Exploring the prevention of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder in the Northwest Territories of Canada: Brightening our home fires

  • Dorothy Badry University of Calgary
  • Aileen Felske Mount Royal University
Keywords: Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, women’s health, prevention, Northwest Territories, homelessness

Abstract

Badry, D., & Felske, A. (2013). Exploring the prevention of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder in the Northwest Territories of Canada: Brightening our home fires. The International Journal Of Alcohol And Drug Research, 2(3), 7-15. doi:10.7895/ijadr.v2i3.125 (http://dx.doi.org/10.7895/ijadr.v2i3.125)

Aims: The prevention of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) in a Northern context from a woman’s health perspective was explored in the qualitative research study, Brightening Our Home Fires (BOHF). It is recognized that research on the prevention of FASD is a sensitive topic due to stigma associated with alcohol use during pregnancy. Women’s health and FASD prevention were identified as the focus of the research, as they are deeply intertwined topics.

Design: The BOHF project was designed as a participation action research project that utilized Photovoice as a primary methodology to approach the topic of FASD prevention in the Northwest Territories (NT) from a women’s health lens.

Setting: This research took place in Yellowknife, NT. Participants included both Dene and Inuit women.

Participants: Eight women living in a homeless centre in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories.

Measures: This was a qualitative research study that utilized Participatory Action Research (PAR) to explore women’s health in the North. Photovoice was the primary methodology. The analysis of this research focused on both image and text, and a depth analysis of text led to theme identification.

Findings: Findings included the importance, to women participants, of housing, access to treatment resources for alcohol, and engagement with health-related resources, and the challenges they experience that are related to their histories of trauma.

Conclusions: Engagement with women in the NT on FASD prevention was important in broadly identifying the linkages between trauma and alcohol use while respecting context and stigma around alcohol use and pregnancy.

Author Biographies

Dorothy Badry, University of Calgary
Dorothy Badry, PhD, RSW is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Social Work, University of Calgary. Dorothy's primary research interests focus on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, child welfare, birth mothers and families of children with FASD and disability advocacy. Dr. Badry spent 7 years teaching the BSW in rural, remote and Aboriginal communities in Alberta, and returned to the Calgary campus in 2009. Dr. Badry is a member of the Canada Northwest FASD Research Network Action Team (NAT) on Women's Health, and a member of the Prairie Child Welfare Consortium. Dr. Badry has received funding for projects related to FASD from the Alberta Centre for Child, Family and Community Research (ACCFCR) and the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) and the First Nations and Inuit Health Branch (FNIHB) as co-principal investigator.
Aileen Felske, Mount Royal University

Mount Royal University, Calgary, AB, Canada

Member of the Canada FASD Research Network Action Team on Women’s Social Determinants of Health

Published
2013-05-01
How to Cite
Badry, D., & Felske, A. (2013). Exploring the prevention of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder in the Northwest Territories of Canada: Brightening our home fires. The International Journal of Alcohol and Drug Research, 2(3), 7-15. https://doi.org/10.7895/ijadr.v2i3.125
Section
Papers