NACM embarks on Core Competencies Project
July 30, 2018
NACM’s vision for education is that where there are services there will be education. This vision inspired NACM to begin to articulate the core competencies of Indigenous midwifery, as a key component in NACM’s aim to increase the pathways to education, decolonize training experiences, remove funding barriers to midwifery practice, and support retention.
This framework will serve as a national occupational standard to support further development of critical human resources, educational resources and career planning tools. The Core Competencies Project is being undertaken in partnership with Save the Children Canada (SCC) and is funded with support from Johnson & Johnson.
In July 2018 NACM started a consultation process with Indigenous midwives to identify key competencies for the development of a National Indigenous Midwifery Competency Framework. Following this, NACM conducted a national Indigenous midwifery occupational survey. Through this survey, NACM aims to understand the size and profile of the Indigenous midwifery sector, expected attrition and anticipated changes in the employment patterns in order to meet the needs of the Indigenous community.
Following the survey, a group of NACM members from across the country came together in Toronto for a core competencies workshop. Indigenous midwives present at the workshop represented different geographic regions, registered and exemption midwives, First Nations, Inuit and Metis midwives, and different levels of experience. Facilitated by the Competencies Group, the midwives spent two days mapping out the unique roles of Indigenous midwives and the aspects of care that we provide. Together the midwives developed a set of core competencies for Indigenous midwifery in Canada. The next step of this project will be to have these core competencies reviewed by the wider NACM membership, with the end goal of a set of core competencies of Indigenous midwives developed and validated by Indigenous midwives.
Finally, NACM is undertaking a public engagement strategy with government, midwifery associations, and midwifery education programs and stakeholders in Canada. The work on this project will continue until June 2019. NACM member Cheryllee Bourgeois is working as the Project Lead to support the development of the Framework and NACM member Evelyn George is working as the Partnership Development Coordinator to support the public engagement strategy, supported by the NACM SCC committee.