This is a brief update on our activities since our last newsletter. As we release this Spring newsletter we are reminded that most of the country is still experiencing winter weather.
The end of the fiscal year-end is upon us and we are preparing our annual year-end reports to funders. This has been a very busy year, and we often don’t realize it but as we begin to compile
Aboriginal AIDS Awareness Week was launched in Calgary Alberta on December 1st, 2015. There were three Public Service Announcements (PSAs), campaign posters and various press releases. Many thanks is expressed to the AAAW Steering Committee for their hard work in helping us in carrying out a successful campaign. Once again there was a PSA as well from the Assembly of First Nations National Chief Perry Bellegarde. There was considerable media coverage.
Annual General Meeting and Skills Building – Plans are underway for our 18th Annual General Meeting (AGM) and Skills building that will be held in Montreal June 13-17, 2016. The AGM planning committee is working hard to deliver a skills building agenda that will meet the needs of those attending the meeting.
Sexual Health Promotion week was held at the Toronto Birth Centre on Dundas Street on February 10th from 7-9:00 pm. The event was well attended and included a celebration and campaign focused on Heart your Parts. Snacks, interactive activities and door prizes were distributed. Topics including what cultural safety means and relationships to getting care and services and emphasizing the importance of everyone working together were all part of the event. This event was in partnership with the Native Youth Sexual Health Network.
Hepatitis C Awareness Campaign will be held during the month of May. The Hepatitis C Awareness Launch will be held once again in the Aboriginal Room on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on May 12th, 2016 from 2:00 – 5:00 pm. Regional activities will take place across Canada, including Vancouver, Regina, Halifax, and Toronto. These will be promoted on our website and Facebook page.
Saskatchewan Enhancement Initiative evaluation activities are still being conducted by Dr. Kim McKay McNabb in Saskatchewan. This group will be having a face to face meeting in Saskatoon on April 19th – 21st at the Delta Bessbourough. Excellent work is being carried out in Saskatchewan by the groups including the development of an Elders Council, a glossary of HIV and Sexual health terminology and the development of various resources.
Promising Practices in Rural Communities – CAAN wants to showcase community led initiatives by producing and releasing a twenty-two (22) minute documentary which will be shared at the International AIDS Conference in Durban South Africa and will also be promoted to local, regional, and national audiences within Canada, such as APTN, CBC, Global and other mainstream media. The documentary will highlight the Indigenous communities in rural Saskatchewan who are addressing HIV and AIDS issues in a culturally appropriate holistic manner. This documentary is still being worked on and will be released in July.
We thank all of our volunteers who sit on our many committees to ensure that CAAN is doing its work in a good way.