HARC Affiliates present three times at Creating Space 14 in Halifax, NS.

On May 3-5, 2024, HARC affiliates presented three times at Creating Space 14 in Halifax, NS. Hosted by the Canadian Association for Health Humanities, this annual conference focused on the theme, “Re-Imagining Belonging and Kindness.”

  1. HARC Research Director, Sarah de Leeuw, and Post-Doctoral Fellow, Darian Goldin Stahl presented “Let’s Get Critical: The ‘Scholarship’ Competency, CanMEDS, the 2025 Emerging Concepts of Physician Humanism, and Research with Medical Students who Reviewed Health Humanities Initiatives from Around the World.”/

    Abstract: This paper presents findings from a qualitative, participant informed project looking (in part) at the potential of undertaking secondary health humanities research (defined as literature reviews, summaries, analysis, and/or collation or synthesis of existing research) as a means of honing critical anti-oppression competencies in medical students. We argue there is a gap in knowledge about the CanMEDS 2015 ‘Scholar’ competency’s ability to inform or strengthen especially the ‘Communicator,’ ‘Collaborator,’ and ‘Health Advocate’ competencies. After reviewing both the broad contours of the CanMEDS 2015 Competency Framework, recent recommendations to cover competency gaps in the CanMEDS 2025 Emerging Framework, and the larger goals of a research project that employed eight diverse Research Assistants, including six medical students, we focus on and discuss their responses to undertaking a yearlong scoping literature review about global health humanities initiatives. Student responses were collected via survey and thematically analyzed in reference to the CanMEDS Competency Framework and growing expectations about the 2025 Emerging Concepts of Physician Humanism; Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Social Justice; Indigenous Health; and Anti-Racism. The paper concludes with a discussion about ways that participating in secondary research can, despite perhaps not intuitively appearing to hold capacity for sharpening anti-oppression and social justice skills, nevertheless grow ‘Health Advocate’ and ‘Collaborator’ competencies. Our findings offer insight and potential for medical educators to use scholarship and secondary research projects as means of expanding critical anti-oppression skills of medical students.

  2. H.E.A.L. Healthcare Research Manager, Nicole Halbauer, and Digital Archivist, Michelle Roberge presented “H.E.A.L. Healthcare: An Introduction to the Hearts-based Education and Anti-colonial Learning Project.”

    Abstract: Longstanding and well-established health disparities exist because of racist, colonial, able-ist, geographic, economic, and gendered inequities. Our team believe arts and humanities have an unrealized potential to disrupt these inequities. This presentation introduces the H.E.A.L. Healthcare project. H.E.A.L. Healthcare is centered in Northern BC and unfolds across Canada. The project brings together artists, writers, activists, and people with lived experience to create arts-based anti-oppression learning materials for healthcare educators, professionals, and practitioners wanting to address biases and ‘-isms’ that permeate healthcare systems and culture. The presentation will offer insights into how this arts-based online learning tool was built using a decolonizing approach by the H.E.A.L. team. The presentation will also provide a “tour” of the healhealthcare.ca website, where all online arts-based tools are housed.

    Our work begins from the premise that healthcare is both an art and a science, and that the Health and Medical humanities are growing interdisciplinary fields bringing together health and medical sciences with arts to make actionable change. The H.E.A.L. Healthcare project provides a platform for healthcare professionals to take action to decolonize their practice, using arts as a mechanism for change. By the end of the presentation, participants will have learned about the H.E.A.L. Healthcare Project, understand why using arts-based learning is an effective way to decolonize practice, and be provided examples of the arts-based learning tools available to them to use and share with their colleagues.

  3. H.E.A.L. Healthcare Artist-in-Residence Lisa Boivin facilitated “Indigenous Lens,” a photovoice workshop.
    Participants were given packages, which included various animals and props, along with explanations of the meaning of the animals in relation to Indigenous culture. With these props, participants were invited to explore ideas of health through setting a scene (or 3) of props and taking photos of them. The animals were the teachers and it was so interesting how participants were able to make connections to their own selves and contexts through these photos.