Please note that there are two different conference venues:
June 14/15 - Century City Conference Centre
June 16 - Kirstenbosch Conference Centre (transportation available)
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Thursday, June 15 • 09:30 - 11:00
Indigenous Perspectives - Jenn Miller Scarnato, Amanda Urbina, Shane Theunissen

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Indigenous Perspectives

Abstract #56
Title: Moving Images of Resilience: Learning from Video-based Research with Indigenous Peoples of Maya Descent
 Jenn Miller Scarnato (Tulane University, USA)
This paper provides evidence from a case study of documentary production with indigenous youth and elders in the Guatemalan highlands to illustrate the usefulness of innovative video methodologies in researching and contributing to cultural resilience within vulnerable communities.
Methods: A review of the relevant literature shows that video-based research methodologies provide substantial benefits to researchers and participants alike, yet relatively little has been written encouraging the use of video methods in resilience research with marginalized groups. From a framework of narrative heuristics (Abbott, 2004) and situated knowledges (Haraway, 1988), this study describes a participatory-action research project utilizing video methods with participants of Mayan descent. The author advocates the use of video methods in resilience research as a culturally-adaptable means of balancing power in research encounters and privileging participants’ voices and ways of knowing.
Findings: This research process finds unique insight into the resources and processes that enable Mayan communities to transcend inherited and lived experiences of cultural genocide. By emphasizing documentation and encouraging self-research, video methodologies reveal emic understandings and create permanent artefacts that serve a variety of knowledge-generating, advocacy, and empowerment purposes. 
Abstract #268
Title: American Indian Youth Resilience through Cultural Engagement
 Amanda Urbina (University of Arizona, USA)
Co-Authors: Nicolette Teufel-Shone, Nikieia Johnson
Promoters of resilience among American Indians (AIs) include cultural engagement and identity. A partnership between a Boys and Girls Club in an AI community, cultural experts, and public health professionals developed a curriculum to increase opportunities for cultural engagement and build a sense of cultural identity to improve youth resilience.
Methods: Curriculum development, implementation, and evaluation of the Native Spirit program were completed through the integration of the skills of the partnership and informed by an extensive literature review. Pre- and post-tests to identify changes in cultural knowledge and resilience (CYRM-12) were used to assess program impact. A secondary educational achievement was recorded via informal observations and self-reported status of academic grades.
Findings: Fourteen youth participated in Native Spirit.  Pre/post responses demonstrated an increase in resilience scores and cultural knowledge. Short-term observations of increases in positive classroom behavior are aligned with an increase in cultural knowledge and resilience scores, suggesting that greater cultural engagement promotes improvements in academic endeavors of NS participants.
Abstract #24
Title: Comparative exploration of Canadian Aboriginal policies that inform social, educational and cultural resilience with a multinational review of best practices.
 Shane Theunissen (Mout Saint Vincent University, Canada)
Traditional Western oriented policies and initiatives within the context of Indigenous education have been assimilative. But, some Indigenous groups around the globe have adopted strategies that have facilitated linguistic perseverance, cultural resilience, individual and community agency, and socio-economic development.
Methods: Designed in the context of mixed method research methodology, my research paper will constitute a comprehensive evaluation of pre-existing Canadian data. I will ascertain how, if and under what circumstances the globally utilized best practices, of Vibrant Indigenous Noetic Space, Cultural Revalorization, and Heuristic Thinking are in evidence (or not) in Canadian policy for/on Aboriginals.  I will also identify which, if any, Canadian policies and practices are seen as successful by Canadian Aboriginal Peoples?  
Findings: The research presented in this paper fulfils Canada’s Principles of Reconciliation by addressing the ongoing legacies of colonialism, and promotes a shift away from paternal, imposed curricula, and interim solutions, and a shift towards comprehensive policy changes that promote justice on an ontological plane.


Jenn Miller Scarnato

Tulane University

Shane Theunissen

Mount Saint Vincent University

Amanda Urbina

University of Arizona

Thursday June 15, 2017 09:30 - 11:00 SAST
Room 02 Century City Conference Centre