Maskwacis Health ServicesAbout Us
The quality of health has always been attributed to balance of the self as a whole. With this principle is the belief that the health of one was the health of all within a tribe of peoples so in order to keep balance of a tribe the health of an individual was seen as an integral part of the health as whole. Medicines provided by Mother Earth and the relationships to the environment are directly related to sustenance required for survival as an essential requirement to balance the self. Traditional forms of healing recognize this basic principle as contemporary medicine focuses primarily on the physical well-being of an individual. The traditional form of medicine addresses the well-being of an individual in a holistic manner.
The concept of Maskwacis Health Services evolved as a result of the lack of proper facilities and services available to the residents of the Four Band membership: Samson, Ermineskin, Louis Bull and Montana First Nations. In order to address the unique social, cultural and specific health needs of the increasing population, the leadership envisioned a different approach to Native health care, using traditional healing methods, as well as, contemporary healing practices, while maintaining respect for the cultural and spiritual beliefs of our forefathers.
A major milestone was crossed with the establishment of the Maskwacis Health Board in 1983. Hours of hard work and planning saw their dream become reality with the opening of a new facility on September 17, 1987. Since then numerous programs and services have been implemented to accommodate the growing demand for healthcare in our communities. However, due to funding cut by Health Canada, a few critical programs and services had also been cancelled.
Some major milestones were achieved in the new millennium; in 2003 the composition of the Board was changed from elected leadership to non-political representation from each of the four bands. This was a choice of the leadership due to the fact that the time of the leadership was very limited and they saw the need to separate the political, governance and administrative aspects thus creating a three pillar process of addressing health issues.
Another significant move in 2005 was the development of a better communication process within the organization to better serve the membership of the Maskwacis Cree by developing a stronger relationship with the David Thompson Health Region Authority. This relationship continues to build on identifying issues affecting First Nations clients within the DTHR zone of health service delivery.
The Maskwacis Cree were also very influential in the development of the Tipi Model as the administrative process for health service delivery for the Treaty Six First Nations members. Elders from the Maskwacis area identified the importance of utilizing our own values and principles in delivering health services in a holistic manner therefore the development of the Tipi Model was seen as an essential tool for addressing the issues in a culturally appropriate way.
Maskwacis Health Foundation
The Maskwacis Health Foundation was incorporated on the 27th of March 2009. The Foundations Corporate Access Number is 501461522 and the Service Request Number is 12949990. The Registered address of the Foundation is P.O. Box 100, Maskwacis, Alberta, T0C 1N0. The Maskwacis Health Foundation was established to acquire lands, by purchase or otherwise, erect or otherwise provide a building or buildings for social and community health related purposes, for example a hospital, and impatient treatment facility and a community center. The Foundation will also access additional funding through various ventures and from various sources in order to provide health related activities which fall outside the scope of the present funding arrangements with F.N.I.H.B. In addition, the additional objects of the society include, but are not limited to; encouraging and promoting amateur games and exercises, to provide a meeting place for the consideration and discussion of questions affecting the interests of the community, to establish and maintain a library (archives) and reading room, to provide all the necessary equipment and furniture for carrying in its various objects and to sell, manage, lease, mortgage, dispose of, or otherwise deal with the property of the society. Should you require any additional information with regards to the philosophy or operations of the Maskwacis Health Foundation, please do not hesitate to contact Randy Littlechild, Executive Director, Maskwacis Health Services.