All My Relations Research Network

All My Relations is a research network directed by Dr. Rod McCormick (Kanienkehaka), BC Innovation Chair of Aboriginal Health at Thompson Rivers University. The overarching goal of the research network is to develop a national Aboriginal family and community health research and training centre to identify, research and further advance and implement best practices in Aboriginal family and community health and healing. The centre will be designed to deliver training for up to 250 community-based mental health facilitators across Canada, serving as a long-term solution for the improvement of Aboriginal mental health outcomes.

Collaboration with Aboriginal communities

Aboriginal peoples have much to contribute to the transformation of Canada’s mental health system. However, many face barriers to their own healthcare needs. It is essential to work in partnership with Aboriginal communities to improve access to appropriate mental health services. This involves recognizing that Aboriginal peoples are best positioned to make decisions about the services their communities require. Closer collaboration with Aboriginal peoples is essential in order to ensure the development of culturally safe mental health services, grounded in Indigenous knowledge and experience.

National research and training centre

All My Relations will establish a national Aboriginal family and community health research and training network to identify, research and further develop and implement best practices in Aboriginal family and community health and healing.

Support for self-development and self-determination

All My Relations emphasizes Aboriginal potential and strengths, and supports partnerships, collaborations and sharing power. This strengths-based approach supports Aboriginal self-development and self-determination and represents a move away from focusing on deficit, failure and problems.

Aboriginal leadership at all levels

All My Relations values responsiveness and respect towards Aboriginal community wants and needs. We actively seek and listen to the voices of Aboriginal peoples about their strengths and needs, and how a research agenda can assist in the mission for improved mental health outcomes for their families. In the design and implementation, Aboriginal leadership will be present at all levels of decision-making.

Reach and impact

The training component of this initiative has the potential to reach at least 200,000 clients within four years, and to develop, train and support a national network of up to 250 Aboriginal community and family mental health facilitators.

Key outcomes
  • Aboriginal families seek earlier help for mental health problems.
  • Improved Aboriginal mental health and reduced disparities between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal.
  • Mental health services in Aboriginal communities that are easily accessed, family focused, culturally embedded, and have a strengths-based perspective.
  • More Aboriginal students and community members trained for careers in mental health.
  • Evidence-informed best practices in Aboriginal family and community health and healing, and facilitation.
A major contribution to TRU and the region

All My Relations aligns directly with the TRU Strategic planning and vision to be the university of choice for Aboriginal peoples, along with its commitment to indigenized higher education. This project also contributes directly to the TRU Strategic Priorities, including increased research capacity, intercultural understanding, student success, entrepreneurial capacity and sustainability. In addition, All My Relations supports the TRU Strategic Research Plan within Aboriginal understanding, education, health and diversity, and community and culture.

The network in the news

Health solutions for Attawapiskat must be long-term: experts — The Globe and Mail, April 17, 2016

Can short-term interventions help places like Attawapiskat? —, April 17, 2016

What’s behind the surge in suicide attempts among Canada’s indigenous population? — The Huffington Post, April 16, 2016

Attawapiskat: Flying in crisis teams after suicide attempts doesn’t work, expert says — Global News, April 11, 2016

Attawapiskat Chief says he’s homeless, needs more resources after spike in suicide attempts — Global BC, April 11, 2016