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New CBR Project: Black and Indigenous Supports for Social-Emotional Development (R-BLISS)

On October 16, 2023 the Centre for Child Development, Mental Health, and Policy (CCDMP) at the University of Toronto Mississauga (UTM) was honoured to co-host an Indigenous Sacred Fire Ceremony at the UTM Tipi with Dr. Gokoomis (Grandmother) Jacque/line Lavallée, 2nd Degree Midewewin, and Dr. Hopi Martin, Oshkaabewis, from Edge of the Bush. We thank them for their time and presence. The ceremony was an immersive and enlightening experience for our team and guests, leaving us with a sense of connection to the land, nature, and community. We are grateful to the UTM Office of Indigenous Initiatives for their support in facilitating the event.  

 

The ceremony also served as an introduction to our new community-based project, Black and Indigenous Supports for Social-Emotional Development (R-BLISS), aimed at building upon past research by incorporating the voices of Black and Indigenous communities throughout each stage of the research process. This is important because initiatives may be more successful when they are guided by the voices and perspectives of the communities they aim to serve. Next steps include continuing to adapt our training materials based on feedback from our focus groups with Black caregivers of young children and input from our Black community advisors and working with our Indigenous community advisors to plan visioning feasts to continue to support community connections.

 

To learn more about the Centre for Child Development, Mental Health, and Policy and the R-BLISS Project, go to https://www.utm.utoronto.ca/ccdmp/research/promotion-healthy-child-development-and-flourishing.

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