The Primary aim of the Prairie Region Health Promotion Research Centre (PRHPRC) is research and practice that promotes the self-determination of a variety of communities. PRHPRC is in the process of developing its research program in a number of cross cutting thematic areas. To date these draw on two broad fields of content: mental health promotion, and literacy & health. Cross cutting thematic areas are: health promotion theory, evidence-based health promotion, knowledge translation, ethno-cultural specific health promotion frameworks, relationship between Western models of health promotion and Indigenous health promotion, Primary health and globalization and health. Our research aims to involve community, government and University partners and draws on multiple strategies including participatory methods, community capacity building, public policy advocacy and knowledge translation and transfer. We expect a number of thesis supervision opportunities to arise for interested students in the coming year.
LITERACY: CURRENT PROJECTS
Building Health Equity through literacy, language and culture: the Village
of La Loche
Funded by: Indigenous People’s Health Research Centre, Development Grant
The research is designed to increase self-determination and control over health for La Loche community members through community development activities and public policy advocacy aimed at increasing literacy levels; and increase indigenous applied research capacity in this area through theory and model building regarding the interrelationships between literacy, language and culture and the ways in which these might be mobilized in other Aboriginal communities for indigenous development. The research will form a partnership of community and university researchers for the purpose of conceptualizing and developing a framework to support applied research that effectively mobilizes three interrelated health determinants (literacy, language and culture) as community resources for well-being.
Developing and supporting capacity for practice-related research on literacy
and health in Canada. Beginning Feb 2006.
Funded by: Canadian Literacy Secretariat
This national research project builds on work carried out by the researchers over the past three years to develop a national program of research on literacy and health. The objectives are to: build capacity for literacy and health research among practitioners, students and researchers; stimulate research on literacy and health; and synthesize and disseminate knowledge regarding literacy and health in Canada. The outcomes will include an increase in practice-related research on literacy and health, improved quality of literacy and health programs, enhanced capacity of researchers and practitioners in both the health and literacy fields to work together and improved coordination and sharing of information on literacy and health. The project will be carried out by a team of researchers and practitioners across Canada in collaboration with national and regional organizations. A research coordinator will be hired by PRHPRC I to develop research projects across Saskatchewan, Manitoba and North western Territories (2006-2009).
MENTAL HEALTH PROMOTION: CURRENT PROJECTS
Healthcare policies, knowledge systems and approaches to mental well-being
in Saskatchewan: A Cree perspective
Funded by: Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation, Emerging Researchers Award. Commencing Jan 2006.
This research seeks to explore Saskatchewan Cree concepts of mental health and how they may be incorporated and used to provide more effective mental health care. The study will take place on the Sturgeon Lake First Nation reserve (SLFN). It will involve both the reserve community and their respective service providers. Secondarily, the research will focus more broadly on the policies and programs of Federal and Provincial healthcare systems in Saskatchewan.
“The Mental Health Promotion Practitioner as an agent of self-determination:
Reflections on mental health promotion as a transformative practice”.
Funding: Research Development Fund, University of Saskatchewan
The purpose of this study is to contribute towards knowledge and skills development for mental health promotion practitioners in empowerment practice. The focus of the study is an exploration of practitioners’ reflections on how cultural, professional and organizational forms of power impact on practice and 2) how practitioners might draw on these to facilitate increased mental health equity.
Reducing mental health disparities through population health
promotion: translating practice into knowledge – knowledge into practice.
Funds pending: announcement April 2006.
This principle focus of the research is the applied study and development of mental health promotion (MHP) models and the translation of these into practice, policy and purchasing decisions in order reduce mental health disparities and promote equity for vulnerable populations throughout Saskatchewan and Canada. It is ultimately aimed at the improvement of mental health of Canadians, particularly those groups at the economic and cultural margins of Canadian society, and effecting improvements in the Canadian healthcare system and its capacity to engage with allied sectors towards this end. If funded this project will have a number of thesis supervision opportunities at PhD and Masters level.