Tag Archives: health

Raven’s Children II: Aboriginal Youth Health in BC

Raven’s Children and Raven’s Children II were both published by the McCreary Centre Society (MCS).  MCS is a nongovernment, non-profit organization involved in improving the health of B.C. youth through research, education and community-based projects

In 1992, MCS conducted the first Adolescent Health Survey (AHS) with close to 16,000 youth in schools throughout B.C.  In 1998, MCS conducted the second AHS with approx 26,000 students.  In 2003, MCS conducted the 3rd AHS with over 30,500 youth.  Raven’s Children II, combines the data from responses of more than 4,800 Aboriginal students who took part in province-wide youth health surveys in 1992, 1998 and 2003.

The report was written under the direction of Kim van der Woerd of the Namgis First Nation.  Kim is a Ph.D. Candidate at Simon Fraser University.  Here are some interesting findings from the 2003 AHS that was published in 2005:

  • Most Aboriginal students rate their health as good or excellent.
  • Most Aboriginal students feel strongly connected to their families and school.
  • Nearly two-thirds want to continue their education beyond high school.
  • Almost three-quarters regularly participate in organized extracurricular activities.

The authors of Raven’s Children II noted that while Aboriginal youth have made some progress in rates alcohol consumption, smoking, pregnancy, there are issues that continue to pose a significant challenge for youths, parents, educators, Aboriginal leaders, and government: Problem Areas –

  • One in five Aboriginal students experienced racial discrimination.
  • Too many Aboriginal youth think about or attempt suicide and rates have not improved in the past decade.
  • Too many Aboriginal students, especially girls, continue to experience sexual and physical abuse.
  • Fewer youth reported feeling safe at school in 2003 than in 1998.

Raven’s II is a very comprehensive report, but it’s also very easy to read.  I recommend it for anyone who is searching for up-to-date and extensive information about the health of BC’s Aboriginal children

NAHO (National Aboriginal Health Organization)

I know that Joseph posted a link to the National Aboriginal Health Organization (NAHO) in relation to its mentorship program for youth
but aside from that great program, the site offers a wealth of health related info for aboriginal youth to share.
An additional link on the site that I found particularly interesting addresses the proper protocols to follow when interviewing Elders.
It is good to see that those overseeing the site have recognized the importance of ensuring that these protocols are transfered to the
youth; there is a recognition that there are many Aboriginal youth living in urban centers who may not have had these traditional practices
passed on to them.
While this site started as a Health site and includes info on HPV and natural Aboriginal healing practices, it also has excellent links to number of resources for scholarships and bursaries.

Module 4- Aboriginal youth and health careers

This video could be used within the classroom in relation to career options for youth. It provides vignettes and actual interviews of people from various aboriginal communities who currently work within the health care system. In doing so, the video also provides youth information on courses needed at the high school level and how one would go about attaining the necessary skills. A great deal of the focus is on attaining good skills within the math and science subjects.

Health Careers – Industry in the Classroom Series from First Nation Help Desk on Vimeo.

Internet use and indigenous women


This research paper written for the National Network for Aboriginal Mental Health Research in 2005. It addresses the question of whether or not the internet is a useful tool for indigenous women living in remote areas in Canada, Australia, and New Zealand to access health resource. This article discusses the digital divide and how it affects indigenous communities. Based on the statistics presented, there is an apparent digital divide between on-reserve Aboriginal population versus the rest of Canada. There is also a divide between the Canadian population and Northern Aboriginal communities in terms of access to the internet. The article explains how the internet is beneficial to the health of aboriginal women and their families. The author also mentions the challenges of having internet technology implemented into aboriginal communities as there are concerns such as language barriers, cultural bias, and fears of assimilation.