Indigenous Perspectives Society

IN Perspective

Indigenous Knowledge Keeper

This is a shared position whereby the successful candidate will work a rotating schedule (3 days and 2 days) between, two partner agencies, Indigenous Perspectives Society & Surrounded by Cedar Child & Family Services.

Located on the traditional territories of the Lkwungen people, Indigenous Perspectives Society (IPS) is a charitable and not-for-profit social enterprise that offers training, consulting, and projects to help foster a deeper understanding of Indigenous perspectives, cultural differences, and the need for self-determination. By creating excellence through training and leadership, we help strengthen lives and build successful relationships in the communities we serve.

Located on the traditional territories of the Lkwungen people, Surrounded by Cedar Child & Family Services (SCCFS) strives to provide child and family services strongly rooted in Indigenous cultural values and worldviews while ensuring urban Indigenous children and youth grow up connected to family, community and culture. As an urban Delegated Aboriginal Agency and through its delegation agreement, SCCFS administers C4 services under the Child, Family and Community Services Act (CFCSA). All delegated work is guided by the Aboriginal Operational and Practice Standards and Indicators (AOPSI). At present, Surrounded by Cedar does not deliver child protection (C6) services.

Position Overview:

Reporting to the Executive Directors, the Indigenous Knowledge Keeper will have a range of responsibilities within both organizations and will be dedicated to advising and guiding the leadership of the workplaces toward a more focused and knowledgeable approach to working with the local Indigenous community.

In working with IPS, the Indigenous Knowledge Keeper will be an integral part of a team working to create a training model rooted in cultural understanding for staff and volunteers.

In working with SCCFS, the Indigenous Knowledge Keeper will provide a range of cultural support to all program areas, while offering support, guidance, advice and encouragement to all agency staff, children and youth in care, caregivers and birth family members.

Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Act as cultural advisor, providing strategic advice to all levels of leadership, in order to nurture a better understanding of the specific needs of Indigenous communities.
  • Provide cultural support, either one to one, or in a group, to employees who have experienced mental, spiritual, emotional or physical crises and/or traumatic events or to staff who are the subject of cumulative stress or vicarious trauma.
  • Help to break down stigma and systemic barriers and provide support and guidance on culturally appropriate services and programs.
  • Participate in the delivery of training and/or culturally appropriate workshops as needed.
  • Strengthen the capacity and work of immersion with Indigenous practices and ways of being.
  • Collaborate with employees in the preparation of agency ceremonies and/or events and ensure that appropriate cultural contacts are in place to honour the traditional territories upon which these ceremonies and/or events will take place.
  • Provide a positive, culturally relevant experience for staff
  • Participate in communication and conflict resolution process
  • Participate in staff wellness
  • Inform policies and policy development
  • Maintain the confidentiality of all employees, contractors, children and youth in care, birth family members, caregivers, and other community partners.
  • Maintain the Healing Rooms of both agencies using traditional forms of healing and wellness.

Desired Qualities, Skills and Abilities:

  • Knowledge of the child welfare systems in British Columbia, including Indigenous child welfare and child protection
  • Recognized and respected by his/her own community as someone who has lived experienced and a learned understanding of Indigenous culture and their traditional teachings and they carry themselves within community according to those teachings.
  • Knowledge of or familiarity with Indigenous languages of the local territory.
  • Extensive knowledge of the history and culture of the Indigenous peoples of Canada
  • Knowledge of agencies, programs and supports for the Indigenous community.
  • Engage as a healthy member of both agencies with a strong, demonstrated ability to work respectfully with stakeholders, co-workers, students, community Knowledge Keepers, children, youth, birth family members, caregivers and allies.
  • Maintain a healthy lifestyle and serve as a positive role model and mentor for community members and colleagues.
  • Strong relationship building skills, facilitating traditional forms of dispute resolution as necessary.
  • Maintain a set schedule of hours.
  • Must complete a satisfactory criminal record check that provides clearance for work with vulnerable populations, including children.
  • Must be willing to work from different locations, including the IPS and SCCFS offices.

Compensation/Working Conditions:

  • Salary: $60,000 per annum.
  • The Indigenous Knowledge Keeper will be based in-house, rotating their schedule between both organizations. They will be considered an employee of the societies and therefore subject to the policies and workplace standards in place for all employees.

Job Description – 2019 Knowledge Keeper JD

As per Section 41 of the BC Human Rights Code, and based on the uniqueness of this role, only applicants who self-identify as First Nations, Métis and/or Inuit will be selected for an interview.

Interested candidates are invited to submit a letter indicating their interest and qualifications for the position by December 27, 2019 to rachelled@ipsociety.ca, or mail to 664 Granderson Road, Victoria BC, V9B 2R8.

For all Indigenous Perspectives Society employment opportunities visit https://ipsociety.ca/about/employment/ 

ALL MY RELATIONS: Support our Two Spirit and Indigenous LGBTQ* Youth

You are invited to participate in Indigenous Perspectives Society’s FREE workshop: ALL MY RELATIONS: Support our Two Spirit and Indigenous LGBTQ* Youth.

  • Date: Saturday, November 30, 2019
  • Time: 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • Location: Indigenous Perspectives Society, 644 Granderson Road, Langford, B.C.
  • RSVP: Although free, you must register, and spaces are limited! Registration: https://ipsregistration.ca (under “Training and Workshops”).

This is a 1 day training to come together as community and talk about the resilience and helpful supports of our Two Spirit and Indigenous LGBTQ youth. This training is appropriate for youth, families, and workers who wish to deepen existing knowledge, learn more about ways to be inclusive and access to supports. This day will be facilitated by Artemis Fire and include a panel that includes sharing from youth, a community support worker, and a Two Spirit elder.

This workshop is FREE (with limited seating) thanks to the support and collaboration with the Canada Post Foundation and the Victoria Pride Society. Follow the Facebook event page for updates, workshop summary and accessibility information. We hope to see you there!

THIS TERRITORY
The southern tip of Vancouver Island (including Victoria and Langford), the San Juan, and the Gulf Islands are the traditional territories of the Lkwungen (Lekwungen) peoples. Where Indigenous Perspectives Society is located was an area rich with resources shared with the neighbouring relations of Schian’exw (Beecher Bay), Ts’ouke (Sooke), Elwa Klallam and Makah.

Lkwungen means “Place to smoke herring”, Lkwung means “to smoke herring” and Lkwungen’athun refers to the language of the land. Lkwungen traditionally and still to-date unites the Esquimalt and Songhees peoples as one family.

We acknowledge and thank the Lkwungen People, also known as the Songhees, Esquimalt, and Beecher Bay First Nations communities, for allowing us to live, work and play on their lands. We also give thanks to the ancestors, supernatural ones, hereditary leaders and matriarchs, creatures big and small for looking after the rich resources and cultural teachings of this beautiful land.

ACCESSIBILITY

The IPS training room is located on the ground floor with a double door entrance. On this floor there is 1 multiple stalled washroom and one gender neutral, wheelchair accessible washroom.

IPS promotes a scent-free environment.

Indigenous Perspectives Society 25th Anniversary Open House

Indigenous Perspectives Society is hosting an open house to celebrate more than 25 years of excellence in supporting service delivery to children and families.

Date: Thursday, November 21, 2019

Time: 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Location: Indigenous Perspectives Society, 644 Granderson Road, Langford, B.C.

RSVP: Elaine Zamardi, Executive and Project Coordinator 250.391.0007 x 228, elainez@ipsociety.ca

Event Details: the 25th Anniversary Open House showcases Indigenous Perspectives Society’s main training areas of Aboriginal Social Worker training, Caregiver Training, Adoption Online, Cultural Perspectives Training, Agency Training, and Gladue Writer Training. Stop by on November 21st from 1 pm to 4 pm to meet the team, learn more, enjoy a snack, receive a gift, and possibly win a door prize!

Indigenous Perspectives Society (IPS) is a charitable and not-for-profit social enterprise that offers training, consulting, and projects to help foster a deeper understanding of Indigenous perspectives, cultural differences, and the need for self-determination. By creating excellence through training and leadership, we help strengthen lives and build successful relationships in the communities we serve.

The Indigenous Perspectives Society is accredited by CARF International for its Aboriginal Social Worker and Reconciliation from an Indigenous Perspective training. This accreditation decision represents the highest level of accreditation that can be awarded to an organization and shows the Society’s conformance to the CARF standards. By creating excellence though training and leadership, IPS has been supporting communities throughout British Columbia and across Canada for more than 25 years.

To learn more about Indigenous Perspectives Society visit https://ipsociety.ca/.

IPS wins Best First Nations Business/ Entrepreneur at BOWSA

Indigenous Perspectives Society wins Best First Nations Business/ Entrepreneur at the WestShore Chamber of Commerce Best of the WestShore Awards!

A gratitude filled thank you to everyone who votes for us and supports our work.

Rachelle Dallaire, Indigenous Perspectives Society Executive Director

How to Hire for Cultural Competence

 

As human resource professionals, Executive Directors are seasoned in how we screen for education, competencies, skills, knowledge, abilities and any of the previous which may be transferable. We are taught to ask specific questions that elicit the necessary details to assess whether an individual can meet the proficiencies required of most positions. What we need more than anything in today’s world is the ability to assess the cultural competencies of individuals we hire.

While there is no sure way to ensure the individuals we interview truly have exactly what it takes to be the model employee, there are certainly ways in which we can do our due diligence to explore this. Specifically, I would like to focus on assessing for cultural competencies. Often in interviews, the host or interviewer will pose a number of questions pertaining and related to cultural intelligence and conduct. These questions are important, and I advocate heavily that employers include them in their process. What I caution employers and HR teams is to ensure they do not stop there. When I interview potential employees, I ask for real life examples. I ask my candidates to demonstrate how they immerse themselves in intercultural relations both professionally and in their personal lives. Intercultural relations are not something that you do at work, leave on the desk for the night and pick back up in the morning or on Monday morning.

It is an entrenched practice, a set of values, deep beliefs, and piece of your core. It is something that you adamantly stand for. In fact, a workplace that does not promote strong intercultural competencies is not something you stand for, nor would you work for. Ask potential employees why cultural competency is a part of their practice, how they do this, what their values are around cultural competency, and what they believe happens in the absence of those competencies. Encourage potential employees to talk about times that the absence of cultural competency in the workplace hurt the employees and the organizations. Follow that up with a request for examples they have of how cultural competency grew a team, how it enhanced the workplace, how it presented vast opportunities for enriched dialogue and experiences, and how productivity and team ship thrived. Examples are key to ensuring that a candidate has not simply committed a textbook or article to memory.

As a more comprehensive process, I have often advocated that having a dialogue around cultural intelligence is critical. This dialogue in an interview might include a preamble about what cultural intelligence involves (knowledge, skills, and metacognitions) and then an exercise whereby the candidate is able to contextualize themselves within it. They might explain how they were raised, messages they received as children about cultural diversity, experiences they had in grade school, an important person’s influence into their intercultural development, or an audio visual message that stayed with them. They may go on to talk about their learning and experiences as an adult and how they come to find themselves interviewing with you. It is critical that they include the mistakes, errors, missteps, regrets, and missed opportunities their journey took them through. That is the skills component! Skills are acquired through experience and immersion, so this portion of the interview is critical. Confident allies who have truly acquired cultural competence are confident candidates who can talk about their learnings and from there hopefully feature their successes. From that point is still the added opportunity for your candidate to highlight how they continue to challenge themselves about their own current thinking, which is the metacognition component.

I encourage interviewers and human resource personnel to not rush this important part of an interview. Place equal value, if not more importance, on it. Be patient, listen carefully. Honour the difficult journeys that were far from perfect, perhaps more gifts came from them. Do not judge the journeys that are shared with you, they took courage. And most of all honour the hard work from our allies, we need them in our work places.

Indigenous Perspectives society will be launching updated Executive Director Training in 2020 and more information can be found at https://ipsociety.ca/training/leadership-and-human-resources/executive-director-training/

Rachelle Dallaire, Executive Director, Indigenous Perspectives Society