Wednesday, September 24, 2014
Text Size

Project works to improve First Nations experiences with cancer treatment

By Shelley Steeves

Senior Correspondent

FREDERICTON – A series of paintings depicting First Nations experiences with cancer treatment will be on display in New Brunswick hospitals later this spring.

The project is called “A New Path” and is meant to improve First Nations cultural sensitivity among health care workers in the province.

Natalie Sappier, the artist commissioned by the province, hopes her works will help to bring communities together.

“Cancer is a really big thing. It’s hitting so many, young and old,” she said.

But having grown up on the Tobique First Nation, she says seeking treatment is often a cultural challenge for First Nations cancer patients.

“When you have elders leaving their community for the first time to do treatment off their community and how it feels,” she said. “That can be a little bit uncomfortable.”

Dr. Eshwar Kumar is co-CEO of the NB Cancer Network. He says health care providers in the province need to be more sensitive to First Nations’ needs.

“I think one of our biggest challenges is that we are not culturally aware of the issues surrounding First Nations communities,” he said. “For example, death is an issue dealt with differently by different communities and one needs to be sensitive to things like that.”

That’s why Sappier was asked by the province to sit in on recent meetings conducted with First Nations communities, patients and New Brunswick health care providers and paint what she heard.

“I sat there and just listened to what they were talking about and put the core of what I was hearing on canvas,” she said.

The project was funded by the Canadian Partnership Against Cancer.

“One of the things we want to make sure is that the front line staff in the hospitals are more aware of what First Nations issues are so that they can deal with them in a more empathetic manner,” Kumar said.

Sappier’s paintings will be displayed at the Dr. George-L-Dumont Hospital in Moncton and the Saint John Regional Hospital later this spring.

Whatever Trevor

Dis is Trevor.

Education & Training

Blast from the past: FP archive

When is Consultation, Consultation?

Ovide Mercredi

National Chief – AFN

During a Treaty Roundtable meeting of the Alberta Chiefs, I took note of a federal government document outlining their strategy to define and ultimately impose their own form of self-government. Read more...

Letting go of residential schools

by Gilbert Oskaboose, Nov 1993 First Perspective

There is a lot of "unfinished business" in Indian Country. Garbage that we as a people have never really dealt with. Chief among them is the whole issue of those infamous residential schools and their impact on people. Read more...


obidiah picture

ANALYSIS - Bill Gallagher

gallagher picture

Under the Northern Sky by Xavier Kataquapit

Under the Northern Sky by Xavier Kataquapit


Regional Media Officer– Temp (Until Nov 2015) –F/T Position

Office of the Leader of the Official Opposition / NDP Research Office

Location:131 Queen Street, Suite 10-02, Ottawa, ON


Communicate regularly with regional media outlets (community newspapers, radio stations, student media, ethnic media, etc.) to propose ideas for interviews and opinion content Read more...

Canadian Chamber of Commerce Aboriginal Workforce Report

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce released a report that highlights initiatives to improve the workforce participation of Aboriginal peoples. 

Opportunity Found: Improving the Participation of Aboriginal Peoples in Canada’s Workforce (December 2013)  

click image to download report

Tue Sep 23 @ 3:00PM - 04:15PM
FNHMA National Conference 2014
Sun Oct 05 @ 9:00AM - 05:00PM
INIHKD & Manitoba NEAHR Conference 2014


September 2014
31 1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30 1 2 3 4

Current Video

RIP Percy Tuesday


Thanks to Althea Guiboche for allowing The First Perspective to share her video taken at the Manitowapow book launch at McNally Robinson. 

Percey sings Freddy Fender's "Wasted Days and Wasted Nights" and people join in to harmonize. 

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO): The Washington Redskins