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First Nations, Métis, Inuit Links


Gignul Non-Profit Housing Corporation
Gignul Non-Profit Housing Corporation is committed to a holistic and comprehensive approach to housing that includes both those Aboriginal people at risk of losing their housing, or those who are currently homeless.  Gignul, working in partnership with other Aboriginal organizations, focuses on both short and long term solutions, including supportive shelters to affordable, independent living.

Inuit Non-Profit Housing
This corporation offers rent-geared-to-income housing for Inuit families and singles living in the Ottawa area.  

Kagita Mikam Aboriginal Training and Services 
Kagita Mikam was established to provide a cooperative working relationship with all Aboriginal First Nations, organizations and associations within the service catchment area.  This cooperative working relationship will ensure that the employment and training needs of the aboriginal people in the area will be addressed.  Kagita Mikam is attempting to increase the skill level of aboriginal people to find permanent employment.

Kumik Elder's Schedule
Kumik is a place to speak and listen to Native Elders and hear their teachings; a place to express concerns and discuss workplace and life problems; a place to share and understand cultural differences; and; a place to meditate quietly.

Love You Give Video
Love You Give is a dynamic hip hop music video developed by and for Inuit, Métis and First Nation youth to prevent violence and promote healthy equal relationships. Hip hop music is often seen more as a contributor to youth violence than as a solution. But when fused with traditional Inuit, Métis and First Nation teachings and inspired by the hopes and fears of Aboriginal youth looking for ways to avoid getting caught up in the cycle of violence, the results are pure magic.

Makonsag Aboriginal Head Start Inc. 
Aboriginal Head Start is a federal program funded by the Public Health Agency of Canada. It is a comprehensive program to provide early interventions to First Nations, Métis and Inuit children. It includes the protection and promotion of all Aboriginal cultures and languages, education, health promotion, nutrition, social support systems and parental involvement.

Métis Nation of Ontario
The Métis Nation of Ontario is proud of its achievements in establishing and pushing a Métis specific agenda in Ontario. The MNO has made great strides for Métis through its pursuit of Métis hunting and fishing rights, human resource development and training, Métis bursary and scholarship programs, and the development of a Métis self-governance structure within Ontario. 

National Aboriginal Health Organization
The National Aboriginal Health Organization (NAHO) is an Aboriginal-designed and -controlled body committed to influencing and advancing the health and well-being of Aboriginal Peoples by carrying out knowledge-based strategies.

Native Women's Association of Canada 
The Native Women's Association of Canada (NWAC) is founded on the collective goal to enhance, promote, and foster the social, economic, cultural and political well-being of First Nations and Métis women within First Nation, Métis and Canadian societies.  NWAC is an aggregate of thirteen Native women's organizations from across Canada and was incorporated as a non-profit organization in 1974. Much like a "Grandmother's Lodge", we as aunties, mothers, sisters, brothers and relatives collectively recognize, respect, promote, defend and enhance our Native ancestral laws, spiritual beliefs, language and traditions given to us by the Creator.

Odawa Native Friendship Centre
The Odawa Native Friendship Centre is a non-profit organization serving the Aboriginal community in the Ottawa-Carleton Region of Eastern Ontario and surrounding communities.  The Odawa Native Friendship Centre opened its doors to the community in August 1975. The Aboriginal population has grown in the Ottawa community and we have expanded our services to meet their needs. We are an organization which offers various programs and services to people of all ages and where "Everyone Is Welcome".

Ottawa Inuit Children's Centre
The purpose of the Sivummut Head Start Program is to enhance the overall development of Inuit preschool children; strengthen positive parenting through support and education; and promote the retention of the Inuit culture and language.

Time To Shine Video
The Healthy Relationships Peer Education Project, created by the Inuit youth during the March Break Leadership Training Program, is a music video that fuses throat-singing and drum dancing with rap and hip hop.

The Inuit Youth Leaders have had a busy and creative summer. On June 23, they held a one-day youth camp for 60 young Inuit aged eight to 14. Under the guidance of Inuk Elder Sally Armstrong, they talked about Inuit teachings and healthy relationships. To prepare for the music video, traditional drum-dancer Ernie taught drum dancing skills, Madeleine Okalik taught hip hop skills, and Janice Oolayou and Charlotte Carleton taught throat singing skills.

Tungasuvvingat Inuit Urban Inuit Community Centre
Tungasuvvingat Inuit (TI) aims at empowering and enhancing the lives of Inuit residing in Ontario. Since 1987, TI has been operating in Ottawa as a community-based counselling and resource centre.  TI offers a supportive environment that attempts to duplicate the community spirit and cultural surrounding of the Inuit homelands. Visitors at the drop-in centre can make tea and bannock; catch up on news from home by reading northern newspapers, and socialize with other Inuit. 

Wabano Centre for Aboriginal Health
The main purpose of the Centre is to create and deliver services that will prevent ill health, treat illness and provide support and aftercare. Services will be offered in a culturally-sensitive way that welcomes, accepts and represents all Aboriginal people(s).


Ottawa Community Resources 


Amethyst Women's Addiction Centre 

Amethyst Women's Addiction Centre offers alternative addiction services to women.  Amethyst is committed to working with diverse and marginalized groups of women.  Our aim is to support women, individually and together, to take control of factors affecting our health and well-being.

Centre for Addiction and Mental Health       

CAMH is Canada's largest mental health and addiction teaching hospital. CAMH combines clinical care, research, education, policy development and health promotion to help transform the lives of people affected by mental health and addiction issues. 

Connex Ontario

ConnexOntario Health Services Information is a corporation operating three services. We exist to improve access to alcohol and drug, gambling and mental health services for the people of Ontario. We also support the development of an efficient and accountable service system by providing planning information to system managers and stewards.  ConnexOntario operates the Drug and Alcohol Registry of Treatment (DART), the Ontario Problem Gambling Helpline (OPGH), and Mental Health Service Information Ontario (MHSIO), which provide information and referral to services in Ontario. We are your first contact for help.

David Smith Youth Treatment Centre

Eastern Ontario’s only non-profit, community based agency dedicated exclusively to helping youth, between the ages of 13-18, overcome substance abuse issues and other related challenges in order to achieve a healthier lifestyle.  Programs are available free of charge to help youth and their families progress through the treatment continuum, all in a supportive, safe and caring environment.

Gambling Research Exchange Ontario (GREO)

Gambling Research Exchange Ontario (GREO) is an independent knowledge translation and exchange (KTE) organization that aims to eliminate harm from gambling. Our goal is to support evidence-informed decision making in responsible gambling policies, standards and practices. The work we do is intended for researchers, policy makers, gambling regulators and operators, and treatment and prevention service providers. 


To accomplish our goal, we:

•             Translate and disseminate high-quality evidence

•             Provide leadership in guiding research initiatives

•             Build research and KTE capacity in Ontario, Canada and internationally

Responsible Gambling Council of Ontario

The Responsible Gambling Council was established in 1983 as the Canadian Foundation on Compulsive Gambling (CFCG), the country’s first non-profit responsible gambling organization. Founded by Tibor Barsony, a compulsive gambler and pioneer in the field, the Foundation succeeded in putting problem and compulsive gambling issues on the public agenda. 

Rideauwood Addiction and Family Services

Founded in 1976, Rideauwood Addiction and Family Service is a Registered Charity serving adults, adolescents and family members. We provide non-residential, group and individual treatment, public education, training and consultation. Rideauwood also has an extensive volunteer program that provides essential services to the agency. 

Children's Services

Canadian Mothercraft of Ottawa-Carleton

Established in 1944, Mothercraft™ Ottawa is a charitable, non-profit organization that provides programs and services for parents with infants and young children. Our mission is to enhance the well being of families through responsive, quality services and we achieve this by developing innovative programs and support services.  For six decades, Mothercraft Ottawa has been a respected family service and child care centre in our community.  

Children at Risk

Provide services and programs to families of children diagnosed within the Autism Spectrum Disorders to develop their child's behavioural, communications and social skills, and to advocate for their ongoing needs.

Children's Aid Society of Ottawa-Carleton (CAS)

The Children's Aid Society of Ottawa is committed to protecting the children and youth of our community from all forms or abuse and neglect. We work to keep them safe and secure, both within their families and the communities in which they live.

First Words

The First Words Preschool Speech and Language Program of Ottawa is a program that focuses on the prevention, early identification and treatment of speech and language problems in young children (age 0 until they become eligible for senior kindergarten). 

Healthy Babies, Healthy Children

This program is for expectant parents and parents of young children from birth to 6 years.  Public Health Nurses and Family Visitors can support you as you learn about: pregnancy and childbirth, preparing for your baby, resources in your community, taking care of yourself during pregnancy and after your baby is born, what to expect as your child grows and develops, how to keep your child safe, and feeding your child.   A Public Health Nurse will call you after you are home from the hospital to answer any questions you may have. She will also arrange a time to visit you and your baby at home.

Ottawa Children's Treatment Centre

OCTC is a leader in providing specialized care for those with multiple physical, developmental, and associated behavioural needs, focusing on our Region's children and youth. We exemplify community partnership, maximizing integration and independence for clients and their families.

Parent Resource Centre

The Centre is a community-wide resource for caregivers, parents and professionals involved with early childhood issues.  One of the most important aspects of the Centre's service is to provide a place for parents and caregivers to meet, to access resources and to connect with other adults while their preschoolers play. 


Disability Tax Credit

The disability tax credit (DTC) is a non-refundable tax credit that helps persons with disabilities or their supporting persons reduce the amount of income tax they may have to pay. Being eligible for the DTC can also open the door to other government programs. For more information, go to or phone 1-800-959-8281.


Canadian Paraplegic Association

Promotes the independence, self-reliance and full participation of Canadians with spinal cord injury and other significant mobility disabilities through counselling, information and advocacy.

Canadian Association for Community Living

(CACL) is Canada's national association dedicated to promoting the participation of people with intellectual disabilities in all aspects of community life.

The Canadian National Institute for the Blind

(CNIB) helps blind, visually impaired, and deaf-blind Canadians address one of the greatest challenges of their lives: thriving - not just surviving - in a sighted world.

Canadian Association of the Deaf

Promotes and protects the rights, needs and concerns of Canadians who are deaf.  


National Educational Association of Disabled Students promotes the self-empowerment of post-secondary students with disabilities.

DisAbled Women's Network

(DAWN) is a national, cross disability organisation of women with disabilities in Canada whose focus is in the area of research, defining the needs and concerns of women with disabilities and designing programs to address those needs and concerns.

Canadian Association of Independent Living Centres

(CAILC) promotes and enables the progressive process of citizens with disabilities to take responsibility for the development and management of personal and community resources.

National Institute of Disability Management and Research

Committed to reducing the human, social and economic cost of disability to workers, employers and society through education, training and research. 

The Neil Squire Foundation

Founded to help provide people with disabilities the same choices, opportunities and quality of life as any other people. The Foundation uses technology to increase participation in recreation, employment, communication and ultimately, to create a life full of choices and independence for people with severe mobility impairment.

The Rick Hansen Institute

Removes barriers that limit people with disabilities from reaching their full potential and provides leadership in disability fund development, awareness and programs, with a focus on spinal cord injury.

Y's Owl Maclure Co-operative Centre

Is a non-profit charitable organization providing day supports and services to adults with disabilities living in Ottawa.



Family Services à la famille Ottawa

Family Services à la famille Ottawa is a community agency, grounded in a history of responding to the needs of people in our community.  We work with individuals, communities, and families in all their forms, who are currently in distress or at risk. We assist people to build on their strengths and move forward by providing counselling, education, and advocacy within a context of systemic change.

Catholic Family Service of Ottawa

Catholic Family Service Ottawa is a non-profit charitable organization, offering a range of social services in English and French to all residents of Ottawa.  These services are provided by professional qualified staff through a variety of programs designed to strengthen and empower individuals and families.

Jewish Family Services

Jewish Family Services of Ottawa (JFS) is a full service, non-sectarian agency serving residents of the greater Ottawa area - located at 2255 Carling Avenue, Suite 300. We offer more than 65 programs and services to children, youth, adults and seniors, be they individuals, couples, families or groups.

Somali Centre for Family Services 

The Somali Centre for Family Services has been serving the Somali community in the Ottawa area since 1991. We provide assistance to refugees, and to immigrants in need of settlement support and integration services. In addition, our friendly and professional staff is here to answer any questions you may have about our services.

LGBTTQ Family Resources

Around the Rainbow

Family Services à la famille Ottawa is working together with the gay, lesbian, bi, trans, two spirit, and questioning (glbttq) community, and their allies to support the inclusion of diverse families in childcare services.

Ten Oaks Project

The Ten Oaks Project engages and connects children and youth from LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, two-spirit, queer) communities through programs and activities rooted in play.


Advocacy Resource Links

Canadian Housing Equality Resources Advocate's Guide

The goal of the CHER website is to provide housing workers and advocates across Canada with information and tools to enable them to overcome - using a human rights framework - the barriers that keep people from accessing and retaining adequate housing.

Family Services Ottawa

Strong, healthy and stable families, in all their forms, nurture and care for each other and contribute to the larger community.  But at times, family can be a source of disappointment or even danger.  The Family Advocacy Program helps to create conditions that help all families create or maintain stability when times are difficult.

Non-Profits and Policy Advocacy: Learning from Success (ESPC)

This document, published by the ESPC in 2009, is a review of successful non-profit policy advocacy practices. Using case studies and examples from Alberta, Canada, and internationally, this guide outlines how and why non-profits should participate in policy advocacy, and breaks down some of the key features of successful policy advocacy efforts. The appendices contain further policy advocacy resources and contact information for policy advocacy coalitions working on a variety of campaigns.

Nonprofit Library Commons - Public Policy and Advocacy Guides for Nonprofit Organizations

Imagine Canada’s online library contains a selection of resources focused on non-profit advocacy and public policy.

The Art of Advocacy: A Handbook for Non-profit Organizations

Published by the Canadian Community Economic Development Network (CCEDNET) and Habitat for Humanity, this handbook acts as a ‘how-to’ guide to advocacy. It includes tips on starting an advocacy campaign, creating legislative strategy, writing letters, and working with the media.

Rural Communities Impacting Policy handbook

The Rural Communities Impacting Policy was a six-year rural advocacy initiative in Nova Scotia. The handbook includes information on defining a problem and analyzing the root causes, generating solutions, and putting a plan in action.

The Change Agency

This Australia-based activist resource centre offers a rich selection of online courses, workshops, publications, toolkits, and other resources on strategic activism, evaluation, advocacy and community building.   

The Voluntary Sector Initiative

The Initiative has developed a guide for working with the federal government entitled Participating in Federal Public Policy: A Guide for the Voluntary Sector, which includes the articles:
- What is public policy and why is it important to become involved?
- Navigating the system and rules (federal government)
- Implementing your strategy
- Stages of the public policy process
- Sample policy issues
- Internet Resources and websites

SafePet Ottawa

SafePet Ottawa fosters companion animals for women and children that need to exit to Violence Against Women Shelters; we foster for the duration of their stay in Shelter.


Advocacy Toolkits

Canadian Community Economic Development Network (CCEDNET) and Habitat for Humanity
Revenue Canada and Charities
Citizens for Public Justice



Written and Recommended by: Deborah Chansonneuve

This reading list was developed in response to requests from participants at Minwaashin Lodge’s recent workshop titled “Strengthening Connections” – ‘Best Practices are Decolonizing Practices’ aimed at educating non-Indigenous service providers about an Indigenous approach to ending violence against women. As suggested, listings begin from basic 101’s to more advanced readings. I’ve further included as requested the titles of my two publications for the Aboriginal Healing Foundation.

Anderson. Kim (2000). Recognition of Being: Reconstructing Native Womanhood. Toronto: Second Story Press.

Ten years later and this is still one of my favourites! The author shows how colonialism undermined Native women’s traditional roles by constructing racist, sexist versions of Native women’s identity. Through acts of self-determination Native women are reclaiming their cultural traditions and creating positive, powerful images of themselves true to their heritage. This book links Indigenous women’s collective strength and vitality to recognition of a time when they were honoured and respected. It describes women’s work and commitment toward revitalize their roles in ways that are relevant to contemporary life.

Battiste, Marie (2005). Indigenous Knowledge: Foundations for First Nations. University of Saskatchewan, Regina, SK.

This paper examines the frameworks for understanding Indigenous knowledge. ‘Cognitive imperialism’ is identified as a form of cognitive manipulation used to deny other cultures their language and cultural integrity. Reversing this process is an act of intellectual self-determination and decolonization which is necessary or Aboriginal consciousness, language and identity to flourish without being hindered by further racist interpretation.

Clark, Erin (2009). Dangerous Intersections: An Examination of Approaches to Sexual Violence Against Native Women. Unpublished thesis, Wesleyan University, Middletown, Connecticut.

This BA thesis draws from the works of Andrea Smith and others who name violence against Native women as a form of colonialism that is enabled by the state, especially the legal system. The limitations of the mainstream VAW movement to address this violence are also discussed in terms of flaws and possible solutions.

Chansonneuve, Deborah (2005). Reclaiming Connections: Understanding Residential School Trauma Among Aboriginal People. Aboriginal Healing Foundation, Ottawa:ON.

This manual was developed as an educational tool for service providers about direct and intergenerational impacts of residential schooling and other strategies of colonization so they can better serve Indigenous people who access their programs. By beginning with a description of pre-contact Inuit, Métis and First Nation history and cultures, it promotes a strength-based approach that links healing strategies with self-determination and revitalization of Indigenous knowledge, values and practices.

Chansonneuve, Deborah (2007). Addictive Behaviours Among Aboriginal People in Canada. Aboriginal Healing Foundation Research Series, AHF, Ottawa:ON

Stating that “No other population group in Canada’s history has endured such a comprehensive, deliberate, and prolonged assault on their human rights” ,this report places addictive behaviours in the context of colonialism and its strategies of genocide and ethnocide. Includes a chronology of activities toward health and healing through cultural revitalization, as well as promising practices drawn from successes in prevention and intervention.

Fournier, Suzanne and Ernie Crey (1997). Stolen from our Embrace: The Abduction of First Nations Children and the Restoration of Aboriginal Communities. Vancouver, BC: Douglas & McIntyre Ltd.

This classic in the field provides a powerful account of residential school abuses and underscores the horrific impacts of profound racism among non-Aboriginal church, government, police and ‘child welfare’ authorities that led to the devastation of Aboriginal families and communities in Canada. The stories reflect courage in the struggle against unjust systems as well as the restorative power of grassroots human rights activism and healing.

Freeman, Victoria. (2000). Distant Relations: How My Ancestors Colonized North America. Toronto, ON: McClelland & Steward Ltd.

At 535 pages, this book is a well-researched and honest personal account of colonization and its impacts from a non-Indigenous perspective. Using her own family history, she makes a compelling case for Canadians to take responsibility for their own decolonization and for insisting Canada be accountable for living up to its image as a world leader in human rights.

Highway, Tomson (2003). Comparing Mythologies. Ottawa: University of Ottawa Press.

Read anything by Tomson Highway!! This book is especially fun – it’s a transcript of his University of Ottawa lecture in 2003 where he compared Greek mythology (polytheism), Christianity (monotheism) and Cree mythology (pantheism). Highway is a writer who celebrates matriarchy and women’s creative power – and he’s funny and irreverent with an unfailingly wise acuity.

Jaimes,Guerrero, M. Annette (2003). “Patriarchal Colonialism” and Indigenism: Implications for Native Feminist Spirituality and Native Womanism. Hypatia (June 2003), 18 (2), pg. 58-69.

Identifying the failure of early feminism to address “Euroamerican patriarchy,” this author proposes that Indigenist female principles more fully challenge both colonialism and patriarchy. She points out this approach is already being used by Indigenous women who’ve taken a leadership role internationally in response to genocide, “ethnocide” and “ecocide.”

Paul, Daniel N. (2000). We Were Not the Savages: A Mi’kmaq Perspective on the Collision between European and Native American Civilizations. Fernwood Publishing, Blackwood:NS.

This book provides a male, Mi’Kmaq perspective on 300 years of colonization. It is thoroughly researched and detailed – an important and compelling read. It does have a troubling limitation in that the author is seemingly unable to accept the notion of matrilineal or matriarchal systems; he seems to share the dualistic Eurocentric dominance/submission perspective that men of such societies ‘permit their women to dominate’ them, missing the point that such societies promote gender equilibrium and mutual respect.

Sinclair, Raven (Ôtiskewàpiwskew), Hart, Michael Anthony (Kaskitémahikan) and Bruyere, Gord (Amawaajibitang), Editors. Wicihitowin: Aboriginal Social Work in Canada. Fernwood Publishing, Black Point, NS: 2009.

This is another ‘must-read’ as a Canadian social work book written by Indigenous authors who teach social work. It covers foundational theoretical perspectives, relational worldviews and philosophies that further an understanding of the history of colonization and theories of decolonization in the context of an Indigenist social work practice.

Smith, Andrea (2005). Conquest: sexual violence and American Indian genocide. Cambridge, MA: South End Press.

Smith, Andrea (2006). Boarding School Abuses, Human Rights and Reparations. Journal of Religion & Abuse, Vol. 8(2).

Smith, A. (2003). Not an Indian Tradition: The Sexual Colonization of Native Peoples. Hypatia, June, Vol. 18, no. 2, pp. 70-85.

Read anything by Andrea Smith! In the above two papers and book she places violence in Indigenous communities within the context of the larger global strategy of colonialism. Starting with widespread child abuse at state-sanctioned boarding schools from the 1880s to the 1980s, she expands the concept of violence to include: appropriation of ‘Indian’ cultural practices by whites; environmental racism; and population control. By situating violence in Native communities within the context of impacts of continuing human rights violation she frames the work to end gender violence as an anti-colonial strategy.

Valaskakis, Gail Guthrie, Dion Stout, Madeleine, and Guimond, Eric Ed. (2009). Restoring the Balance: First Nations Women, Community, and Culture. Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press.

This is another ‘must-read’ that celebrates the work, ideas and strength of women despite centuries of colonization that undermined their traditional roles.  Grounded in traditional approaches, it underscores the immense, creative contributions of Indigenous women in the areas of law, politics, education, community healing, languages and art. I especially enjoyed the chapters on women’s writing, arts and culture.

Waziyatawin, Angela Wilson and Yellow Bird, Michael, Ed. (2005). For Indigenous Eyes Only: A Decolonization Handbook. Santa Fe, NM: School of American Research.

Colonialism continues to impact the lives of Indigenous Peoples mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually. This series of exercises helps readers develop their own personal practical strategies for change based on their cultural teachings and experiences of colonialism. It includes decolonizing our diets – crucial in a population with such high rates of diabetes and heart disease.


Alfred, Taiaiake (2005).  Wasàse: indigenous pathways of action and freedom. Forward by Leroy Little Bear. Peterborough, ON: Broadview Press.

Wasàse is a ceremony of unity, strength, and commitment to action toward rejecting white societies control over Indigenous people in order to create a society based on respect, justice and peace. Such action includes “massive restitution” including land, financial transfers and other compensation for past harms as well as ending persistent injustices against Indigenous Peoples. Alfred is one of the all too rare male authors who celebrate female strength and women’s leadership.

Tuhiwai Smith, Linda (2006). Research Through Imperial Eyes, in Decolonizing Methodologies: Research and Indigenous Peoples, University of Otago Press.

This book describes an approach to academic research that assumes Western ideas are the only rational and legitimate way to make sense of the world, of reality, of social life, and of humans. She reveals its assumed superiority over Indigenous knowledge coupled with “an overabundance of desire to bring progress into the lives of Indigenous peoples – spiritually, intellectually, socially and economically.


Google Robert Houle – his art and thinking has taught me so much about decolonization and innovation; also Louise Erdrich – anything by her but especially ‘The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse” – a great read!



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Respecting Women is Our Culture