Resources for Families and Children



Community Services

Huu-ay-aht provides a wide range of programs and services to its citizens under the Community Services Department. Through these FAQ, you will get to know more about the scope of our work. Please click on the category of your interest to access the sets of questions:

  1. General Information
  2. Medical Patient Travel
  3. Crisis Grant
  4. Cultural program

General Information

1. What does the government do to support Community Health?

Many programs are delivered by NTC and this implies a fee depending on the service:  health promotion, health education, home visits, chronic condition management, education and assessments of needs, connecting to external services, illness prevention (immunizations, vaccinations, flu clinic, pandemic & communicable disease education, prevention and control, pre-natal and neo-natal vitamins and access to care – thru NTC Health Services), and coordination of basic dental services in Anacla. We also assist with coordination of patient travel and medical assistance (prescriptions, medical equipment, cataracts, vitamins and coordination of hospital aftercare). 

 2. How does Huu-ay-aht promote Mental Health?

We offer connection to addictions counselling, supports, treatment centers, travel to treatment, grief and loss workshops, suicide prevention, violence prevention.  This is an area for potential growth. There are glaring gaps in service for citizens. Counselling support is only available on Wednesdays from 10:30 am until 1 pm in the Anacla community. There are not any formal support groups available (AA, NA, children who witness abuse, etc) through the Nation but our community health department can help you connect to the appropriate resources.

 3. Are there any Social Development programs?

Yes, Huu-ay-aht provides social assistance, emergency funding, family violence prevention, funeral subsidy, workshops, low income parent support programming and income tax filing.

 4. What kind of Education Supports can we gain access to?

Education supports include school supply allowance, student recognition, support for learners with extra learning needs, bus passes, recreation support and tutoring.  Child and youth worker at the community school provides cultural and language education, one on one support, afterschool programs and classroom support.  Post-secondary includes formal education tuition (Adult Basic Education, college, university, trades, vocational), living allowance, assistance with supplies and text books, bus passes, career counselling, bus service for the Bamfield Community School children, and emergency supports. 

 5. Do you have any Early Learning Programs?

Yes, we offer licensed early childhood learning environments that are immersed in Huu-ay-aht culture and language. We offer child care (for free) for parents who are working for the Nation or going to school in Anacla.  This program area provides nutritious lunches and snacks as well as connections of families to elders and teachings (children birth to Kindergarten).  We can provide assessments of a child’s development and connect families to external services where needed.  NTC service providers attend the Anacla program as well to assess children’s development.  This program is offered in Anacla  (250-728-3083) and Port Alberni (250-723-0898). Please call the office to find out times and locations.

 6. What is the Cultural program about?

This program offers assistance to citizens who want to learn about Huu-ay-aht culture and includes traditional teachings, cultural protocol, language, craft/art workshops, dance practice, drumming practice, Nananiiqsu (Elders group), cultural events, support for citizens hosting cultural events, assistance with food fish distribution, and educating staff about protocol and traditions.

 7. What is the role of the Family support services?

The goal of this program is to ensure parents have the tools they need to raise their children. We provide assistance to children, parents and families who are involved with the child protection system.  This includes: court advocacy, safety planning, family planning, cultural planning, legal aid support, counselling (one on one), parent education, addiction support, and connection to external services. We also provide support to all parents through education, connections and programming.

 8. What is the Crisis Grant Program?

The purpose of the Crisis Grant Program is to provide one time assistance (per fiscal year) to individual HFN citizens experiencing unforeseen hardship or crisis. Applications can be made through the community health department.

 9. How do you communicate with citizens?

We provide website updates about important Huu-ay-aht community services news, posting events and information and job or training opportunities and internal communication systems.


Medical Patient Travel

1. What is it?

Medical patient travel benefits are available to assist clients to access medically required health services that cannot be obtained in the community of residence.

2. Where does the policy/funding come from?

The funding for this program comes from First Nations Health Authority (formerly it was Health Canada). The program is only facilitated by the Huu-ay-aht First Nations. HFN does not set the policy or procedures for this program. If HFN does not follow the policy, it does not get reimbursed either.

3. What are the travel rates?

  • $0.225 per kilometer paved roads.
  • $0.29 per kilometer gravel roads.
  • $10/day meals (must be 6 hours traveling).
  • Hotel rooms & taxes (no incidentals) – must be efficient and economical.
  • Extra funding may be available for travel costs of an escort (patient must be medically incapacitated or a minor child).

4. What is covered under the program?

Benefits may be provided for patients to access the following types of medically required health services:

  • medical services defined as insured services by BC Medical Services (e.g. physician, specialist, hospital care);
  • diagnostic tests and medical treatments covered by provincial/territorial health plans;
  • alcohol, solvent, drug abuse and detox treatment;
  • traditional healers (must be pre-authorized); and
  • Non-Insured Health Benefits (vision, dental, mental health).

5. How long will it take to process my request?

The HFN requires a minimum of 3 business days to process requests. Please ensure you call the office 1-888-644-4555 to talk with the coordinator as soon as you know your appointment date.

6. Can I or someone else make arrangements for my son or daughter’s (relative’s) travel?

Yes, provided you child is under the age of 18 years. If your child is older than 18 years, you could still make the arrangements if you are the legal guardian. If you are not the legal guardian, then the patient must make the arrangements for him/herself.

7. What information is needed when I phone in a request for travel benefits?

  • Name of patient
  • Date of Birth
  • Status #
  • Mailing address
  • Phone #
  • Dr.’s Name
  • Type of Doctor (Ear, Nose and Throat, optometrist, dentist, dermatologist…)
  • Location of Doctor’s office
  • Time of apt
  • Date of apt
  • How are you getting to appointment (driving, bus, boat…)?

8. What is not covered?

  • Compassionate travel;
  • Appointments for clients in the care of federal, provincial or territorial institutions (e.g., incarcerated clients);
  • Court-ordered treatment/assessment, or as a condition of parole, coordinated by the justice system;
  • Appointments while travelling outside of Canada;
  • Travel for clients residing in an off-reserve location where the appropriate health services are available locally;
  • Travel for the purposes of a third-party requested medical examination;
  • The return trip home in cases of an illness while away from home other than for approved travel to access medically required health services;
  • Travel only to pick-up new or repeat prescriptions or vision care products;
  • Payment of professional fee(s) for preparation of doctor’s note /document preparation to support provision of benefits;
  • Transportation to adult day care, respite care and safe houses.

Crisis Grant

1. What is it?

The purpose of the Crisis Grant Policy is to provide one time assistance to Huu-ay-aht citizens experiencing unforeseen hardship or crisis.

2. What is a “crisis”?

A crisis is defined as an unforeseen instability or danger, as in health, safety, economic leading to a decisive change; a dramatic emotional or circumstantial upheaval in a person’s life. Examples: lost job, health emergency, inability to meet basic needs (food, shelter, heat), infrastructure required to ensure health or safety.

3. How do I apply?

  1. Talk to Kristen at the Anacla Government Office: 1.888.644.4555.
  2. Fill out the crisis grant application.
  3. Obtain at least one supporting document that demonstrates need or hardship.
  4. Once all documentation is provided, follow up with Kristen to learn if your application is approved.
  5. Obtain Purchase Order if required.
  6. Payments are made to suppliers not to citizens.

4. Why was my application denied?

There are several reasons why your application may get denied. Some examples include:

  • You’ve already received the crisis grant in the past 12 months.
  • No supporting documentation.
  • HFN is last resort and you may be able to access other funding.
  • Reoccurring bills do not qualify (credit cards, cable bills, phone bills).
  • Investments do not qualify – this includes upgrades on a house (unless there is a health or safety concern).
  • There is no more funding available.

5. How long will it take to process my request?

The HFN requires a minimum of two business days to process requests.


Cultural program

1. What is it?

The Huu-ay-aht First Nations created the cultural program in 2011 to provide cultural support to its citizens, government, and administration (programs). Today, the program provides support to the Nananiiqsu Society, Paawats, Bamfield Community School, our children in care, Traditional Foods, Food Fish, HFN communications and general administration.

2. How can I access the program?

Any citizen can access cultural support by contacting the Port Alberni Government Office at 250-723-0100.

3. What can I get help with?

Some things the cultural program can help you with:

4. What is covered under the program?

The following programs are facilitated within the cultural department at HFN:

  • Nananiiqsu Society support
  • Food Fish (Distribution only)
  • Special event requests
  • Dance practices and Culture night

5. What is not covered?

  • We cannot perform cultural ceremonies (including names, brushings, etc.).
  • The cultural program provides support to citizens during non-HFN events and does not facilitate them (canoe journeys, tluu-piich games, elder’s gathering, traditional foods conference, etc.
  • The program cannot provide direction only guidance as to how you can do things. Direction comes from your head of house/chief/family.
  • Cultural program does not set policy and follows policy set by other programs.

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