First Nations counselling services
If you are First Nations with status, your fees are covered through Health Canada’s FNIHB Short-term Crisis Intervention Program.
If you are First Nations without status, contact us to see how we can help. The Canada Revenue Agency recognizes Registered Social Workers (the ones with the RSW after their name) as medical practitioners & payments can be claimed as a medical expense/tax deduction on your income taxes. In addition, many insurance benefits allow for counselling services and our fees may be reimbursable by your employee benefits.
First Nations people deserve and should expect therapeutic interventions in a culturally safe and respectful manner. We are an organization led by a First Nations director and therapist and we currently have one First Nations therapist available for counselling services. In addition to these services, we are able to provide therapists who have been screened and approved to provide treatment and counselling appropriate to First Nations people through FNIHB.
Any therapist working with First Nations people needs to be an informed individual who has a thorough understanding of the inter-generational trauma caused by years of colonization and assimilation attempts. There are a lot of therapists that present themselves as “First Nations friendly” or sympathetic that remain uneducated about the realities of life as a First Nation person and the issues facing our people today.
If you’re seeking counselling and wondering if a counsellor or therapist is right for you or understands First Nations issues, here are a few questions to ask the therapist:
- Do you have a basic understanding of First Nations culture, traditions, and history or will I have to spend time in sessions teaching you?
- Do you have an understanding of issues facing First Nations people and communities today and how they differ from other populations in Canada?
- What is your understanding of inter-generational trauma?
- What is your understanding of the impact of colonization and assimilation on First Nations people and communities?
- Do you feel that these issues are in the past and not relevant to today?
- Have you ever thought that First Nations people should just “get over it” because it was so long ago?
- Do you understand that there are over 600 First Nations in Canada and that we are all different?
- Can you help me with traditional teachings or counselling? (HINT: This is a trick question. Only Indigenous counsellors and therapists should be providing traditional teachings and practices.) If the therapist is not First Nations, do they know how and when to seek an Elder or Traditional Healer?
- Are you supervised by a First Nations clinician?
READY TO BOOK A FREE CONSULT?
We offer a free 20 minute phone consultation which allows us to get a sense of what’s going on for you and how we can help. This allows you to get a feel for us and we’re the right fit for you. By the end of our consult, we’ll decide together if moving forward in counselling is for you and, if not, where you should look instead. And, just so we’re clear. We’re happy to answer any of those questions up there when you call.