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Indigenous women affected by HIV are on a healing path: report

April 3, 2017

By Lindsay Jolivet

Dr. Mona Loutfy
Dr. Mona Loutfy

HIV among Indigenous communities in Canada is a women’s health issue, because nearly half of Indigenous Canadians who test positive for HIV are women. These Indigenous women are asking for healthcare and support that respects their culture, says Dr. Mona Loutfy, a scientist at WCH.

Dr. Loutfy facilitated a partnership between WCH and the Canadian Aboriginal AIDS Network to lead a research initiative that involves including Indigenous Ceremony and ways in helping Indigenous women optimize their well-being. On March 8, International Women’s Day, they launched their first report, entitled “Strong Women’s Bear Journey,” after the research group’s new name.

“The Strong Women’s Bear Journey initiative is about answering research questions in a good way for the Indigenous communities by using community-based research practices, tradition and ceremony. The aim is to help Indigenous women on their healing path,” says Dr. Loutfy.

Formerly called the Aboriginal Women’s Research Initiative, the partnership brings together a group of Indigenous and allied women from across Canada that puts Indigenous women living with HIV at the heart of their work.

The report shares case studies from across Canada, compiled from the collective’s in-person retreat held in January 2016 in Mono, Ontario.

Download the report from the WCH website to learn more.


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