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The RRUN partnership is governed by a Research Partnership Agreement between The University of Regina, University of Saskatchewan, QBOW Child and Family Services, Chief of Beardy’s & Okemasis Cree Nation, Chief of Piapot Cree Nation, Chief of Standing Buffalo Dakota Nation, Chief of Wahpeton Dakota Nation, and Chief of Wood Mountain Lakota Nation.

The activities of the RRUN project are directed by representatives from QBOW, each First Nation, and each University. These activities are supported by community research assistants and university student research assistants.

Community Organization Partner: QBOW Child and Family Services

QBOW is a non-profit child and family services organization providing programming designed to strengthen families, protect children, and support healthy communities.  The agency provides services to five distinct First Nations in Saskatchewan: Wahpeton Dakota Nation, Beardy’s & Okemasis Cree Nation, Piapot Cree Nation, Standing Buffalo Dakota Nation, and Wood Mountain Lakota Nation.   Focused on culture-based approaches, QBOW offers a variety of protective and preventative services, partnering with the communities it serves to deliver community specific, culturally-relevant, and responsive programming.

QBOW’s senior management team represent decades of experience in social work, education, business administration, child welfare, and community leadership. Lois and Marcella have been heading the agency for over five years and Elaine joined the QBOW team in 2019. Together they manage a staff of over 30 across the agency and its two group homes.

Community Representatives

  • Elders Advisory Council
  • Elder Eunice Bear (Standing Buffalo Dakota First Nation)
  • Councillors representing each Participating First Nation
  • Councillor Pearl Tacan (Wahpeton Dakota First Nation)
  • Councillors Crystal Crowe and Marilyn Kaiswatum (Piapot Cree First Nation)
  • Councilor Warren Seesequasis (Beardy’s & Okemasis’ Cree First Nation)
  • Whitney Ogle (Wood Mountain Lakota First Nation)
  • Carmen Fourstar (QBOW CFS Executive Director; Wahpeton Dakota First Nation)
  • Elaine Thomas (QBOW CFS Associate Executive Director; Beardy’s & Okemasis’ First Nation)
  • Isidore Poorman (QBOW Child and Family Services, Cultural Liaison Supervisor)
  • Brock McLeod-Waditika (Youth Representative, Wahpeton Dakota First Nation)
  • Holly Rae Yuzicapi (Cultural Arts Educator, Standing Buffalo Dakota First Nation)
  • Jesse Forrester-Tytlandsvik, (Educator, Tatanka Najin School)

Academic Representatives

  • Dr. Elise Matthews, RN, PhD (University of Regina, Faculty of Nursing)
  • Dr. Jan Gelech, PhD (University of Saskatchewan, Department of Psychology)
  • Dr. Kate Neufeld, MD, FRCPC (University of Saskatchewan, Pediatric Rheumatology)
  • Dr. Katie Collins, PhD (University of Saskatchewan, Department of Psychology)
  • Dr. Monty Montgomery, PhD (University of British Columbia, School of Social Work)
  • Dr. Andrew Hatala, PhD (Community Health Sciences, Max Rady College of Medicine, University of Manitoba)
  • Dr. Christopher Singleton, Psy.D, Registered Doctoral Psychologist (Child and Developmental Psychology, Saskatchewan Health Authority)

Elise Matthews
Project Director

Elise is a Registered Nurse and Associate Professor in the Faculty of Nursing at the University of Regina. Her program of research focuses on the social and cultural context of childhood disability, mental health, and family experiences; impacts of childhood trauma; and critical approaches to conceptualizing “culture” in nursing education.

Jan Gelech
Project Co-Director

Jan is a lecturer in the Department of Psychology at the University of Saskatchewan. She has worked on projects exploring personal and social aspects of disability experience amongst individuals with acquired brain injuries, physical impairments, inflammatory bowel disease, and cognitive deficits. She is trained and experienced in person-centered ethnographic methods, participatory action research, and critical analyses of health and social service systems.

Whitney Ogle
Research Assistant

My Lakota name is Wíŋyaŋ Wašte – which translates to Good Woman. This name was gifted to me on the day I was born from my Unci (Grandmother), Toniya Wakanwin (Holy Breath / Elizabeth Lecaine). This name is my protocol on how to conduct myself on Unci Maka (Mother Earth), within ceremony and how I build relationships around me. I am humbled by this gift and try my best to walk as a good woman.

I come from the Hunkpapa Minicouji Blackmoon Lakota bloodline – my Tiospa (relatives) are the Ogle, Goodwill, Ferguson and Lecaine families. I am a proud member of the (Tatanka Iyutaka) Wood Mountain Lakota First Nation Band.

I am a proud Lakota woman who is dedicated to the New Buffalo (post-secondary education). I value collective approaches in the sustainment of Indigenous methodologies and pedagogies. I have been taught that in everything we do, we must do for the sustainment of the next generation. Through education, I commit myself to sustaining our identity for our children. Some of my most cherished memories are youth culture camps – laying under the stars, sharing in wonderment together and connecting over our collective hopes for the future.

I bring a background of Indigenous social work and creating space in social service and post-secondary institutions for our ways of knowing and healing. I use both linear and circular ways of thinking, perception, and experiences to create an environment of safe and authentic learning and healing. I do my best to navigate holistic and atomistic thinking, connect with a range of peoples lived experiences and build a collective bridge to close the gaps between Indigenous people and Canada. I am a passionate spiritual being who is dedicated to improving the lives of all community members mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

Monty Montgomery

Monty is an Associate Professor in the School of Social Work at the University of British Columbia. He works in the areas of Indigenous research methods, social policy analysis, and First Nations child welfare program development and practice. Over the past 20 years, Monty has worked with Provincial and First Nations governments and non-profit Aboriginal organizations, including Executive Director of the Saskatchewan First Nations Family and Community Institute and Manager for Program and Policy Initiatives at the Caring for First Nations Children Society of British Columbia.

Shae Zyznomirski
Research Assistant

Shae is a current undergraduate student pursuing a Bachelor of Arts, double honours degree in Psychology and Sociology at the University of Saskatchewan. Following graduation, she intends to apply to Clinical Psychology graduate training programs with a focus in Forensic Psychology. She looks forward to furthering her knowledge and gaining experience in research, while working with the RRUN project among others. Shae is passionate about Indigenous justice and hopes to focus on combatting the institutional injustices that Indigenous populations experience throughout her career. In her spare time, she enjoys practicing mixed martial arts, dancing, playing guitar and exploring nature with her dog.

Jordan Wellsch Research Assistant

Jordan is an undergraduate student in the Department of Psychology and Health Studies at the University of Saskatchewan. She has worked on projects exploring 1) the social and psychological contours of contemporary coresidence and 2) public attitudes towards activists with neurodevelopmental disorders. In her spare time, Jordan likes to play cooperative boardgames with her partner and explore coulees with her dog.