ACHH Maritimes

Project Description

The ACHH Maritimes project grew from the original UnPPAC work and an increased need to further explore the pain and hurt experiences of Indigenous children and youth. The ACHH Initiative partnered with four First Nation communities in the Mi’kmaw and Wolastoqey region (three Mi’kmaq and one Wolastoq). These communities included Eskasoni First Nation, Millbrook First Nation, Lennox Island First Nation and St. Mary’s First Nation. This project involved the completion of demographic surveys and Talking Circles with children & youth (146), parents (25), Elders (18) and adults professionals (32). A sub-sample of child and youth participants (42) also completed art sessions with Mi’kmaw artist Alan Syliboy. Further to this, a retrospective health data analysis was completed which Mi’kmaq children and youth (2631) compared to a group of non-Mi’kmaw children and youth (2631).

We relied on a community-based approach and partnership to collaboratively work with each community. Two-Eyed Seeing guided all aspects of the research including data collection, analysis, interpretation and knowledge translation. In addition, The (Sacred) Medicine Wheel (to the right) served as a guide to analyze the artwork in relation to the Indigenous youth’s health.

medicine wheel

The (Sacred) Medicine Wheel (Above)


Art From The Heart

With the help of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, Art from the Heart – a travelling art exhibit – was created which showcased a selection of the youth’s artwork. Art from the Heart has traveled to many locations across Canada and has inspired and comforted others. Clinicians, community leaders and the public have been able to view firsthand the impact of pain and hurt on Indigenous children’s lives through these pieces.

ACHH Maritime
Youth Art
Art From the Heart


Additional Resources

ACHH Video: First Nation Community Health

The FIRST Approach

FIRST Approach


Find out more

Learn the origins behind the ACHH Maritimes research by visiting our UnPPAC page!