Exploring Indigenous Knowledge of Helping
My doctoral work with Cree Elders and social workers with Indigenous knowledge of helping explored Cree perspectives on helping in relation to social work. Part of our research program further investigates the Cree model by bringing the helping model to Cree Elders and social workers for further development and expansion. The goal of this project is to confirm the model's applicability to a wide audience of Cree peoples and strengthen the framework of the model. This project requires travel to Cree Elders in Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and/or Alberta to partake in "conversations" (Kovach, 2009). During these visits with the Elders, the initial model we have developed is reviewed and discussed regarding its applicability and appropriateness. Additional connections and conversations will be made with Elders in northern Manitoba through video conferencing. These connections support ongoing dialogue and analysis with the Elders throughout the entire research program. The outcome of this objective will be a validated Cree based model of helping that can be used to develop similar models in other First Nations and incorporated into social work training programs in Manitoba and across Canada.