About the Circle
The Ontario Caring Advisory Circle (OCAC) guided the identification and development of culturally appropriate resources to support Indigenous residents in long-term care homes between April 2018 and March 2020. Membership of the OCAC was comprised of up to 11 members with wisdom and expertise in long-term care and Indigenous culture. Members were a mix from northern and southern regions of Ontario.
The OCAC created a five-pillar approach to their terms of reference. These five pillars formed the foundation of the work and represented the commitment, interest, and duties of the advisors.
Pillar One – Ensuring a cultural lens in all Ontario CLRI activities
Pillar Two – Identifying resources to fill gaps
Pillar Three – Ideas for education and training
Pillar Four – Identifying research projects
Pillar Five – Guidance for stakeholder outreach
The initial gathering of the OCAC took place on April 24, 2018 at the Toronto Birth Centre. At this gathering, the OCAC came together to plan their shared vision for the work ahead. Through process and spirit, the group’s terms of reference were birthed. The OCAC met several times a year via video/teleconference or face-to-face.
Since culturally appropriate imagery is important to the OCAC, the names of Indigenous artists living in Ontario were put into a hat during the October 24, 2018 face-to-face gathering at the Thunder Bay Art Gallery. Robert Kakegamic’s name was drawn and he was contacted to design and paint the OCAC’s logo to represent their spirit. Robert continues the Woodland School of Art tradition while including cultural values and old legends in vivid colours as part of the new way of presenting and expressing Indigenous identity. Robert lives in Sandy Lake, Ontario, a Swampy Cree-Ojibwa First Nations community.
Ontario Caring Advisory Circle Members
Seniors Health Advocate, SOAHAC; PhD Candidate, Western University; Caregiver
Director/Administrator, Sioux Lookout Meno Ya Win Health Centre (William “A” George Extended Care Unit)
Activities Manager, Tsi’ Nu: Yoyantle Na’ Tuhuwatisni (Oneida Long-Term Care Home)
Activities Director, Tsiionkwanonhso:te Long-Term Care Facility
Indigenous Health Specialist, North West Local Health Integration Network
Administrator, Tsiionkwanonhso:te Long-Term Care Facility
Traditional Programs Manager, Sioux Lookout Meno Ya Win Health Centre
Seniors Program Manager, Native Canadian Centre of Toronto
Administrator, Wikwemikong Nursing Home