KNC Social Sector Overview

The vision for the Ktunaxa Nation begins with “Strong, Healthy citizens…” – the Social Sector’s objective is to create and maintain vital health and wellbeing systems that are integrated, culturally grounded, easily accessed and oriented to achieving this goal.

COVID-19 Information, April 15, 2021

As the KNGB enters into the two-week shutdown (April 19 to May 3, 2021), all Social Sector staff who are able to work from home are required to do so.

As we continue to respond to the impacts of Covid-19 within an ongoing overdose crisis within British Columbia, Scotty’s, Street Angel, and Recovery programs will continue to operate as usual, with all Covid-19 related precautions in place.

Enhanced screening and cleaning procedures will be made available at these facilities,
as we endeavor to minimize the disruption to our clients while continuing to ensure their health and safety, and the health and safety of our staff as well.

Intake & Referral Documents/Forms For Social Sector Detox, Recovery and Counselling Programs


  • Public Health Nursing Services include clinic visits for preventative health, pregnancy education and baby care, school visits, child health clinics, immunization, community workshops, communicable disease control, environmental health prevention and education, HIV screening and STI education, and harm reduction supplies.
  • Home Care Nursing Services include First Nation and Non-Insured Health Benefits information, direct client care for nursing interventions such as wound treatment, foot care, physical assessments and screening activities, consultation, referral and liaison with other care providers, organizations and institutions, medication management and understanding, palliative care, linkages to community service providers, and learning resources (books, videos and pamphlets).
  • Two Nurse Practitioners: Outreach/In-reach and  Street Angel: nurse practitioners are health professionals who have achieved the advanced nursing practice competencies at the graduate level of nursing education. Nurse practitioners provide health care services from a holistic nursing perspective, integrated with the  diagnosis and treatment of acute and chronic illnesses, including prescribing medications. NP Outreach services are provided to the Ktunaxa Communities.
  • Aboriginal Patient Navigator Services include navigation at the East Kootenay Regional Hospital, advocacy, discharge planning, promoting access to services and assistance in understanding the hospital system, and referral to Aboriginal Community Liaison services.
  • Aboriginal Community Liaison Services include discharge planning, navigation to community services, advocacy, promoting access to community services, assistance in understanding community service systems and referral to Aboriginal Patient Navigator services.
  • Community Dietitian Services include individual and group sessions, diabetes, chronic disease management, lifestyle and nutrition coaching.
  • Community Exercise Therapy Services include recovery from injury, better manage chronic pain such as arthritis and back pain through gentle movement and exercise, improve control of blood sugars with daily light exercise, increase general activity levels at home, in the community or at fitness facility, and healthy activity for weight management.


Urban Services

Ktunaxa Aboriginal Wellness Center: Operation Street Angel provides services to the homeless and vulnerable populations in the Cranbrook area which include nurse practitioner services, mental health and substance use, street outreach advocate and RN, nutrition, advocacy, justice and linkage/referrals to services and providers within the community and region.

Adult Supported Recovery Program: Ktunaxa Nation Council operates a 8 bed supportive recovery residential home in Cranbrook providing life skills, re-connection/culture, community and social engagement, and service linkage to Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people either waiting for or returning from treatment.

Ktunaxa First Nation Health Authority Community Engagement HUB: Community Engagement Hubs bring grassroots voices into the implementation of the Tripartite First Nations Health Plan and work with First Nations communities to help determine and achieve their own health priorities. Community Engagement Hubs (CeH’s) are groups of First Nations communities who agree to plan, collaborate, and communicate to meet their nation’s health priorities. CeH’s also provide a vehicle for First Nations Communities to partner with the First Nations Health Council to implement the Tripartite First Nations Health Plan. CeH’s are collaborations between First Nations communities working through one agreed upon organization. The formation of CeH’s encourages natural collaborations based on tribal and geographical factors, and provides resources to existing capacity.

Regional Social Governance:  Research, develop and assist in the implementation of Ktunaxa Nation social governance systems that support the elimination of the access-to-service gaps currently facing Aboriginal people in the Region.  Overall goal is to have Ktunaxa Governance over an integrated social investment service delivery and governance model for all Aboriginal people within the Ktunaxa Traditional Territory, providing individuals and families access to culturally relevant service through which to gain strength and independence.  The Social Investment Sector Indicators of a ‘Strong, Healthy Ktunaxa Citizen’ have been developed and are a compilation of two decades of sharing, listening and learning. Although there are too many meetings, activities and interactions to list here, the breadth of involvement spanned from Community Gatherings to Band and Sector Council Meetings to Agency, Community and Nation Strategy Sessions. All ages participated from children to Elders and everyone in-between. The Nation’s strategic framework and the vision, values and principles supplied many of the overarching indicators. The majority of child-specific indicators originated from KKCFSS’s work in defining a “strong, safe, supported child”. It was this range of input, both in terms of age, community and type of engagement that created the Ktunaxa Nation’s comprehensive list of Social Investment Indicators.

Connecting to the Social Sector

Social Investment Sector Director: Debbie Whitehead – 250-489-2464, DWhitehead@Ktunaxa.org

KNC Service Center is open 8:30-4:30 daily including the lunch hour. Drop in services are available as well as booked appointments.  Call 250-489-2464 for inquiries or to book an appointment.

KNC Health Registered Nursing Services are open 8:30 to 4:30 daily.

Call 250-420-2700

Tara Fiedler-Graham, MN, NP(F), Nurse Practitioner (250-420-2700 – Tara.Fiedler.Graham@interiorhealth.ca)

Laura Koop, MN, NP(F), Yaqan Nuiky Outreach/In-reach Nurse Practitioner (250-420-2700 – Laura.Koop@interiorhealth.ca)

Cathy Eaton, MN, NP(F), Outreach/In-reach Nurse Practitioner – (Cathy.eaton@interiorhealth.ca)

Catherine Strachan, RD, CDE, Community Dietician – 250-420-2700

Cindy Wales, RN, Aboriginal Patient Navigator – 250-464-1053 (Wed/Thurs/Fri), (cindy.wales@ktunaxa.org)

Diane Whitehead, Aboriginal Community Liaison Services and Intake Coordinator (250-919-5099 – DAWhitehead@Ktunaxa.org)


Street Angels

Open 7 days per week 1 pm-8 pm; Drop-in services, advocacy, mental health services, CLBC support services and Scotty’s House intakes.

Tammy Pocha, Site Supervisor: 250-420-2756  (tpocha@ktunaxa.org)

Scotty’s House: 778-517-4421

Roberta Van Steinburg, Social Sector Business Manager: 778-517-4421, RVansteinburg@Ktunaxa.org


Health Service Administration:

Shannon Girling-Hebert, Administrator, Quality Assurance and Service Integration: 250-427-5879, SGirling-Hebert@Ktunaxa.org

Shannon Girling-Hebert, First Nation Health Authority Community Engagement HUB: 250-427-5879, SGirling-Hebert@Ktunaxa.org


Regional Social Governance:

Melanie Gould, Regional Governance Development Officer: 250-489-2464, MGould@Ktunaxa.org


Four Nation Bands’ Health Departments:

Aqam – St. Mary’s

Dallas Cardinal, RN, Home Care Nurse

Part Time

Health Centre Phone: 250-426-5717

Email: dcardinal@aqam.net

2 Home Support Workers in this community


Akisqnuk First Nation – Windermere

Shelley Soloway, LPN, Home Care Nurse

Mon – Fri

Health Centre Phone: 250-342-6379

Email: ssoloway@akisqnuk.org

1 Home Support Worker in this community


Yaqan Nukiy – Lower Kootenay Band – Creston

Outreach – Brittany Groff, RN, Community Health Nurse

Phone: 250-420-2700

Email: bgroff@ktunaxa.org


Tobacco Plains Indian Band – Grasmere

Heather McDonald, RN, Home and Community Care Nurse

Phone: 250-887-3461 ext. 4307

Email: hmcdonald@tobaccoplains.org

1 Home Support Worker in the community.

Ktuq̓ȼqakyam Newspaper