Trauma Teams

The Trauma Teams are currently proposal based projects, mobilized only upon request from the leadership of a First Nation. The Trauma Teams arose from a recommendation from the Chief Coroner’s Office back in 2006-2008 based on a review of suicides in one community. The concept of the Trauma Teams was defined through the work done in other communities for the past 27 years. SLFNHA recently deployed Trauma Teams into three communities: Wapekeka, Pikangikum and Neskantaga.

The team is comprised of a Trauma Team Coordinator, based in Sioux Lookout and several contractual Trauma Team Mental Health Counsellors who travel into a First Nation community to provide support to community members dealing with post-crisis situational or historical trauma.  The Trauma Team provides a continuous and long term approach to healing, combining the cultural principles and practices of the Anishinabe way of life with the science and resources of the western world. 

In collaboration with community-based workers, the Trauma Teams conduct home visits to assess family situations from basic needs to high-risk situations, enabling the team to reach out to people who otherwise would not come to the attention of mental health professionals.  Trauma Teams act as a source of support and stability to reduce isolation and address barriers to service. The success of the trauma teams results from the cultural approach that is utilized such as Anishinabe speakers, adhering to the Anishinabe value system and the hands on approach to helping. It is the knowing and doing of the Anishinabe way that enables the team to reach so many people in need.

Trauma Teams track community interaction and growth, the success of their planned activities and the outcomes of interacting at community events. This approach enables the workers to develop a trusting relationship that begins to identify a trend that can later be used to successfully combat the cause of why our people and youth are ending their lives in such troubling and alarming rates.

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