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Vision and Mission

The vast and serene landscape of the Nishnawbe Aski Nation Territory, is home to over 49 First Nations communities, each with their own unique traditions, dialects, beliefs, and way of life. The rhythms of nature and the timeless wisdom of the land are deeply ingrained in our culture.

However, many Indigenous communities in the Nishnawbe Aski Nation territory face their own set of challenges and struggles, with mental health being at the forefront. In response to this, the Nishnawbe Aski Mental Health Wellness Support Access Program, known as NAN Hope, was created. This innovative program, led by members of the First Nations community, aims to provide culturally appropriate and timely support for mental health and addictions to the members of the 49 First Nations communities in the Nishnawbe Aski Nation Territory.

One of the unique aspects of NAN Hope is its community-driven approach. This means that the program is built upon the needs and priorities of the community members themselves, taking into account their cultural beliefs, values, and traditions. This allows for a more personalized and effective approach to supporting mental health and addictions, as it is tailored to the specific needs of each community.

With mental health and addictions being such complex and sensitive issues, it is crucial to have a central access point that is culturally appropriate and safe for community members to seek help. NAN Hope serves as this access point, providing a continuum of supports and services that include crisis response, counselling, traditional healing, and referrals to other community resources.

In the words of Kelly Leek, Executive Director of NAN Health Services, “NAN Hope is a program that puts the community at the heart of mental health and addictions support. By incorporating cultural practices and community input, we are able to offer a more holistic and effective approach to addressing these issues.”

But the impact of NAN Hope goes beyond just providing support for mental health and addictions. It is also a powerful symbol of resilience and strength within the First Nations community. By taking charge of their own mental health and well-being, community members are breaking the cycle of stigma and addressing the intergenerational trauma that has plagued Indigenous communities for far too long.

NAN Hope is a shining example of what can be achieved when communities come together to support each other. It is a beacon of hope for those struggling with mental health and addictions, showing that there is always a way forward, and that support is just a phone call away. By providing timely, culturally appropriate, and community-driven support, NAN Hope is truly making a difference in the lives of those living in the Nishnawbe Aski Nation Territory, and serves as a model for other communities to follow.