Community Wellness Worker Program
The Community Wellness Worker (CWW) Program is funded by the province through the Aboriginal Healing and Wellness Strategy (AHWS). The Strategy supports holistic approaches to the promotion of healthy living and the prevention of family violence. Community Wellness Workers in sixteen communities put the needs of the local Métis community first through the implementation of client driven services to reduce family violence and the promotion of healthy lifestyles through culture-based programming.
Community Wellness Workers assist clients in identify concerns and assist them in developing action plans to address the concerns. This is achieved by sharing appropriate information with health and social agencies and through community events like crisis intervention workshops, sharing circles and community outreach that educates and promotes cultural awareness and illness prevention. Whenever possible Métis specific cultural approaches are integrated into the programs delivered.
Community Wellness Workers are located in 18 MNO Community Councils:
- Georgian Bay
- North Bay
- Sault Ste Marie
- Fort Frances
- Thunder Bay
- Owen Sound
- Port McNicol
- Sault Ste Marie
In addition to the services provided by the Community Wellness Coordinators provide client-driven services like:
- Assisting clients to access services.
- Providing advocacy to support the securing of medical assistance services.
- Providing referrals to emergency shelters or transitional housing.
- Providing referrals to anger-management or treatment programs.
- Providing referrals to the MNO Mental Health Program.
- Providing advocacy for those dealing with the court system.
The Coordinators also provide participant-based services related to reducing family violence through fitness and recreation, walking groups, nutrition or foot-care clinics/workshops as well as Healthy Eating/Community Gardens. Holistic approaches to good health also include traditional ceremonies that promote stress-relief and gatherings like the Harvest Meal that promote traditional family activities and promotes healthy eating.
The Coordinators also promote information sharing between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal organizations like mental health centres, shelters, and treatment centres to increase client access to local services.
Health Policy Analyst Program
The Health Policy Analyst Program facilitates and coordinates activities that assist the MNO in designing holistic provincial, regional and community level programs by, among other things, identifying existing and emerging healing and wellness concerns, and conducting policy discussions which help inform decisions regarding program improvements.
Community Development Support Worker
The Community Development Support Worker program provides community-based services like workshops, presentations and team building activities focused on developing and enhancing skills and capacity of front line workers. The training ranges from how to work with computer programs and spreadsheets to how to update policy and procedures. The importance of effective communication internally and externally is underscored with training in how to prepare effective presentations which incorporate Métis cultural teachings. Providing this training at the community level helps ensure program goals are realized.