Dr. Dawn Martin-Hill

Dr. Dawn Martin-Hill

Workshop Facilitator

Dawn Martin-Hill (Mohawk, Wolf Clan) holds a PhD in Cultural Anthropology and is one of the original founders of the Indigenous Studies Program at McMaster University and Paul R. McPherson Indigenous Studies Chair. She is a CIHR – College of Reviewers and Indigenous advisory committee. Her primary research for two decades includes: environmental – health research, mental health/youth gendered governance & equity, traditional medicine and well-being, Indigenous Knowledge and ways of knowing methodologies and pedagogy. She is a PI Co-Creation of Indigenous Water Quality Tools for Global Water Futures, and several CIHR, NSERC and GWF Indigenous water security and climate change highlighting diverse challenges identified by Indigenous Peoples in obtaining water security. She is lead investigator he co-creation of tools for monitoring ecosystem and health data, water governance and culturally relevant tools to build long-term and sustained community capacity through training and certifying Indigenous youth in sustaining water quality monitoring. Numerous Indigenous communities, organizations are collaborators and will stand to benefit from the collaborative methodologies and pedagogies of integrating western and Indigenous knowledge, expertise in creating tools to be gained, shared and sustained through this project.

The goal of the three year network catalyst project is to meaningfully engage Indigenous knowledge holders, practitioners, researchers, trainees and knowledge brokers to collaborate and advance environmental health research that guided by Indigenous knowledge and ways of knowing in all aspects of the research process

WORKSHOP TITLE :Resilience building through Traditional Ecological Knowledge Digital Stories

DESCRIPTION : Indigenous youth mental wellness must be centered in land, the language, community, cultural identity, and empowerment (Martin Hill, Journal of Aboriginal Health, 2009).  Symma Finn,1 Mose Herne,2 and Dorothy Castille3 explain traditional ecological knowledge (TEK) refers to a subset of indigenous knowledge, preserved though oral tradition and through cultural expressions such as arts, crafts, and ceremonies and the cultivation, collection, and preparation of traditional foods. The preservation of this knowledge is increasingly threatened by the loss of indigenous languages worldwide, which affects not only the transmission of TEK through narratives, storytelling, and song but also the understanding of the meaning and significance of other forms of cultural expression (Moller 2009; Montag et al. 2014).“TEK encompasses a broader and more multilayered understanding of the interconnection of humans and the environment and is defined differently depending on its application to resource and ecosystem management, law, mental health and substance abuse, ethnobotany, and, more recently, to environmental health and climate change research (Alcorn 1989; Tsosie 1996; McGregor 2009; Flint et al. 2011; Gone 2012; Maldonado et al. 2015; Moorehead et al. 2015).”

The GWF existing co-creation health team has observed and heard from community alarming levels of water anxiety experienced by FN youth/families. Elders, SN health services identified a need to further address mental health as it relates to ecological grief, burden of lack of access to clean water and environmental stressors.  Our current and new research understands the importance of monitoring the impact of positive youth water actions and well-being. The activities (water sensor training, water governance and protection) should be improving resilience in both water and human health. From youth and community consultation to date, specific research tools have been identified, including: (1) the need to develop a coordinated survey tool that includes information on water anxiety, perceptions of water quality, access to perceived health water and burden of cost, positive water actions, positive experiences with social justice, mattering, and resilience in youth; (2) a need for documentation of water stories emphasizing youth positive action as an open-access knowledge mobilization tool; and (3) a need for a youth-informed resilience communication tool, such as an App, that incorporates access to living archives of youth stories, and serves a role for further water advocacy and youth agency.

Other Involved Speakers

Makasa Looking Horse

Workshop Facilitator 

Makasa Looking Horse was home birthed at Six Nations through ceremony. She was taken on the Unity Ride and Run at 6 months of age and began running with them by age three in British Columbia. She participated in the Run until they arrived at Six Nations age 4. Her entire life has been interwoven in Lakota Sundance since she was two years old. She attended Longhouse throughout her life and immersion school at Kawani;io
At age 10 she started her Lakota rites of passage, throwing the ball and the next year her ishnati, where she received her pipe. She was also gifted with a Tipi by the Rosebud Reservation woman Elders. She was also on the Haudenosaunee Run from Six Nation to the United Nations. She was asked to do the opening pipe ceremony for Indigenous Day which coincided with the Unity run’s arrival with Youth Declaration, documented in the film “Let’s Become Again’. By age 12 she Sundanced with her father, completing her 4 years. Elder Women Sundancer’s chose her to leads sweat lodge and the women Sundancers to this day which continues to do. She also participated Oheron;kon Rites of passage, completing her fast for 4th year in Akwasasne … Read More

Kahontiyoha Denise McQueen

Workshop Facilitator 

Denise McQueen is a Mohawk ,Turtle clan from the Six Nations Territory. She has a B.A in Mohawk Language and is currently a student in the Indigenous Studies Program at McMaster University. She is also a community consultant working on the Haudenosaunee Environmental Health Task Force.

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