Week 16

A decolonizing approach to health promotion in Canada: the case of the Urban Aboriginal Community Kitchen Garden Project


How did the article come across to you as a reader? Is it written clearly and well organized?


This article was very informative and straightforward. It was incredibly clear and succinct, outlining current problems in Aboriginal health, the main causes, and a course of action to take. Although it mostly focused on colonization as a leading factor for Aboriginal health disparities, I am glad it also included “social, economic and political inequities.” It is really a combination of all of them that had lead us and the Aboriginal community to its current health crisis.


Who is the intended audience?


Although this article is a professional research article, I really thought it could be written for the everyday person. I could show this to somebody outside of the social work or health care field and they would easily grasp the concepts presented. I enjoyed the fact that it is an approachable article without too much jargon in it.


Does the article clearly define its purpose? If a research based article, does it present its findings well?


The article was very clear in finding alternatives to the bio-medical approach and health promotion. The solution it focused on was the Urban Aboriginal Community Kitchen Garden Project. It outlined every step of the research process very well from methodologies to findings.


Is the writer sensitive to racial and cultural diversity and is the language culturally and ethnically sensitive?


I think Mundel and Chapman’s style of writing was very appropriate for this type of article. The language used in terms of decolonization was spot on in the way they described health discrepancies, historical injustices, and problems with putting theory into practice. One of my favorite lines was borrowed from Denzin and Lincoln describing how indigenous knowledge is often seen as “quaint and primitive.” This line, to me, was very striking. Not in a bad way. While I was reading it, I found myself nodding along. I feel like this bias was so simply put that anyone reading it would be able to grasp a little bit of the injustice that the aboriginal community faces.


How does the article help a typical social worker in practice?


The Garden Project really encourages social workers to think “outside the box.” Creating a garden may seem so simple, but sometimes we overcomplicate solutions that can be very helpful. I also think that anytime culturally appropriate solutions are address it always expands the social workers’ repertoire a little bit more. Towards the end, I also like how the authors covered the importance of spirituality. As I am someone who is not spiritual at all, when I sit and listen to some of the people I work with, I see how crucial spirituality is in their everyday life. I would encourage social workers to be appropriate and open minded with incorporating spirituality into individualized practices.




2 thoughts on “Week 16

  1. Lauren – thanks for your post. I too love the idea of the benefits of gardening and the simplicity of doing so. You mention that you are not spiritual at all…which I find hard to believe as you are so tied into, present with, and compassionate about child birthing. As person who would identify as being spiritual I have to say that the birth of my daughter was at the top of the most spiritual experiences I have undertaken. Perhaps you are just humble or perhaps you just live spirituality thus do not see it as anything identifiably separate form your everyday experience!? Nice post.


  2. I like your comment from the Denzin and Lincoln article. Yes, these subtle forms of biases are so easy to look past but have major implications for indigenous communities. Thank you for your insights!


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