The University of Winnipeg



Indigenous research at UWinnipeg receives a million dollar boost

Dr. Mary Jane McCallum standing in front of books in the library and Dr. Jaime Cidro in front of a plain wall.

Dr. Mary Jane McCallum and Dr. Jaime Cidro

Two of UWinnipeg’s Canada Research Chairs have been renewed for a second term, bringing with them a combined $1 million in Indigenous research. Tier 2 Canada Research Chairs Dr. Jaime Cidro, who specializes in health and culture, and Dr. Mary Jane McCallum, who specializes in Indigenous People, history, and archives, will each receive $100,000 a year over five years for a total of $500,000 each.

UWinnipeg’s Canada Research Chairs are world-class scientists and scholars from diverse fields who are working on new discoveries and innovations that help our environment, health, communities, and economy thrive. 

Dr. Jaime Cidro: Health and Culture

Dr. Jaime Cidro continues her work in developing a comprehensive service delivery model for a sustainable urban Indigenous doula program, focusing on improving supports for birth companions. Her research program is addressing the current gaps in administrative structures, mentoring opportunities, and substantive training, all of which are integral to work-integrated learning environments. The aim is to advance a robust framework that not only supports birth companions but also integrates essential learning opportunities directly into their practice.

In the current phase of her research, Dr. Cidro is concentrating on establishing international partnerships and collaborations. These efforts are geared towards integrating global best practices in perinatal health research, particularly for priority populations. By working closely with healthcare professionals, including nurses and midwives, as well as social service practitioners locally and internationally (Australia and the UK), Dr. Cidro is laying the foundation for a globally informed, culturally based approach to perinatal health to foster a more inclusive and effective model of care.

Dr. Mary Jane McCallum: Indigenous People, History, and Archives

Dr. Mary Jane McCallum’s historical knowledge helps us to better understand the world we live in by shedding light on our past. Dr. McCallum aims to empower Indigenous Peoples to take on a central role in producing, preserving and using historical knowledge.

“Funding is important because it allows me to undertake archival and community-based research in Manitoba and Ontario, create and disseminate work like the Missing Patients Research Guide, the Manitoba Indigenous Tuberculosis Histories and ShekonNeechie websites,” said Dr. McCallum. “It supports Indigenous students, scholars and communities researching and teaching about the past.”

Dr. McCallum and her research team are supporting Indigenous scholars’ and communities’ efforts to research and teach knowledge about the past in ways that support Indigenous self-determination and reaffirm relationships to land, environment, and other people. They also hope to inform Canadian institutions that preserve Indigenous history about access, ethics and research methods.

Dr. McCallum also launched the Nii Ndahlohke/I work art exhibition with Julie Tucker at Art Windsor Essex that ran from September 2024 until June 2024. It is based on her book and audiobook Nii Ndahlohke: Boys and Girls Work at Mount Elgin Industrial School 1890-1914

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