Megan J. Highet, Amy Colquhoun, Karen J. Goodman, the Fort McPherson H. pylori Project Planning Committee, & the CANHelp Working Group

The CANHelp Working Group has conducted community-driven research in Fort McPherson, Northwest Territories, Canada since 2012. In 2015, the Fort McPherson H. pylori Project Planning Committee requested new research aimed at engaging youth and providing opportunities for capacity building. In response, members of the academic research team proposed a photovoice project aimed at documenting the social impact of H. pylori infection in Fort McPherson that would be carried out with youth in the community. In the Spring of 2016, we commenced this project and delivered a series of in-community workshops aimed at building academic research capacity among the youth. We then organized a weeklong trip for three Fort McPherson youth to visit our project offices at the University of Alberta in the Fall of 2016. In addition to other goals, this visit allowed us to teach these youth about how the CANHelp Working Group research proceeds once the academic researchers have left Fort McPherson. Here, we outline the program of academic research capacity building that we developed and carried out through the Fort McPherson H. pylori Photovoice Project. We then describe the benefits that we noted to have resulted through our approach of integrating capacity building opportunities throughout the research process. We conclude with a discussion that supports the call for new and innovative approaches to integrating opportunities for capacity building into academic research as a means for ensuring that projects generate meaningful and timely benefits for Indigenous communities in general, and Indigenous youth in particular.

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