Inuit Culture in Health Care
Being grounded in Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit includes living from a foundation of Inuit traditional knowledge, which is at the heart of health and wellness for Inuit. Mind, body, spirit and emotion are one unit and all of these areas are required in being healthy which is different in the Western medicine that is used today. With cultural awareness teachings through workshops, this learned philosophy will help bridge the gap between health care workers and Inuit, further it will result in culturally compassionate care, where trust can be built and again, better health outcomes can be achieved. Bridging the gaps means providing the tools necessary for health care workers to communicate and understand our Indigenous people.
Inuit Culture in Social Services
People requesting care from social services are already in a vulnerable position, it is important to understand your role with our Inuit and our history that will help in communications, and mutual understanding. By advancing practitioners in Inuit cultural safety training, they will provide support with respect to indigenous diversity and with understanding of the distinction between, First Nation, Metis and Inuit populations. Workers and practitioners will be able to provide resources and connect our Inuit with Inuit specific support services outside of Inuit Nunangat that help in areas such as employment opportunities, entrepreneurship, justice, education and health needs through cultural awareness workshops.
The resource tool: The Inuit Box was created to help urban Inuit reconnect to Inuit culture in urban settings. The boxes also work as a bridge between Indigenous support workers, chaplains, and Indigenous patient facilitators by utilizing the cultural pieces in the box. Many people involved in the circle of care of Inuit do not understand what it means to be Inuk and this box helps this communication problem. Keeping in contact with Inuit Elders is important, the box offers a means of connection to Inuit Elders and urban Inuit by sending post cards to Elders in Iqaluit. This helps both the urban Inuk and Elders. Sensory and taste items are also included in the box from Inuit Traditional Land in the form of Tea, and the Ookpik because feeling and tasting our homeland means the world to us. Additionally Cultural Resources are included for the Inuk and support worker help to bridge the gap. Additional items like Arctic Cotton Grass for the Qulliq can also be included for Inuit Spiritual needs. Boxes are customizable, prices vary. Please download the Informational flyer to learn more about the Inuit Boxes or click the news links below.
Click the Nunatsiaq News link to read an article by journalist Meral Jamal on Muckpaloo’s journey and the Inuit Boxes