Greetings and Welcome

“We are thankful to the powers we know as the Four Winds. We hear their voices in the moving air… From the four directions they come, giving us messages and bringing us strength. With One Mind we send our greetings and thanks to the Four Winds.”
Thanksgiving Address   Words Before All Else
Six Nations Indian   Museum Tree of Peace Society

Upcoming Workshops

Winnipeg MB

Friday March 15, 2024

to register go to

Facilitator Training of the Exercise
November 24, 2023

Jann is available to facilitate trainings to those wanting to learn know about working with family systems and Indigenous family care.


Supervision and Consultation

Jann is a Clinical Supervisor-Mentor in the Canadian Association for Couple and Family Therapy. She is available for consultation pertaining to working with families and family systems, Indigenous families and perspectives, and working with two worldviews. Contact her for further information.

Indigenous Family Training


It is key to understand that Indigenous families are communal based. This is an entirely different perspective than the nuclear-based family. Relationships are essential, as are roles. Without understanding relationships as the focus, it can be perplexing and difficult when applying the individualistic approaches of the mainstream when working with Aboriginal families.

This training will provide an introduction into viewing families as a system; a collection of relationships, individuals, roles, values and beliefs. This highlights the wholistic view of the traditional Indigenous family. Colonization brought changes to Indigenous families and communities and unwrapped the family system to a large degree.

Jann teaches using a traditional systemic and experiential approach combined with didactic summaries.

This training will focus on:

  • Viewing the family as a system
  • Viewing the family now following colonization; its strength and its resistance
  • Specific themes common in families now: attachment challenges, multiple losses and grief, intergenerational trauma, survivorship tools, healing paradigms
  • Tools and wholistic approaches for helpers who walk beside the family members

Each workshop will be geared to the context of the participants and their roles in walking beside Indigenous families.

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(Circle and Box Exercise)


The Box and the Circle experiential exercise was created by Jann in 1988.

This one-day workshop presents the two worldviews: Indigenous and Euro-Canadian/mainstream.  It informs the participants of the key components of each worldview.

The teachings and the model of the Box and the Circle have been used globally by professionals seeking to create ways to address colonization and its continuing harmful interaction with Indigenous Nations and cultures. Participants are invited to learn cultural knowledge, the impacts of colonization on the daily lives of Indigenous peoples, and ways to support critical work to advance anti oppressive, inclusive practice. The workshop explores the effects of Residential Schools and Canada’s Policy of Assimilation and how we can work together to impact meaningful change.

Roles, responsibilities, relationships, and gender of the Indigenous circle worldview will be reviewed.  Communication, protocols, and politics of the traditional circle will also be presented. This experiential exercise will give participants information to use in their own daily interactions and work.


This one day workshop is for those who meet the protocols around the exercise and who wish to strengthen their work with Indigenous people. It is a spiritually centered day that includes the story of how the exercise was created, tools for facilitating the exercise, suggestions for creatively using it, and insightful information that can be included when delivering it. The day closes in ceremony.


  • The facilitator has personal knowledge and experience in the two worldviews:  Indigenous and Euro-Canadian/Mainstream
  • The facilitator agrees to practice Indigenous protocol in naming the teacher of this exercise (Jann Derrick), and to preserve and protect its spiritual base
  • The facilitator agrees to follow Indigenous oral protocol and never write down the exercise
  • The facilitator has experienced and trained group facilitation skills which include providing group safety, being comfortable and lovingly able to work with reactive and deep emotional responses, and practices and teaches self regulation tools.
  • The facilitator is self aware of their own trauma levels and triggers to the degree they do not impede the learning in this exercise.

For more information visit:

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About Jann

Jann has been in practice as a Registered Family Therapist since 1978. She is passionate about children and their return to the center of their families and communities.  Jann is of Irish, English and Haudensaunee ancestry and specializes in working with families, parents and communities in order that children can once again be safe, know their identity and where they belong.  She is skilled in working with Indigenous Historical Trauma, Residential School trauma, and its intergenerational effects in families and communities.

Jann devotes her time to mentoring and teaching frontline workers and professionals, supporting service delivery to Indigenous communities, and writing and publishing. Her PhD research focused on Indigenous families and is freely available on the WorldShare academic network ~  KAHWÀ:TSIRE:  INDIGENOUS FAMILIES IN A FAMILY THERAPY PRACTICE WITH THE INDIGENOUS WORLDVIEW AS THE FOUNDATION.

Jann did pioneering therapy work with residential school survivors in Lytton, B.C. in the 1980′s. She has worked at Round Lake Treatment Centre as a clinical supervisor, a trainer of Drug and Alcohol counselors, and as therapist in the Centre’s innovative Trauma Recovery Program for Native Trauma. She facilitated a National Aboriginal Focus Group that created a Code of Ethics for the Aboriginal Healing Foundation.  Jann has worked with the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women’s and Girls Commission as well as the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.  She provides consultation to governments and clinical supervision for Indigenous agencies.

As a Registered Family Therapist, Jann is a Clinical Member and Supervisor Mentor in the Canadian Association for Couple and Family Therapy. She is a member of the Canadian Psychological Association.

She has presented workshops and trainings throughout Canada and internationally in the USA, Australia and New Zealand.

Jann is the mother of three children and the Dotah (grandmother) of nine. Her grandchildren are multigenerational survivors of the Residential School experience and Sixties Scoop, and her family knows the trauma personally.

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My World is Not Your World: Sit and Listen and We Can Learn Together. Journal of Intercultural Studies, Vol 42, June 2021, Issue 3, pp 281 – 299.

Handbook of Family Systems Therapy. Volume 4. Indigenous Families in Canada. Wiley and Sons, 2019

‘Native Couple Therapy: Healing, Growing and Moving Beyond’ in Multicultural Couple Therapy, Sage Publishing, Calif. 2009

‘When Turtle Met Rabbit: Native Family Systems’ in Voices of Color: First Person Accounts of Ethnic Minority Therapists, Sage Publishing, Calif., 2005

‘The Box System and The Circle System: A Model for Understanding Native and Non-Native Issues’. Presented to Mokakit Indian Education Research Conference, Ottawa 1990. Available on ERIC Database Published in Mokakit Education Research Association Journal, First Nations Longhouse, The University of B.C., August 1993, pages 161 - 197.


(250) 319-7033

Salmon Arm, BC