Connecting researchers with communities, Indigenous organizations, and NWT health research priorities
Hotıì ts'eeda is a research support centre for community members, organizations, and researchers involved in NWT health and health research. Hotıì ts'eeda connects researchers with communities and Indigenous organizations, to support recognition of NWT health research priorities, and develop a health system that is culturally competent and inclusive of Indigenous methodologies and ways of knowing.
“Hotıì t’seeda” is a Tłı̨chǫ language phrase. It refers to peace and well-being in mind, body and spirit, and about moving beyond diplomacy to true collaboration so that when we part ways we leave each other in a state of grace. Click here for a short audio clip on how to pronounce Hotıì ts'eeda.
Hotıì ts'eeda's vision is to support health research and training that is rooted in Dene Nàowo (Dene knowledge), Inuvialuit and Métis knowledge and responds to the needs of patients, communities and governments. The organization exists to revitalize and celebrate culture, improve capacity for individuals and families and support taking an evidence-based approach to policy. It is about moving control and ownership of research back to Indigenous peoples and communities.
Research priorities in the NWT are directly linked to its history. To conduct health research in the NWT that history must be understood in a context that promotes improvement of the survival, dignity and well-being of Indigenous peoples. These priorities are anchored in specific rights outlined in the United Nations Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2007 and supported by Canada in 2016.
- Involve Indigenous people and community members in all stages of health research.
- Facilitate health research that responds to the needs of the communities being researched.
- Help make sure research results and evidence influence and inform health policy making.
- Build health research and health professional capacity in the NWT.
- Promote and support cultural competency in health systems and health research.
- Connect Indigenous communities, researchers, policy makers and other stakeholders to build positive and impactful relationships that will lead to better health programs and better health across the NWT.
Hotıì ts'eeda is funded by the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CIHR) as a SPOR (Strategy for Patient-Oriented Research) Support Unit. It is embedded within the Tłı̨chǫ Government. As an organization it is guided by an independent governing council that includes a majority of Indigenous government members from across the NWT and a Tłı̨chǫ Government senior advisor. Hotıì ts'eeda personnel are embedded within four NWT Indigenous governments: Tłı̨chǫ Government; Inuvialuit Regional Corporation; Délı̨nę Got'ı̨nę Government; and, Gwich’in Tribal Council. Staff work under the direction of a scientific director.
- Identify research needs with communities and connect communities to researchers and funders.
- Cultivate meaningful partnerships between researchers, individuals and communities.
- Support culturally competent research behaviour.
- Ensure research results are transferred to community partners and health policy decision-makers.
- Support access to NWT health research data.
- Champion Indigenous research methodologies.
The Strategy for Patient Oriented Research (SPOR) is a coalition of federal, provincial and territorial partners led by CIHR. Support units are located in most Canadian provinces and territories. Hotıì ts'eeda has a unique focus on Indigenous health and research, and regards patient partners as Indigenous communities and community members. SPOR Support Units work toward research-based improvements to the health care system in response to local needs identified by community members as key partners, by:
- engaging patients (NWT community members) as partners in research;
- ensuring that health research is relevant to patient (NWT community member) and policy-maker priorities; and,
- ensuring research results are used to improve health care systems and practices.