COMPENDIUM OF PROMISING PRACTICES TO REDUCE VIOLENCE AND INCREASE SAFETY OF ABORIGINAL WOMEN IN CANADA – COMPENDIUM ANNEX: DETAILED PRACTICE DESCRIPTIONS
INTERACTIONS WITHIN COMMUNITIES
Changing Community Attitudes toward Violence
- Program name:
Oskayikisitothn – Aboriginal Women's and Children's Program
Strengthening the Spirit Committee
Calgary, Alberta /Siksika First Nation, Alberta
- Target Group:
Women and Men (18-68) and Children (6-12)
- Contact Name:
Laura Ducharme, Coordinator
This is a three year pilot project that began in March 2009 and will end in March of 2012.
- Goals & Objectives:
To increase safety and knowledge of historical trauma, cultural and intergenerational trauma, and intimate violence through a psycho-educational program.
- Traditional/Indigenous ways:
Local Elders are sought to be a part of the committee in order to provide a strong cultural component to the program.
- Components of program:
The program seeks to empower communities through the creation of a cultural domestic violence treatment program. The facilitators go to the community and build a committee made up of community members. Through a train the trainer program the community becomes able to facilitate, manage and find sustainable funding to keep their own uniquely designed program in operation.
- Services/How they work:
Services are rendered in the participating communities
Funding is provided from NTC Crime Prevention; and in kind donations from Homefront.
Relationships and Stakeholders
- Involvement of Target Groups:
Community committees collaborate with service agencies.
Partnerships vary from community to community. Each development is community specific.
- Other relationships:
Details of Program Evaluation
An evaluation has been completed.
- Highlights of Evaluation Findings:
The program was found to be one of the most comprehensive of its kind and follows the best practices in Alberta with regard to violence treatment committees and creating a standard of treatment in Alberta. The evaluation report is available at
- Measures of Success:
Through the numbers of facilitators trained and how many people have completed the program.
Some of the main accomplishments include the capacity that has been built, and that the facility has sustainable, comprehensive response teams. Successes include Siksika Nation received funding for a family violence response team, First Responding, because of collaborative work.
Obtaining funding. Women's programs have a high dropout rate. There is a challenge of clients having transportation to attend programs.
Things to Know to Replicate
- Replication Advice:
The program is considered replicable. Someone needs to do the coordination and smaller communities need training.
Adequate funding and staff to train community members are needed in order for the program to succeed.
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