National Data Strategy

What is the National Data Strategy?

The NAFC Strategic Plan 2020-2030 identifies Data Collection and Analysis as an area of strategic direction with the development of a National Data Strategy as a critical success factor. 

A data strategy provides shared values and a common vision that guide data-related decisions. A data strategy outlines actions that will bring us from where we are now to becoming Indigenous information leaders, who honour our traditions by using stories to provide an understanding of urban realities and the Indigenous context. Our stories empower our communities, promote innovation, and provide supports that gives us strong self-determination and self-sustaining direction.

What is the NAFC data working group?

In March 2021, the Data Working Group was formed to create a draft of the National Data Strategy for the NAFC that would then be reviewed by the wider membership of the NAFC. The Data Working Group is composed of representatives from coast to coast to coast and from Friendship Centres, Provincial/Territorial Associations and NAFC.


Re-Development of UPIP Framework

There are significant changes needed to address the sensitive nature of data collection for urban Indigenous communities. NAFC continues to engage with the Friendship Centre Movement to ensure that all key urban Indigenous stakeholders are involved during the re-development of Urban Programming for Indigenous Peoples (UPIP) performance framework and indicators.

NAFC is working with Indigenous Services Canada (ISC) and the Friendship Centre movement to re-develop the UPIP evaluation framework so it can reflect the needs of urban Indigenous service providers. The scope of re-development includes the UPIP Program Framework, the evaluations, reporting processes and the terms and conditions.

Data Strategy Working Group Updates

In January 2023, the NAFC Programs Team brought together our Provincial/Territorial Association (PTA) Technicians and Data Working Group Members to be involved in UPIP renewal and provide recommendations for the ISC-UPIP framework redevelopment. During the indicator assessment meeting, one of the main workshop activities included asking the question:

“What does a successful urban program look like in five years?”.

The data working group was asked to write their answers down on stones decided on how to gather the stones into collections or bundles. Participants shared stories of when they felt they were doing their best work. They were then asked to identify causes, actions, and impacts in the stories they shared.

Indicator Assessment Workshop Photos:

NAFCIndicatorAssessmentWorkshop1  NAFCIndicatorAssessmentWorkshop2NAFCIndicatorAssessmentWorkshop3

Indicator Assessment Lessons Learned

Following the January 2023 engaging with the membership, we were gifted with a collection of thoughts, discussion points, visions, actions, and various other resources. The collection of thoughts will help inform the development of a standardized reporting framework that includes data collection is required for more effective financial and outcomes reporting.

During the January 2023 engagement the following priority areas were identified:

  1. Land
  2. Intergenerational
  3. Culture
  4. Sustainability
  5. Friendship
  6. Inclusion
Community Safety and Wellness Indicators

NAFC continues to engage with existing networks to encompass the recommendations outlined in the 2021 Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women, Girls, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ People National Action Plan. As outlined in the National action plan, there is an increased need for available and inclusive data that can assist with visualizing the current MMIWG2s+ landscape.

One of the Calls for Justice in the report calls upon all governments, service providers, and those involved in research to modify data collection methods to increase accurate, comprehensive statistical data on 2SLGBTQQIA individuals. At NAFC, we are working to ensure the National Data Strategy is representative of urban Indigenous women and 2SLGBTQQIA+ members.

Our current work includes:

  • Assessing current indicators
  • Design of new indicators
  • Elevating issues and proposing solutions (e.g., capacity, security, coordination, quality)
  • Coordinating initiatives and setting priorities

If you would like to learn more about our work and initiatives that support the MMIWG2S+ National Action Plan, you can visit the NAFC Policy Page, or contact Natalie Cahill, Program Coordinator,

Interested in learning more?

UPDATED! National Data Strategy Brochure

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