Programming Connection

Around the Kitchen Table 

Chee Mamuk Aboriginal Program, BC Centre for Disease Control
British Columbia

Lessons Learned

  • Using the strengths of Aboriginal women as natural leaders and linking education to cultural teaching are effective ways to engage Aboriginal communities in HIV, STI and hepatitis information.
  • Communities are at different levels of readiness to launch a peer-run project that deals with issues related to HIV, STIs and hepatitis.
  • Taking care to determine the level of community readiness, tailor a program to the community’s specific realities and find committed staff for the project can increase the probability of success.
  • Community facilitators need to fully understand the program model, develop a clear statement of objectives and activities, identify resources and plan for ongoing evaluation before implementation begins in each community. Ongoing support from program staff increases the probability of success.
  • Networking new community facilitators with women who have already implemented ATKT eases the learning curve for new communities and helps sustain the model over time.