for the guidance of community members and highly values the input of our research partners.

The meeting began with Morning Star Lodge posing the question to community members, “What is the most apparent threat to the health of your communities?” The answers to this question provided Morning Star with valuable insight into the determinants of health that Elders and community members view as the most pressing concerns. Community members shared that addictions were a common health threat in their communities, and that while alcoholism is apparent and serious, crystal meth and prescription medication use are the more threatening substance abuse issues within the community. The CRAC attributed these substance abuse issues to adults providing access to children to prescription medication by selling it to them, and the youth of the community having limited access to employment or recreational opportunities, therefore living inactive and unstructured lifestyles.

Alternatively, the CRAC members also expressed that the aging populations of their communities are becoming increasingly exposed to chronic conditions. Although diabetes was reported to be the most common of these, the members described that it is commonly paired with other comorbidities such as cancer, hepatitis C, HIV, high blood pressure, and heart disease.

Morning Star Lodge continued the meeting with updates on a variety of their projects, including CABHI, AGE-WELL, Kotawe, Macipiciw, and Digging Deep. The CRAC provided invaluable insight into the development of these projects and Morning Star is always grateful for the guidance that they provide. Finally, Morning Star Lodge held a demonstration of the FHQTC Language Apps for use on Apple iPads to be utilized for the CABHI project in regards to aging Indigenous populations displaying symptoms of dementia.

Treaty 4 Elders' Gathering Photos

The 2019 Treaty 4 Elders Gathering, held on January 22 at the Treaty 4 Governance Centre, was formed to assemble Elders so that they may communicate in their languages and address the Treaty Protection and Crown Relations. Elders had the opportunity to participate in roundtable discussions to share their feedback and advice. The gathering began by lifting the pipes, praying for good relations and a positive outcome towards the topic. 38 Nations came together and Morning Star Lodge (MSL) had the opportunity to sit amongst elders to listen to the discussion regarding the importance of respecting treaties made more than 145 years ago.

Traditionally, we have always turned to our elders for their guidance, wisdom, and leadership in our nations. MSL recognizes the importance of this practice and respects our Elders’ leadership, and by doing so it was important for the team to fellowship with Treaty 4 Elders and community members at the gathering. The MSL team handed out posters for the Centre for Aging and Brain Health Innovation (CABHI) project call for participants. This was a wonderful time to engage with Elders and listen to their advice for what they would like to see in the future when addressing Indigenous health research.

See below to view the photographs that Morning Star Lodge had taken of the event:

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CCDAP Training

Morning Star Lodge CCDAP Training

Morning Star Lodge CCDAP Training

Morning Star Lodge Staff underwent training to perform the Collective Consensual Data Analytic Procedure (CCDAP), a data analysis method developed by Dr Judith Bartlett. The team completed this training to analyze data collected from our projects in a manner that is appropriate for community-based research. We are incredibly excited to serve our communities better with this new and innovative method.

Morning Star Lodge CCDAP Training

Morning Star Lodge CCDAP Training

Annual Elders' Gathering

FIRST NATIONS UNIVERSITY OF CANADA MULTIPURPOSE ROOM

FIRST NATIONS UNIVERSITY OF CANADA MULTIPURPOSE ROOM

Morning Star Lodge will be in attendance of the Annual Elders’ Gathering 2019, hosted by First Nations University of Canada in partnership with the National Centre for Collaboration in Indigenous Education. The gathering is to be held on February 19th, 2019 and February 20th, 2019. The two days are to contain ceremonies, talking circles and numerous sessions provided by Elders from across Canada and the United States. Morning Star Lodge’s Guiding Elder, Betty McKenna, is to present a session at the First Nations University, Room 2007 at 11:00 a.m.

Tipis locaTED AT THE FIRST NATIONS UNIVERSITY OF CANADA

Tipis locaTED AT THE FIRST NATIONS UNIVERSITY OF CANADA

Welcome, Dawn Martin Hill!

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Morning Star Lodge would like to extend a warm welcome to Dawn Martin Hill as the newest member of our team! Dawn holds a PhD Cultural Anthropology and is one of the original founders of the Indigenous Studies Program at McMaster University. Her primary research for over two decades is working with youth and overall her research includes: environmental – water and community health research, focus on governance, gender equity and spiritual traditions, traditional medicine and well-being, Indigenous Knowledge and ways of knowing methodologies and pedagogy. Dawn’s education, experience, and knowledge will be a gift that Morning Star Lodge is truly grateful for and we are excited to learn from her mentorship.

Treaty 4 Elders Gathering

Morning Star Lodge will be in attendance of the Treaty 4 Elders Gathering on Tuesday, January 22nd. The event will take place at the Treaty Four Governance Centre, Treaty Four Reserve Grounds #77, Fort Qu'Appelle, Saskatchewan.

The Pipe Ceremony will begin at 8:00 a.m., followed by an Opening Prayer at 10:00 a.m. and finally Lunch at 12:00 p.m. 

Please see the poster below for further details and we hope to see you there!

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Call for Participants: CABHI

Call for Participants: CABHI

Morning Star Lodge, through Dr. Carrie Bourassa, is seeking File Hills Qu’Appelle Tribal Council (FHQTC) to assist us in the examination of the use of technology for Indigenous people living with dementia in the reserve communities of FHQTC community members. The aim is to review the application of technology and locally-developed language apps to aging Indigenous populations in Saskatchewan as it relates to quality of life, dementia, caregiver perspectives, Aging in Place, and the cultural significance of these topics.

Our objective is to examine the lived experience of Indigenous people living with dementia and their primary caregivers to understand the role of Indigenous culture, knowledge, spirituality and ceremony that are relevant to dementia, technology, language, and Aging in Place.

For this project, our participants must:

  • Be an Indigenous person living with dementia over the age of 18.

  • Have a primary caregiver that is preferably a community or family member.

  • Currently reside in a File Hills Qu’Appelle Tribal Council community or be originally from one of these communities.

    If you would like to participate in this project, or have questions, you may contact:

    Marlin Legare- Research Assistant Morning Star Lodge

    (306) 584-4462

    marlin.legare@usask.ca

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Condolences To The O'Watch Family

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Morning Star Lodge would like to send our condolences to the O'Watch family and the community of Carry the Kettle First Nation. Freda O'Watch has worked with Morning Star Lodge in many capacities. She was a part of the Canadian Indigenous Cognitive Assessment (CICA) project and assisted with translating a dementia assessment tool from English to Nakota. She was involved in our Community Research Advisory Committee (CRAC) and most recently the Water Economics, Policy, and Governance Network (WEPGN) session that took place at the All Nations Healing Hospital. Freda was an amazing lady to work with, we will miss her warm hugs and seeing her friendly smile. Pinamaya Freda for all your great work with Morning Star Lodge and the community we serve.

"It’s said when a life giver leaves their earthly body, communities build a fire and make offerings and plead to her spirit to not forget us with a promise to celebrate their lifeways and teachings - our way of not forgetting them and passing her legacy onward to future young ones. Migwetch (the words of my Anishnabae ancestor grandmothers)" - Elder Betty McKenna

If you would like to pay respects, show support, or view information regarding the services, please follow the link below: 

https://www.dignitymemorial.com/obituaries/wolseley-sk/freda-owatch-8108188

Winter Solstice Ceremony

Morning Star Lodge will be in attendance of the Winter Solstice Ceremony, held on December 21st, 2018 at the All Nations Hope Network, Regina. The ceremony will begin at 9:00 a.m. with a pipe ceremony and will continue with ceremony, self-care appointments and a feast until 4:00 p.m. All communities are invited.

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Digging Deep: Examining the Root Causes of HIV and AIDS Among Aboriginal Women Final Report

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The final report for Digging Deep: Examining the Root Causes of HIV and AIDS Among Aboriginal Women is out today for World AIDS Day. This project began in 2014 and concluded in 2018 and involved a collaboration between Morning Star Lodge and All Nations Hope Network (ANHN). The report features direct quotations from the Indigenous women who participated in the project and aims to describe the role of colonization in current HIV rates and identify culturally appropriate services available and needed for HIV positive Indigenous women. More information about Aboriginal AIDS Awareness Week at ANHN can be found here: http://allnationshope.ca/event-calendar/list/all

The final report for Digging Deep is available here:

Call for Participants

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Call for Participants

Morning Star Lodge, through Dr. Carrie Bourassa, is seeking File Hills Qu’Appelle Tribal Council (FHQTC) community members to assist us in the examination and identification of the cultural significance of water governance and water resource management to Indigenous women. The aim is to use these perspectives to create culturally appropriate water governance models for Indigenous communities in Saskatchewan. Focus groups begin at the All Nations Healing Hospital, Fort Qu’Appelle on Thursday, December 6th, 2018 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Our objective is to examine the lived experience of Indigenous people, with particular focus on Indigenous women, to understand the role of Indigenous culture, knowledge, spirituality and ceremony that are relevant to water resource management. We will help them to develop ways of learning about water economics, water policy, and community-based solutions that are culturally safe. Our specific objectives include:

•To examine and understand the lived experience of Indigenous people and their roles on water resource management; and

•To examine and understand the aspects of Indigenous culture, knowledge, spirituality and ceremony that is related to improving the quality and access to water in their communities. These two domains will be explored in relation to policies and practices that influence access to appropriate water resource management (e.g., policy issues, geography, role of Indigenous women). For this project, participants must:

•Be an Indigenous woman over the age of 18. Women are preferred, but men are welcome, too.

•Currently reside in a File Hills Qu’Appelle Tribal Council community.

•Have an interest in water governance policies and water resource management within their communities.

•Participants will receive an honorarium and mileage coverage for their time.

If you would like to participate in this project, or have questions, you may contact:

Marlin Legare

Research Assistant

Morning Star Lodge

(306)584-4462

marlin.legare@usask.com