Jeanette Watts


My traditional name includes Emintchante from my father’s side, and Huukwamiis from my husband’s family. I am the great granddaughter of the late Xax’lip Chief Thomas Adolph, signer of the Declaration of the Lillooet Tribe and member of the 1916 Delegation of the Indian Rights Association.

I have been and continue to be the Nursing Manager with the Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council for 30+ years. As a nurse with Indigenous communities throughout my career, I understand the critical connection between mental and physical health. I also understand that Nuu-chah-nulth-aht are grounded in the belief of Klee-muk-stee (our life spirit), our capacity to heal from within and to acknowledge the role of support from our communities, elders and ancestors. Nursing services can only go so far if mental health issues are not prioritized. Individuals, families, and entire communities suffer from disconnection and insecurity in the absence of language, traditional teachings, relationship to self, others and our traditional territories. Our people and communities will remain unhealthy if they do not have the best opportunities and support to confront and voice the trauma that has seriously harmed themselves and their Nations.

Nurses are trusted and respected in the communities and are frequently approached by members wanting help with anxiety, depression, and addictions. As nurses, we witness repeatedly that without support to deal with the trauma, chronic conditions (diabetes, heart disease, obesity, depression, addiction, etc.) continue to worsen. I often say that a nurse can talk “till she is blue in the face” about diabetes and the person will hear nothing if the mental health issues are not addressed.

As a nursing group, we follow a Nuu-chah-nulth Nursing Framework based on the values and traditions of the Nations. We uphold a strength based-approach, focus on relational practice, and strive for collaboration with the mental health staff from Nuuchahnulth. However, we continue to see the negative effects of trauma with poor health statistics. I support the need to do something new and revolutionary and I am so ready to facilitate the potential that Roots to Thrive program offers to Indigenous people.

Several years ago, I was given the opportunity with ketamine on an experiential basis. The heart connection to my true nature and capacities was the profound and healing experience that connected me back to myself, family and community.

I am hopeful by becoming a board member with the Roots to Thrive, that the negative trajectory of unhealed trauma and poor outcomes can be turned around, that our membership will take advantage of the program and return to the healthy individuals, families and communities we once were and deserve to be again.

Other Board of Directors

Pam Kryskow


Medical Lead and Organization Steward

Dr. Pamela Kryskow is the medical lead for the Roots To Thrive Program.  She is a founding board member of the Psychedelic Association of Canada and the medical chair of the Vancouver Island University Post Graduate Certificate in Psychedelic Medicine assisted Therapy.  Pam is also a a clinical i...
Andrea Lemp


Board Member

Andrea has been leading health and wellness programs, serving British Columbians in Vancouver, and Vancouver Island for over 30 years. A specialist in Community and Hospital Mental Health and Addictions, Andrea has practised and led in diverse Specialty Hospital and Community settings, including ...
Todd Haspect

M.Ed., RCC

Lead Therapist, Facilitation and Alumni Lead

Todd is a Registered Clinical Counsellor. He entered the field of mental health and substance use as a peer support worker in 1998 and his work since that time, has been focused supporting humans heal impacts of trauma, mental health, substance use challenges.  Todd brings experience in various r...
Deborah is currently a practicing member of the Law Society of British Columbia. She holds a Masters of Law from Osgoode Hall Law School, and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Alberta. Ms. Charrois is the Director of Legal and Labour Relations at the British Columbia Nurses’ Union. She sp...
Deborah Irvine
Deborah’s career has spanned the public, private and non-profit sectors. With 20 years in executive and senior management roles, she has led philanthropic grant-making of more than $27 million annually and fundraised $47 million in annual campaign and government revenue. Involved in strategic pla...


Emmy Manson is a proud Snuneymuxw member dedicated to developing strong leadership and opportunities to live their best life. As an elected Council woman for her Nation Emmy has been a champion of addressing trauma and finding pathways to bring love and joy to her community. Emmy brings a wealth ...
Scott Elliot
Scott is motivated by a deep desire to make transformative change in the lives of people with HIV, mental illness, addiction, poverty and complex medical needs. Scott joined the Dr. Peter AIDS Foundation as Executive Director in 2017 and brings 30+ years in the non-profit sector. He has served as...