UBC Learning Circle 2013/2014 Year-End Report

Embracing community solutions.

Embracing community solutions.

Executive Summary 

Click to read the entire UBC Learning Circle Year-End Report 2014-2015

The Learning Circle project has been in existence for more than six years. It has evolved over time to expand from the UBC Learning Circle (UBCLC) to include the UBC Aboriginal Youth Learning Circle (YLC). Both circles support communities and individuals to participate and learn in their home communities, schools, or offices. Our work aims to improve health and reduce health inequities between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal peoples in BC. Within the past six months we have expanded to include computer webinar technology as an option for participation, which has increased accessibility of the UBC Learning Circle and Youth Circle.

The three overarching themes for the UBC Learning and Youth Circles are Skills Enhancement, Community Conversations, and Research Dialogues. In each of these areas we attempt to provide health promotion programs which address health and social needs that are defined by communities. We aim to incorporate community knowledge keepers into our planning process to promote the cultural safety of our programming.

The number of sessions increased considerably as the year progressed due to factors such as the development of our existing partnership with the First Nations Health Authority, First Nations Health Directors Association and our other regular partnerships. In the 2013/2014 season, we hosted more than 68 Learning Circles and engaged more than 3,200 participants.

In addition to the growth in the number of Learning Circles, 2013/2014 was a year of change for our organization. Primary staff positions were hired in this spring of 2014. Divina Ridley (Senior Program Assistant) and Leena Minifie (Production Coordinator) came aboard after the fiscal year.

The UBCLC team works closely together to ensure program deliverables are met in all aspects related to planning, organizing, advertising, creating partnerships and delivering effective, community-driven programming to First Nations communities. Our videoconference technology support is provided by FNHA’s Innovation and Information Management Services.

The future of the UBC Learning Circle will focus upon supporting the health and wellness priorities of the FNHA in addition to taking direction from communities themselves on health issues that are relevant in a local context. We look forward to building upon our current successes with the addition of continuing professional development courses/workshops, telehealth training, improving the educational and technical quality of our sessions, and enhancing our online library of health resources.

For more information, comments, or questions about our year-end evaluation, please contact Leena Minifie, at leena.minifie@ubc.ca or call (604) 682-2344 ex. 63475.