The Lheidli T’enneh Health Department is dedicated to the promotion of health and wellness for Band members. Through programming and services that promote healthy lifestyles, disease prevention, as well as self-care and personal management of wellness, Lheidli Nation encourages and supports health for its people now, as well as for future generations. Some programs are offered on reserve while others may be offered in Prince George or with the help of partnering services.
The Health Department staff consists of a manager, full time nurse, health care assistant, part time community care worker, and a receptionist, all whom work closely with the Family Development Department to promote services and education around health.
With its new Health Centre building, Lheidli has its own public infrastructure to support and sustain the long term health of its citizens but is in the practice of research and partnerships to enhance these health goals and community needs.
Tamara Seymour is the interim Health Department Manager. In addition to managing staff, Tamara’s work in the department also includes budgeting, completing final reports, and applying for fiscal grants and funding.
Health is a broad term, which means Tamara’s day-to-day tasks are always changing in order to accommodate the community’s needs at that time. One day it can be facilitating a community kitchen to help teach and feed families, the next it can be coordinating a bingo or tea for elders. Things are always buzzing at the Health Clinic and Tamara can usually be found in the middle of it all, ensuring everything is running smoothly.
After studying social work in school, Tamara began working at the Treaty Department where she was eventually promoted to a manager position in 2017. She took a year off to have her daughter, but soon after found herself wanting to give back to the community that had supported her. Tamara was able to do just that when she became the new Health Manager in March 2020. Viewing social work and health as going hand in hand when it comes to healing, Tamara uses her personal and educational experience to lead staff as a team in providing quality health service to Lheidli T’enneh band members.
Health care can be complicated and expensive, but the Health Department staff are glad to help band members understand and navigate the health care system. This can include answering general questions like what medications may or may not be funded by Lheidli, as well as how to apply for funding in order to pay for those medications. The Health Department’s mission is to educate, support, and guide members to understand the opportunities available so they can navigate the health care system and get the care they need.
Programs and Services Offered
The Lheidli T’enneh Health Department offers numerous programs and services, ranging from educational sessions and resources to fun family events members can attend in person. Information about these events is also posted and updated on social media, so be sure to check out the Lheidli T’enneh Health Center’s Facebook Page for up-to-date information.
Community kitchens help bring people together, teaching how prepare meals while providing food to families. Lheidli hosts two community kitchens – one on the Northside and one on the Southside. They are a great opportunity for learning how to eat healthy and develop skills to prepare healthy and affordable meals.
This program helps promote the health of babies and children, teaching parents about prenatal health, nutrition, early literacy and learning, as well as physical, emotional, and mental health initiatives.
Mental Health Crisis Management
Mental health affects everyone. With a selection of resources available, you can learn how to improve your own mental health as well as better understand mental health illness like depression, anxiety, or even suicide.
Alcohol and Drug Abuse
Learn how to reduce alcohol and other substance abuse. There are resources available to help you achieve healthier alternative lifestyles or support individuals and families struggling with their own addictions.
Aboriginal Diabetes Initiative
First Nation communities face high rates of diabetes. Lheidli T’enneh offers resources to increase education and awareness of diabetes, support for healthy eating and physical activity, and screening for early detection of diabetes.
Community Health Promotion and Injury/Illness Prevention
Maintaining health can be different for everyone. Lheidli offers a range of activities and programs to help promote maternal and infant health, child health, school health, adolescent health, adult health, and Elder health.
Mobile Support Team
Partnering with Northern Health, this team of three offers one-on-one counselling services on reserve. This can be over a walk, talking in person, or in whatever way best accommodates someone in need of counselling.
Early treatment and culturally safe care and support can help people with HIV/AIDS live longer and healthier lives. Lheidli provides education and activities so help band members better understand and prevent HIV/AIDS.
Drinking Water Safety
Safe drinking water is an issue that affects First Nations communities across the country. Lheidli recognizes this and does weekly collections of water samples on reserve. Working with FNHA, these samples are tested for contaminants and the results are sent to Health Canada. Any findings are presented to the community, addressing any questions or concerns around water and sceptic systems. This ensures residents not only have access to safe and healthy drinking water but remain informed.
Research Home Care
In order to better help those in home care, the Health Department conducts a needs assessment to develop a plan to assist members with chronic or acute illnesses so those individuals can maintain the best possible health, well-being, and independence.
Lheidli T’enneh Learning Centre and Health Office