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Want to Give Advice for a New Book on First Nations Birth and Pregnancy in Ontario?

Deadline December 1, 2010

The Best Start Resource Centre is working to develop a new book for health care providers who work with pregnant First Nations women in Ontario. The book aims to help health care providers get new ideas and strategies for providing good prenatal care to the women and families with whom they are working. The book is being developed from December 2010 to March 2011.

So what are we looking for?

We are looking for about five advisors in Ontario who can:

  • Devote a couple of hours per month to meeting by phone, email, or in person
  • Review various documents such as the book’s table of contents, literature review, etc.
  • Provide feedback and edits to Melanie’s questions and ideas
  • Share information about the prenatal period for First Nations women (and their families)
  • Give advice on who should be a “key informant” for this project

We are also looking for key informants who can share teachings and strategies for providing good care to First Nations families during the prenatal period. Key informants might be health care providers, Elders, traditional teachers, grandparents, academics, researchers, fathers, mothers, Band councillors, etc. We especially need a variety of people from Cree, Mohawk, and Ojibwe backgrounds.

What do advisors and key informants get?

Advisors and key informants receive a small honorarium for their time, plus a copy of the book once it is published. Advisors and key informants also receive acknowledgement for their role in developing the book.

How do I get involved?

Get in touch with Melanie Ferris by December 1, 2010, at or at (416) 537-0752 if you have questions. In your email explain whether you are interested in being an advisor, a key informant, or both. Include several paragraphs (or your resume) providing some details about your life, your work, and what makes you a good contributor for this project. Melanie will get back to everyone who is being considered for the project by early December.

Please note that our first advisory meeting happens by phone on Monday, December 13.

Why is Melanie developing this project?

Melanie is a First Nations mom, writer, researcher, and teacher. In 2007 and 2008 she worked with Health Canada to develop Walking the Sacred Path, a comprehensive prenatal teaching tool for First Nations and Métis families in Canada. Melanie just finished developing the Let’s Be Healthy Together toolkit and training project at Best Start for preventing childhood obesity in Ontario’s Aboriginal communities. She is also a regular contributor to various books and journals on the topic why we need to raise our children using an Indigenous approach.

Learn more about Melanie at or about Best Start at http://