FASD Learning Series, Session 5: Navigating Supports

On June 9th, 2021, SFNFCI hosted the fifth session of our seven-part FASD virtual learning series. The series is part of the action items of this year’s disability research project funded by Indigenous Services Canada (ISC). For speakers, we had Michelle Korbo, the Director of Jordan’s Principle for the Saskatchewan region, and Maureen Sebastian, who is the senior advisor, program delivery; both from Indigenous Services Canada. From the FASD Network of Saskatchewan, we had Shana Mohr and Debra Robella. Shana is the training manager and Debra is the provincial support worker whose role is to offer one-on-one support to clients and their families from any community across Saskatchewan. Elder Ernestine Starr opened the session with a prayer and was available for support throughout the session.

What is Jordan’s Principle?

Jordan’s Principle is a child-first and need-based principle, named in the memory of Jordan River Anderson from Norway House Cree Nation in Manitoba. Jordan was born with complex medical needs and spent over half of his life in the hospital while the Provincial and Federal government debated over who is responsible to pay for his home care. Jordan died at the young age of five years old in the hospital. To read Jordan’s story and the history of Jordan’s Principle, click here.

Our speakers from ISC gave a presentation on Jordan’s Principle including updates and changes to the eligibility requirements, application process, and summary of last year’s Jordan’s Principle application. The speakers also talked about changes in the services and products request during the pandemic. For example, they saw a decline in transportation requests and saw an increase in product requests such as food, education assistive devices and technologies (e.g., laptops), and respite. We discussed how to submit a complete application. The speakers recommended making a clear connection between the need of the child and the product or services being requested, i.e., presenting how the requested services or products will help address the needs of the child. Additionally, having all the necessary documentation such as a recommendation from the professional whether it is the doctor, teacher, social worker. Before the end of the session, speakers answered questions from the participants.

In the latter half of the session, Shana and Debra shared the different types of services and supports offered by the FASD Network of Saskatchewan including helping in referrals and documentation required for Jordan’s Principle. The community outreach program offered by the Network provides support to individuals and families affected by FASD across Saskatchewan. The outreach worker also travels across the province doing presentations on FASD in various communities. In addition, they conduct various training and events for families, caregivers, and professionals working with individuals with FASD. To learn more about the support offered by the FASD Network of Saskatchewan, click here.

Participants feedback:

“I referred a client to the JP worker in WDFN, to make an application for a vehicle for her son who was in a wheelchair. This was approved for wheelchair van but they had to pay for registration, etc”

“[like] the content and knowledge of the presenters”

To learn more about the disabilities research project click here.

To learn about the FASD learning series click here.

If you need more info or assistance, please contact our researcher Anuja Thapa @ (306) 250-0740 or via email at anuja@sfnfci.ca or program coordinator Lacey Kaysaywaysemat @ (306) 526- 2566 or via email at lacey@sfnfci.ca

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