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Chemainus Aboriginal Nursing Project Receives Funding

NEWS RELEASE
For Immediate Release
2007HEALTH0143-001537
Dec. 7, 2007

Ministry of Health

CHEMAINUS – The H’ulh-etun Health Society has been awarded $40,573 as part of the Province’s Aboriginal Nursing Strategies, a British Columbia wide initiative that will provide $500,000 in 2007/2008 to fund Aboriginal nursing initiatives across B.C., Health Minister George Abbott announced today.“This year, we have doubled the amount of funding available to eligible organizations through our Aboriginal Nursing Strategies,” said Abbott. “We are dedicated to building a strong relationship with B.C.’s Aboriginal people and we want to ensure that Aboriginal communities around the province have health services that reflect the needs of the community.”

Aboriginal nursing projects receiving funding through the Ministry of Health’s Nursing Directorate must focus on at least one of four main goals:

· Recruiting and/or supporting Aboriginal students;

· Recruiting and retaining Aboriginal nurses;

· Supporting nursing in Aboriginal communities in B.C.; and

· Developing health promotion and disease prevention materials for B.C.’s Aboriginal communities.

The H’ulh-etun Health Society project is one of 15 projects receiving funding through Aboriginal Nursing Strategies for 2007/2008.

“That this project has received funding through the Aboriginal Nursing Strategies is great news for Aboriginal communities on Vancouver Island,” said Dr. Lynn Stevenson, Vancouver Island Health Authority’s chief of professional practice and nursing. “Increasing the number of Aboriginal nurses working in B.C.’s health system is a great step in ensuring that nursing care meets the health-care needs of Aboriginal communities.”

The H’ulh-etun Health Society project will establish a mentorship program for Aboriginal nurses and aims to increase the number of Aboriginal nursing students from the Chemainus, Halalt, Lyackson and Malahat First Nations and the Penelakut Tribe.

“This funding will allow us to provide a number of exciting opportunities for nursing students and prospective nursing students in our community, including job shadowing and a community health fair,” said Cynthia Rayner, executive director of the H’ulh-etun Health Society. “We are delighted that this project will allow us to provide mentorship and support to Aboriginal students while increasing awareness of Aboriginal health care in our community.”

Since 2001, the Province has invested $174 million towards B.C.’s Nursing Strategy with a focus on educating, recruiting and retaining qualified nurses.

In June 2007, the Ministry of Health issued a request for proposals for Aboriginal nursing projects for 2007/2008. A total of $500,000 was available to a variety of organizations, including Aboriginal groups, post-secondary institutions and nursing associations. All projects must be completed by March 31, 2008 and a final evaluation report must be submitted to the Ministry of Health by April 15, 2008.

For more information about Aboriginal Nursing Strategies, please visit www.health.gov.bc.ca/ndirect/.

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Media contact:

Marisa Adair
Communications Director
Ministry of Health
250 952-1889
250 920-8500 (cell)