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Northern Health E-Brief

The Healthier Northern Communities ebrief is produced by the regional Population Health program (Population and Public Health, Northern Health). In the spirit of healthy people who live, work, learn, and play in healthy communities across the north, the ebrief delivers information on resources, learning events, funding opportunities, and other information specific to promoting healthy living and the prevention of chronic disease and injury.

January 21-27 is National Non-Smoking Week

Most people who smoke want to quit. The good news is that there is assistance available through 2 provincial programs. QuitNow offers counselling by email, phone, or text. Participate in online forums with others who are quitting, and access great information and tips. The BC Smoking Cessation Program also offers 12 weeks of free nicotine replacement therapy like patches, gum, lozenges and inhalers. You may also be eligible for smoking cessation medications. For more information visit or call HealthLink BC at 8-1-1.

Food for Thought

·         Increasing workplace wellness can be as easy as encouraging walking. Read more here: Why employers should promote workplace walking

·         The Public Safety and Solicitor General reports over 48,000 British Columbians participated in the cannabis legislation engagement process over the past couple of months.  Check out stakeholder submissions including Northern Health’s Medical Health Officers submission and educational information on cannabis. 

·         Walking the Red Road – Scene PG article on the great work of the Cariboo Action Training Society at Camp Trapping

·         Looking to increase use of your community’s bike lanes? Check out this article: Tailored education could increase use of city’s bike lanes

·         Youth from Blueberry First Nations produced a song and music video entitled Where Happiness Dwells that explores themes of displacement, what it means to be Indigenous growing up in Northeast BC, and the future of their community


Cannabis Talk Kit – a resource for parents

Talking to teens about cannabis is important. There is a lot of misinformation out there and we want to provide them with the facts in a supportive, respectful, and open conversation. Check out the free guide produced by Drug Free Kids to get the conversation started.

Workplace Mental Health resources and tools

The Mental Health Commission of Canada has identified workplaces as a key area of focus for their work in mental health promotion. They are committed to helping employers create and maintain mentally healthy workplaces by providing tools and support. Tools such as:

·         Mental Health First Aid

·         Road to Mental Readiness Courses

·         The Working Mind Courses

Northern First Nations Caucus Overview of Sub-regional Engagement Sessions: Health and Resource Development Impacts and Overview

This report focuses on the common challenges and opportunities for northern First Nations communities in relation to existing and proposed resource extraction and development. A full report and summary of 3 sub-regional community engagement sessions on the topic, held in 2015, can be found on Northern Health’s Health and Resource Development webpage.

BC Chronic Disease Dashboard – BC Centre for Disease Control

This interactive site provides summary statistics on a variety of non-communicable diseases and conditions in BC. Updated annually, this tool makes chronic disease statistics available to anyone; local governments, health professionals, community organizations and the general public.

Community Events

January – Alzheimer’s Awareness Month

Every year the awareness campaign from the Alzheimer’s Society of Canada is designed to fight the stigma of dementia and challenge perspectives on what it means to live with dementia. For more information and resources visit

January 20-21, 2018 – BC Avalanche Awareness Days

Visit Adventure Smart for more information on avalanche awareness and all winter sports and recreation.

January 20-28, 2018 – International Snowmobiling Safety Week

Review BC’s snowmobile laws and regulations, safety tips, study information and complete the low cost online Snowmobiling Safety Course.

January 31, 2018 – Bell Let’s Talk Day

On Bell Let’s Talk Day, Bell will contribute 5 cents towards mental health initiatives by counting every text, call, tweet, Instagram post, Facebook video view and Snapchat geofilter. Break the silence. Educate yourself to help fight stigma and start the conversation.

Feb 7, 2018 – Winter Walk Day

Winter Walk Day is celebrated by schools across Canada on the first Wednesday of February. Resources and a fantastic playlist are available; register your school to receive a certificate of participation.


February 24, 2018 – Coldest Night of the Year Winter Walk-a-thon

Terrace, Prince George, and Fort St. John

Join with over 100 communities across Canada in the “Coldest Night of the Year”, a 2km, 5km, or 10km family-friendly winter walk-a-thon and meal in support of the hungry, homeless and hurting. To register and for more information visit their website.

Funding Opportunities

BC Physical Literacy for Communities (PL4C)        

Deadline – January 31, 2018

The PL4C initiative, as part of the BC Physical Activity Strategy and funded by the Ministry of Health, will provide funding and support for 17 communities over the next 3 years to improve the development of physical literacy and raise the level of physical activity and health in communities. For more information, eligibility criteria and application forms visit, and register for an informational webinar on January 10th, 2018 10:30am PST.

Breakfast Club of Canada Grant     


Interested in setting up a breakfast program in your school? The Breakfast Club of Canada believes that children and youth are entitled to a healthy breakfast every morning before school. The first step in securing funding for your program is to complete the application form. Several factors can influence the waiting period for funding, including financial, geographic, and human resource considerations. To learn more email

2018 KidSport BC Grants     


KidSport BC provides grants (of up to $400) for children ages 18 and under to participate in a sport season of their choice. The aim is to eliminate financial barriers to sport participation, “So All Kids Can Play”. Visit for more information and to apply.

Smart Cities Challenge         

Application Deadline: April 24, 2018

This competition is open to all municipalities, local or regional governments, and Indigenous communities across Canada. The challenge will empower communities across the country to address local issues their residents face through new partnerships, using a smart cities approach (data and connected technology). Four prizes totaling $75 million are available to be won. For information and to apply visit the Government of Canada website.

Education/Learning Opportunities

Medicine Wheel & 12 Steps Facilitator Training

January 20-22, 2018 – Positive Living North, Prince George

Trains facilitators to implement this video-based curriculum in their communities. The program was developed to provide a culturally appropriate 12 Step program for Native American people. This program was developed by White Bison, Inc. based on the Teachings of the Medicine Wheel, Cycle of Life, and the Four Laws of Change. To learn more or register visit or call 1-877-871-1495.

Appetite to Play Workshops           

Appetite to Play (ATP) is designed to support early years providers to promote and encourage physical activity and healthy eating for children 0-5 years old. Appetite to Play workshops are happening across the province, and you’re encouraged to join one, or organize a workshop in your community! For information on joining or organizing a workshop contact the ATP Training Coordinator at This workshop counts toward professional development credits for early childhood educators.

WEBINAR SERIES: Workplace Mental Wellness     

Online – Last Wednesday of every month

Do you want to integrate psychological health and safety (PH&S) in the workplace? The Mental Health Commission of Canada (MHCC) is hosting workplace webinars each month. To learn more and to register visit MHCC.

Northern Health Blogs

-          Northwest Fish Tacos By: Victoria Carter

-          IMAGINE Grant: Masset Rollergirls By: Robbie Pozer

-          Presence: the most prized gift of all By: Holly Christian

Additional Online Health Newsletters/Updates

PlanH eNews

PlanH facilitates local government learning, partnership development and planning for healthier communities where we live, learn, work, and play. PlanH supports Healthy Families BC and sends out a monthly eNews bulletin with funding opportunities, learning events, community stories and more. Subscribe at


Are there other opportunities for people to connect within your community in the Northern Health region? Do you have information, articles or resources that you think might be of interest to northern communities? Send your information by email to

These ebriefs are an information service bringing news of relevant health promotion, resources and research to northern communities from the Population and Public Health Programs at Northern Health.  The news items are for information only and do not reflect any official viewpoint of Northern Health.

For more information on the Northern Health’s Population Health Programs visit the Northern Health website at

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If you have any questions about our list and your privacy, please feel free to phone us at: 250.645.6568

Northern Health’s Population Health Team

Centre for Healthy Living

1788 Diefenbaker Drive, Prince George, British Columbia

Next edition to follow in February 2018