For more than 25 years FNIGC has been collecting data with First Nations communities using an approach that’s built on an inherent respect for data sovereignty, as embodied by the First Nations principles of OCAP®. At the core of our data gathering efforts is the First Nations Regional Health Survey (RHS), our flagship survey that has been a constant in First Nations communities since 2008.
Now, after nearly five years the RHS is back in communities with its latest iteration: RHS Phase 4. Our Quebec Regional Partners were first in the field over the winter in the communities of Wendake and Essipit, which followed months of preparation and training with their Knowledge Gatherers.
The Quebec team had to train new staff on the proper data collection techniques, as well as newer data collection initiatives which includes a new online option now available to survey respondents.
FNIGC and its Regional Partners are committed to being community focused, and as such the Quebec region has engaged in onboarding local community members to assist with data collection within the community.
This includes hiring new Community Liaison Officers to help participants navigate the survey process whether it is in-person or online. These positions are filled by members of the communities so that survey participants will feel more comfortable engaging with the data collection process. This also allows communities to use their own capacities to support the work of rolling out RHS Phase 4, which will be key to the successful roll out of the RHS across the country over the next two years.
The RHS is the first, and only, national First Nations led health survey. The RHS involves First Nations working together in collecting information from First Nations people living on reserve and in Northern communities based on both western and Traditional understandings of health and well-being.
Over the years, the RHS has become a key source of reliable information about life in First Nations communities that is used in the creation of many programs and services by Health Canada, and by communities themselves.
Stay tuned to FNIGC’s News & Events page for future updates about the RHS Phase 4 as it continues to roll out in First Nations communities across the country.