Canadian Council of Herbalist Associations (CCHA)
Annual Summary – November 2018
The CCHA met for our annual, in-person meeting November 2-4, 2018 in Victoria BC. The following is a summary of our activities over the past year.
CCHA Board of Directors
President – Katolen Yardley – British Columbia
Vice-President – Bree Nabholz – Alberta
Secretary, Treasurer – Kristy Garnet – Alberta
Marianne Beacon – Ontario
Lianna Vargas – Ontario
Megan Tardif-Woolgar- New Brunswick
Daniel Wiseman – Nova Scotia
Savayda Jarone – Nova Scotia
The CCHA team works diligently, volunteering many hours of their time and expertise amidst busy herbal practices to ensure unity and growth within the herbal community.
This year we were pleased to welcome:
- A new herbal association from New Brunswick- The Herbalist Association of NB, represented by Megan Tardif-Woolgar. She has joined the insurance sub-committee.
- A new representative from the Herbalist Association of Nova Scotia, Daniel Wiseman. He has joined the social media and newly formed cannabis education sub-committees.
- A new representative from the Alberta Herbalist Association, Kristy Garnet who is our new secretary/treasurer.
Other changes on our board:
- Lindsay Hounslow from the Canadian Herbalist Association of BC is stepping down. We are deeply grateful for her contributions since 2012. Bree Nabholz has stepped into the role of Vice President. The CHA of BC is looking for a new representative to replace her in the Board of Directors.
Achievements & Activities from the Past Year ( 2018)
- Monthly teleconference meetings
- At the previous AGM in 2017, the CCHA Facebook page was created. Since then, we have grown our community to 394 followers.
- The CCHA is diving into a review of internal systems, creation of templates to facilitate faster completion of projects and reviewing Bylaws.
- Ongoing discussion of how to lobby Insurance companies for inclusion of herbal consultations into health care benefit packages for employees and small businesses.
- Ongoing consultation with the NNHPD (details below).
NNHPD (Natural and Non-Prescription Health Products Directorate)
The CCHA has re-established our role as a major stakeholder with Health Canada and has been invited to participate in multiple stakeholder sessions held in 2018. Participation in ongoing NNHPD consultation is a primary goal of the CCHA, as the NNHPD is revamping the current Natural and Non-prescription Health Products (NNHP) regulations. CCHA representatives Bree Nabholz and Katolen Yardley attended several NNHPD stakeholder meetings held in February 2018 and November 2018 (in person, two days long), plus one online meeting.
It has been important to ensure that the CCHA has a presence and voice at these meetings in order to represent the interests of herbal practitioners. Of key concern to the CCHA is the continued validity and use of traditional use claims for NHPs, and ensuring that the Practitioner Compounding Policy is upheld. Currently, the CCHA is offering input into proposed modifications to regulations regarding labelling standards for natural health products.
The Year Ahead
Sub committees were reviewed and new committees created at the AGM. We are opening some of these sub-committees to volunteers to join from within our associations’ memberships. Here are some areas that we are seeking and inviting volunteers to join:
- Marketing and Outreach – To generate greater awareness of our profession
- Social Media – We invite provincial herbal associations to forward herbal related community events being hosted by their professional members, if there are articles or blog posts written by professional members, please forward them to the CCHA via your provincial representative and the CCHA would be pleased to feature these events on social media. Also, tag the CCHA in social media posts posted by your associations.
- Insurance Subcommittee – The CCHA continues to investigate the possibility of extended health insurance coverage for members of the public seeking herbal consultations. Many employers or businesses offer extended health benefits packages for their staff; we are investigating how herbalists may be added to extended health benefits packages for possible consultation coverage. This is proving to be a time consuming task and we invite members of provincial associations who are interested in contributing to this project (via a subcommittee) to put their name forward to their provincial association and the association can pass along the names via their CCHA representative.
- Cannabis Subcommittee – The CCHA has created a brief position statement with regards to the new legislation around cannabis. Please refer to statement. The CCHA will continue to monitor any changes with legislation and how they relate to herbal practitioners.
- Fundraising – The CCHA requires funds to ensure board members are able to attend NNHPD meetings in Ottawa. The board is entirely run on a volunteer basis, so being able to offer funds to cover flight costs is crucial to our voice being heard in Ottawa. This subcommittee is dedicated to developing viable fundraising ideas to further the goals of the CCHA as a whole.
Honouring of Herbal Elders: If a provincial association is aware of a herbal practitioner who has been in active clinical practice for over 25 years, please bring the name and contact information to our attention. The criteria for an herbal elder can be viewed here: https://herbalccha.org/?page_id=38
Additional Goals For The Year Ahead
Visibility of Herbalism – The CCHA is looking at ways of raising the visibility and awareness of herbal practitioners amongst the public.
At Risk Plant Awareness in Canada and Internationally – To make more responsible choices for use, cultivation, growing and medicine making within the herbal community. Stay tuned for periodic updates of plants at risk.
Communications – Facilitate more regular communication between CCHA and provincial Board of Directors. While it’s the role of the CCHA representative to ensure dialogue and communication between the provincial association and the board of the CCHA, we have also created an annual feedback questionnaire for provincial associations which we ask to be returned annually prior to the CCHA AGM. This will assist in outlining priorities and actions for the year ahead. See feedback questionnaire.
CCHA Board of Directors wish you all the very best in your herbal practices and are grateful for the part you play in the growth and strength of our profession.