Lona’tshistanet (Fire Keepers)
Lona’tshistanet is a wellness program, for Oneida youth and their families that combines Indigenous healing with Western practices. It is a series of traditional cultural Indigenous learning activities, spanning from April 2021 to April 2022, adapted to intergenerational family participant groups to improve connectedness to culture and mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The twelve lessons in this program adapt the “Two-Eyed Seeing/Learning” approach which combines traditional Indigenous therapeutic (healing) values with evidence-based intervention and prevention strategies. Traditional and land-based activities led by Indigenous knowledge keepers/mentors weave traditional learning with CBT and DBT skills that support youth mental health.
A week long summer camp in August was part of the program that provided a wide range of skills building and cultural immersion activities.
Funding for this initiative is provided by Mental Health Research Canada (MHRC) and the Centre of Excellence (COE). Events are held on the last Thursday of each month for 3 to 5 hours for the duration of the program and include:
- Learning Dance and Song of the Haudenosaunee
- Creation Stories
- Making Traditional Foods
- Haudenosaunee Art
- Naming Ceremony
- Eagle Dance Ceremony
- Sweat Lodge and Fire
- Personal Bundle
- Making the Water Drum/Social Songs
- Graduation Ceremony
The events are facilitated by LFCC’s Indigenous Consultant, Kahawani Doxtator and externally evaluated by Dr. Jason Brown from Western University in the Department of Counselling Psychology program.
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Child & Youth Advocacy Centre for London-Middlesex
This project, funded by Department of Justice Victims Fund, developed a Child & Youth Advocacy Centre (CYAC) for London-Middlesex. The CYAC is a co-location service for children and youth who have been physically and/or sexually abused. This endeavour was a collaboration of many service providers, including but not limited to:
- Children’s Aid Society of London and Middlesex
- London Family Court Clinic
- London Police Service
- Southwestern Ontario Aboriginal Health Access Centre
- Strathroy-Caradoc Police Service
- St. Joseph’s Health Care London
- Vanier Children’s Services
- Victim Services of Middlesex-London
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) CONNECT
FASD CONNECT was a peer-mentorship based initiative that connects parents/caregivers in need of support to two trained peer mentors with lived experience in the London area. Parent peer-support models of service have been shown to reduce social isolation and increase confidence and coping strategies for those receiving the service. This model complements the provincial FASD strategy which is focused on supporting children, youth, and families affected by FASD.
Poverty Reduction Strategy
This was a 3-year project that introduced service coordination to justice-involved youth who are living in poverty. In Phase I, this project had provided a descriptive analysis of youth, their circumstance(s) and familial situation. Phase II determined whether the service coordination has been effective and to what degree in helping these youth to establish new trajectories for their lives including increased involvement in education, employment and training, and reduction in their indices of poverty.
The DELTA Publication series is funded by the Department of Justice Canada and produced by the London Family Court Clinic. The series focuses on family violence and is designed to assist professionals in the fields of social services, justice, and education in their work with families. The series is also available to families who are in need of information when they are experiencing violence within their family.
In the series, new publications address information for Crown Attorneys on how to assist young witnesses/victims in court proceedings; online violence, and resiliency. Updated versions of previously released LFCC publications are also scheduled for release, including those previously titled Helping an Abused Woman, Helping a Child Be a Witness in Court, and Helping Children Thrive.
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD)
The project was focused on building upon the efforts of the FASD London Region Coalition to develop of Community of Practice as well as coordinating capacity building, education and training, and formalizing internal policies for the FASD London Region Coalition members. Policy changes and training opportunities were focused on understanding the impact of prenatal alcohol exposure and the provision of a FASD-informed approach to service delivery from intake to case management. This project was funded by the Ontario Trillium Foundation.
Funded by the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services, this was a 2-year project to develop a culturally-appropriate framework to aid in the assessment of FNIM youth who are involved/at-risk of involvement in the criminal justice system.
Funded by the Department of Justice Aboriginal Justice Directorate (AJD), this project developed an eight-week program to support N’Amerind Friendship Centre , an Indigenous-serving organization, in building capacity in order to address the FNIM youth served in more culturally-appropriate ways. This project was in partnership with N’Amerind and Western University.
The London Family Court Clinic has undergone a project to renovate the portion of the clinic where clients are seen to ensure the environment is developmentally-appropriate for all clients. The new rooms provide optimal environments where play, therapy and assessment can occur for children, youth and emerging adults with various developmental disabilities. Renovations were done by Norlon Builders of London.
Research to inform the renovations was undertaken by a six-member occupational therapy team at Western University. The designs are inspired by a number of factors: evidence-based principles of multi-sensory or the Snoezelen concept; and, the Alert program that is geared to promoting self-regulation and relaxation as well as augmenting executive functioning.
Occupational therapy and speech language pathology will represent two new enhancements to the multi-disciplinary team (MDT) at LFCC, further strengthening both the holistic approach to the way each individual is assessed and understood, and the coordination of an associated range of services.
This project was funded by the Ontario150 Community Capital Program Grant administrated by the Ontario Trillium Foundation, Department of Justice Canada, and Employment and Social Development Canada.
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Women Enabling Access and Learning Through Helping/Healing (WEALTH)
WEALTH is a peer-mentorship pilot program designed to support women who live in poverty, to experience parenting-focused, functional relationships with two other women with lived experience. Funded by the Ontario Trillium Foundation, this project is designed to help people have the skills and knowledge to achieve greater financial independence.