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Consider a career that will help promote health and wellness in the diverse Indigenous population in the Fraser Health region. We are one of seven health authorities in British Columbia and are responsible for providing health care to 1.9 million people in 20 diverse communities from Burnaby to Fraser Canyon on the traditional territories of the Coast Salish and Nlaka'pumux peoples. Communities in Fraser Health include a diverse multicultural population of approxinately 62,000 First Nation, Métis and Inuit, which represents approximately 3.7%  of the total population in the region.

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Our team members share their stories...

“I am of Aboriginal ancestry and an intergenerational survivor, so I’ve always had a passion for working with Aboriginal people. Most of my jobs have involved working with the Aboriginal population,” shares Dionne. “My mother went to residential school. I understand and am fully aware of the trauma and impacts that have been put upon Aboriginal people and want to be a part of the change to move forward and continue to heal. 
I was born and raised in the Stó:lō territory, where I still reside today. My dad’s family, McGrath, comes from Rosedale, BC. God rest his soul, he passed when I was 14-year-old. I am fortunate to still have my mother in my life today, Purcell (nee Smith), originating from Samahquam Band, St’at’imc Nation, in the Interior Salish area. My descendants are of non-Native and Aboriginal ancestry. 
I am proud to say that I am a mother/grandmother to three children and three grandsons. I carry three traditional/ancestral names: Qenis (Killer whale); Ti wa Nukw’ay7lh (Helper of the people) and Thee-al-ew-qwey (Looking after others); and I have been recognized as an Elder: one who shares the wisdom and knowledge with the people. 
When it comes to culture and spirituality, this is where I feel like I’m playing catch up with my grandchildren, I never had the opportunity to teach my children, for I started this later in my life. My oldest grandson, who is 8-years-old, and I have been learning my language, Ucwalmicw together. This is something I hold dear to my heart. 
In March 2019, I had the honor of joining Fraser Health as an Aboriginal peer coordinator. I work in partnership with people from various programs across Fraser Health and many other stakeholders, such as the First Nations Health AuthorityI focus on the Aboriginal population with lived experience of substance use – promoting the meaningful engagement of peers. One thing that I bring to this position is my knowledge of my culture. I drum and sing, carry out spiritual ceremonies, facilitate healing/talking circles while also holding space for teaching the history of Aboriginal people. 
When the opportunity arises, I share my knowledge with others who have clients of Aboriginal ancestry. Aboriginal people have been impacted by past events, such as the residential school era and the Sixty’s Scoop – a time in Canadian history when Indigenous children were taken from their families and placed in foster homes or put up for adoption. I feel that having an understanding of this history can help health care and service providers work with Aboriginal people more successfully.” 
When is comes to managing her own health, Dionne turns to the ‘medicine wheel’. The medicine wheel has a variety of definitions depending on culture, but is essentially meant to represent the alignment and connection between a person’s spiritual, physical, mental and emotional states. 
“With how busy life gets and the many demands that are put on us as helpers, I try to implement the medicine wheel to stay in balance. In order to help others, I need to take care of myself,” she explains. “We are all given a task in this world and it is up to us to fulfill it and be a part of the change.”
"My inner-compass has led me to pursue a career in health care. I have always enjoyed helping and caring for others which eventually led me to pursue a teaching career in the education system. Eventually, I found this incredible opportunity to teach health professionals about Indigenous culture, values, and knowledge systems. In this important work, I find a bridging of two worlds that reflect and honor reconciliation, compassion, and inclusivity for the betterment of our entire community as a whole."
Carol, an Aboriginal Health Liaison Social Worker and a member of Chawathil First Nations, shares with us her touching personal story of why she chose to work in the health care field. 

“Over twenty years ago, I lost my father and my sister less than a month apart. The time they spent in hospitals seemed to last forever, and I still remember the feelings of sadness, confusion, and helplessness. Then, I ended up in hospital for three days, where three community members, that I barely knew, stopped in to visit me. Those people lightened up my heart just by sharing their encouragement with me. 

Upon discharge, I happened to see an elderly First Nations woman across the hall, I stopped in to say ‘Hi’, and she told me she had been so sad and lonely. My visit brightened up her day and at that moment I realized that someone needed to be there for those patients who were feeling lost and frightened. As an Aboriginal Health Liaison, I can be that person to guide, support and help navigate patients and their families through the health care system.”
"I work with Aboriginal patients doing spiritual counselling and making sure they receive culturally appropriate care. I teach about forgiveness and letting go of anger, shame, blame and guilt. When we forgive ourselves and those who’ve hurt us, we take our power back. When someone takes back the spirit – the love – they’ve surrendered, powerful things take place." 
My advice: live in harmony, love, forgive and care for people. My grandfather used to say, “The only time we’re allowed to look down on people is when we’re putting our hand down to help them back up.” 
Francis Horne, Indigenous Cultural Advisor, Aboriginal Health Services

What you need to know...

We are proud of our tightly-knit team and their achievements.
Each year, Fraser Health Talent Acquisition and Onboarding team wears orange in honour of the survivors and their families. September 30 is an opportunity for all of us to engage in dialogue about the legacy of the residential school system in a meaningful way.
We are proud to provide safe, holistic and accessible care for over 62,000 Indigenous people and to employ amazing people on our team.
To demonstrate our recognition of and respect for Indigenous Peoples as well as to maintain a climate for positive social change, we are encouraging all staff to formally recognize and acknowledge the First Peoples on whose traditional territories we live and work. 
Bal Somel, Client Partner Talent Acquisition and Onboarding is happy to provide you with more information on our current opportunities
Fraser Health Territory Acknowledgement

To create a climate for positive social change the Fraser Health Authority is encouraging all staff to formally recognize and acknowledge the First Peoples on whose traditional territories we live and work. It is recommended that this acknowledgement occur at the beginning of meetings, events, conferences, and presentations. The acknowledgement of territory demonstrates our recognition of and respect for Indigenous Peoples. The recognition and acknowledgement of traditional territory is consistent with Fraser Health’s commitment to embed cultural safety and cultural humility within the Fraser-Salish health care system.

If you’re thinking about a career in the health care sector, we’ve got some great ideas for you.
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Have questions? Reach out to our Indigenous Recruitment and Retention team -