MOU signed be­tween Sik­sika Health Ser­vices and Alta. Rec. and Parks As­soc.

Prairie Post (West Edition) - - Prairies -

On Oct. 27 at the Al­berta Recre­ation and Parks As­so­ci­a­tion’s 2018 Con­fer­ence and En­er­gize Work­shop in Jasper, Sik­sika Health Ser­vices (SHS) and Al­berta Recre­ation and Parks As­so­ci­a­tion (ARPA) signed a Mem­o­ran­dum of Un­der­stand­ing (MOU) to for­mal­ize their im­por­tant part­ner­ship.

This his­toric event marks ARPA’s first ever MOU sign­ing with a First Na­tion in its 67 years of ex­is­tence.

Both par­ties are proud and hon­oured to em­bark on this mon­u­men­tal jour­ney to­gether.

HS and ARPA share be­liefs that recre­ation and parks in Al­berta are vi­tal to our in­ter­con­nected so­cial fab­ric, and con­trib­ute sig­nif­i­cantly to im­proved holis­tic health out­comes for all.

The two or­ga­ni­za­tions aim to col­lab­o­rate in ser­vice de­liv­ery, re­search, and dis­course on mat­ters of mu­tual in­ter­ested to:

• Achieve proven ben­e­fits linked with recre­ation and parks: en­hanced men­tal and phys­i­cal well­be­ing; en­hanced so­cial well­be­ing; stronger fam­i­lies and com­mu­ni­ties; and deep­ened con­nec­tions with na­ture;

• Work to­wards im­prov­ing key health in­di­ca­tors such as life ex­pectancy, de­pres­sion, suicide, and obe­sity rates for com­mu­nity mem­bers, and in par­tic­u­lar for First Na­tions, who on av­er­age ex­pe­ri­ence poorer health in these ar­eas;

• En­hance col­lec­tive un­der­stand­ing of best prac­tices and long-term ben­e­fits of the role of recre­ation and parks;

This agreement is a liv­ing doc­u­ment – a com­mit­ment to jour­ney to­gether and learn from one an­other as col­leagues and friends.

The part­ner­ship be­tween SHS and ARPA is grounded in mu­tual re­spect, and a shared com­mit­ment to up­hold the rights out­lined in the United Na­tions’ Dec­la­ra­tion on the Rights of In­dige­nous Peo­ples, and the calls of Canada’s Truth and Rec­on­cil­i­a­tion Com­mis­sion.

Sik­sika Health Ser­vices (SHS) is an ac­cred­ited health care sys­tem for the Sik­sika Na­tion, guided by the tra­di­tional Black­foot value of Akat­soots'siskaopa ("heal­ing each other to­gether"). SHS pro­vides a range of qual­ity health ser­vices to all Sik­sika Na­tion mem­bers and sur­round­ing com­mu­ni­ties.

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