How Participants Experience London Housing Agencies’ Substance Use Policies

A community-based research project conducted in London, Ontario explored the perspectives of individuals living in emergency shelters and housing agencies who use drugs and are precariously housed. The project was initiated due to a significant increase in opioid overdoses and overdose-related deaths among the homeless population in the city. The researchers collaborated with several housing and emergency shelter agencies and conducted sixteen semi-structured interviews with participants to gather their insights on current substance use and overdose-related policies in place and how they impact their lives. Qualitative analysis methods were employed to identify major themes from the interviews. The findings from this project will contribute to the development of local policies concerning shelter substance use and precarious housing, aiming to establish consistent and comprehensive drug policies by incorporating perspectives from participants, volunteers, and staff in London’s housing and emergency shelter agencies.

Implementing Trauma- and Violence-Informed Care: A Handbook

We are pleased to announce the release of a new book co-edited by CRHESI’s Academic Director, Dr. Nadine Wathen, titled “Implementing Trauma-and Violence-Informed Care: A Handbook.” This groundbreaking book offers invaluable guidance and presents compelling case studies aimed at supporting the implementation of trauma- and violence-informed care (TVIC) practices.

Available now through University of Toronto Press, this comprehensive resource serves as a practical tool for healthcare professionals, educators, and researchers seeking to enhance their understanding and application of TVIC. By emphasizing trauma-informed approaches and addressing the complex impact of violence on individuals and communities, this book provides a roadmap for creating supportive environments that prioritize healing, resilience, and empowerment.

Drawing from extensive research and expertise, “Implementing Trauma and Violence-Informed Care” showcases numerous real-life case studies that illustrate successful TVIC implementation. Many of these cases delve into activities taking place in London, Ontario (#LdnOnt), particularly at Western University (#WesternU) and the Western University Faculty of Health Sciences (#WesternUFHS). These examples highlight the transformative power of TVIC in various contexts, showcasing how organizations and institutions can integrate trauma-informed principles into their policies, practices, and programs.

We invite you to explore this valuable resource to gain insights into TVIC implementation and learn from the experiences of those working to create trauma- and violence-informed systems of care. Together, we can foster environments that prioritize the well-being and healing of individuals affected by trauma and violence.

To access the book and learn more about its content, please visit the University of Toronto Press website

Please reach out to Dr. Nadine Wathen if you have any questions –

Welcome to the Stardust Festival 2023! 🎉✨🌟🎵

An Opportunity for Inclusion and Healthcare Equity

Experience a festival like no other, where the focus goes beyond music and art. The Stardust Festival is proud to support inclusion for the Indigenous community in Northern Ontario and champion healthcare equity. This year, Stardust Festival aims to explore the potential of space research and leverage emerging technologies to provide remote medical care to our rural areas and their residents.

🌌 Bridging Space Research and Indigenous Communities 🌌

Join Stardust Festival as Stardust Festival bridge the gap between space research and the Indigenous communities of Northern Ontario. By bringing these two realms together, Stardust Festival seeks to foster innovative solutions and promote inclusivity in scientific endeavors. Together, let’s explore how space technologies can enhance access to healthcare in remote regions and improve the well-being of all individuals.

🌍 Storytelling and Health Literacy – Lessons from Indigenous Communities 🌍

Engage in thought-provoking discussions during our panel session on “Storytelling and Health Literacy – Lessons from Indigenous Communities.” Discover the power of storytelling as a means to promote cultural safety, awareness, and health literacy among the First Nations of Northern Ontario. Let us inspire further conversations and encourage research on how this compassionate approach can advance cultural safety within the healthcare system.

📅 Save the Date: Fri, Aug 25, 2023, 6:00 PM – Fri, Sep 1, 2023, 6:00 PM EDT

Join us at Timmins 396 Theriault Blvd Timmins, ON P4N 5B6

🎟️ Secure Your Spot:

Embrace the opportunity to contribute to a more inclusive and equitable future. By attending the Stardust Festival 2023, you become an integral part of our collective journey towards supporting the Indigenous community, promoting cultural safety, and championing healthcare equity.

Stay tuned for more updates and information about the Stardust Festival, which will be released weekly in the summer of 2023. And do not worry, the Klingons will be back!

Together, let’s celebrate music, art, and shared experiences while supporting inclusion, cultural safety, and healthcare equity in Northern Ontario. Stardust Festivale eagerly awaits your presence.

#StardustFestival2023 #InclusionMatters #HealthcareEquity

Building Reconciliation Forum 2023

Flying Geese

“Education for Reconciliation: Rebuilding Stronger and with Intentionality” 

Office of Indigenous Initiatives at Western University 

London, Ontario, June 26 – 28, 2023 

Boozhoo, Shekoli, Koolamalsihmwa, and Hello.

Welcome to Universities Canada’s Building Reconciliation Forum 2023! 

The Office of Indigenous Initiatives at Western University is honoured to have been selected by Universities Canada as the host of its eighth annual Building Reconciliation Forum. The theme for this year’s forum is “ Education for Reconciliation: Rebuilding Stronger and with Intentionality.” 

We look forward to welcoming you to the Forum, which will take place on June 27th and 28th, with a pre-Forum day scheduled for June 26th

Building Reconciliation Forum 2023, in-person registration is now closed, but virtual spots are still available. June 26-28 at Western University.

Check out the video:

Building Reconciliation Forum 2023


If you have any questions about registration or the Forum, please contact the Office of Indigenous Initiatives at:

Weight Stigma in Clinical Practice


Multiple studies have found that healthcare providers hold weight stigmatizing attitudes, but few explore how weight stigma happens or how it may be disrupted. In this workshop clinicians and/or clinical instructors are invited to learn the existence of weight stigma in clinical practice and how to disrupt it from Zoe Leyland, PhD, and Eva Pila, PhD. 

More information on this workshop and others can be found:

Learning Outcomes 

By the end of this workshop, participants will understand the existence of weight stigma and learn ways to disrupt weight stigma in practice.


Date: Thursday, June 15, 2023 (6:00 – 8:00 p.m. EST)
Location: Virtual via Zoom
Registration Fee: No cost for participants
Expected Audience: Clinicians/Clinical Instructors

Registration Link

A certificate of completion will be available to all workshop participants.

Questions? Please contact:
Zoe Leyland
EDIDA and Interprofessional Education Coordinator
Faculty of Health Sciences, Western University | 519 661-2111 x85593

Please register by Wednesday, June 14

It is strongly recommended that registration is for an individual and not groups as participation will be involved.

Register Now - Registration linked button