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August 2022 Pain BC Newsletter
Engaging people with pain in research
Canada is home to internationally renowned pain researchers and a strong pain research community. However, many knowledge gaps continue. Recognizing this, Health Canada’s Action Plan for Pain in Canada recommends increasing the role of people with pain in co-designing pain research.

In response to this recommendation, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) has awarded a $2.4M grant to Western University and Pain BC for a project titled Partnership for the engagement of patients in pain research (PEPR).

Patient participation in pain research and health policy often excludes people with pain from equity-seeking communities, despite the high rates of chronic disease in these communities. This five-year project aims to address this issue by building and supporting a network of people with pain who are also people of colour, LGBTQ2S people, newcomers, or Indigenous peoples to shape pain research, policy advocacy and practice change.

The project will begin with community consultations, followed by the launch of a participant engagement research hub. The insights from this work will shape the development of tools and guidelines, which will be available to people with lived experience, researchers, clinicians, and policymakers.

This project is co-led by Dr. Fiona Webster, Western University Nursing and Maria Hudspith, Executive Director of Pain BC.

The PEPR website is under construction, and more information about the project and how to participate will be added throughout fall: You can also contact Fiona Webster at
Pain BC programs, resources and updates
Pain BC integrates pain management into overdose prevention
Celebrating the success of pilot program graduates
Graduates of the Street Degree program at the picnic
Over the last two years, Pain BC has worked with the Squamish Helping Hands Society and Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH)'s Street Degree program, in collaboration with Sea to Sky Mental Health and Substance Use Services, VCH, to integrate a multidisciplinary pain program with a training program for peers working at overdose prevention sites and other harm reduction services. The Street Degree program boosts their lived experience with formal training in areas such as overdose response, community resources, managing extreme situations, and now pain management.

Earlier this summer, the Squamish Helping Hands Society held a picnic to honour the graduates of the Street Degree program's latest cycle. The graduates included Donut, a dog who attended sessions with her human. The pilot program was funded by BC's Overdose Emergency Response Centre (OERC) and supported by Pain BC. The Squamish Helping Hands Society is now seeking sustained funding to continue to offer the program in years to come.
Apply to become a Pain Support and Wellness Group facilitator
We are looking for volunteers to co-lead/facilitate groups in BC

Pain Support and Wellness Groups offer an opportunity for people living with persistent pain to meet on a regular basis to learn about self-management as well as receive and provide support, by sharing knowledge, experiences and coping strategies. Groups meet on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month with alternating afternoon and evening sessions.

Pain BC is looking for volunteer facilitators to co-lead/facilitate virtual Pain Support and Wellness Groups across the province. As a volunteer, you will receive thorough training and educational materials from Pain BC, as well as ongoing support from Pain BC staff to facilitate the group in your community.
Our supports for people with pain
LivePlanBe+ logo
Knowledge is power. Learn to manage pain and improve well-being though our library of evidence-based articles on LivePlanBe or start a customized program on LivePlanBe+.
Connect with Pain Support Line staff to talk about your pain, find information on community resources, learn about pain and self-management, and much more.
Join an online group and build a community of support while learning about pain, pain management and coping strategies.
Receive one-on-one phone support and mentorship from a coach who will help you learn about self-management, regaining function and improving your well-being.
Gentle Movement @ Home: Guided movement and relaxation for pain

Gentle Movement @ Home free online videos provide guided movement and relaxation designed to help people with persistent pain learn to feel safe to move again. Topics include breath awareness and regulation, body tension regulation, and movement and relaxation techniques in both seated and standing positions.

The full collection of Gentle Movement @ Home videos are available to view for free via our YouTube channel.
Upcoming Pain BC and partner workshops, webinars and courses for health care providers
Pain Foundations for Allied Health Providers
Pain Foundations for Allied Health Providers is an online course designed for allied health care providers to improve their understanding of chronic pain and how to address the challenges of pain assessment and treatment. This practical, compact course allows learners to develop clinically relevant approaches to chronic pain management and develop a strong grounding in pain science to support further exploration. The course is free for health care providers in BC and offered at a modest cost for providers outside of BC.

Pain Foundations for Primary Care Providers
This practical, compact course allows physicians and nurse practitioners to develop clinically relevant approaches to chronic pain management, including non-pharmacological treatments and prescribing best practices. Learners will develop a strong grounding in pain science to support further exploration. The course is free for primary care providers in BC and offered at a modest cost for physicians and nurse practitioners outside of BC.

Gentle Movement and Relaxation course
This free, online course will equip physiotherapists and other therapeutic movement professionals with practical knowledge and teaching resources to lead their own movement and relaxation programs for people living with chronic pain.

The Gentle Movement and Relaxation course is currently available to BC health care providers only.

Pain BC relies on the generosity of our donors to deliver our programs and services. We gratefully acknowledge that many of our programs and services receive partial financial support from the Province of British Columbia, including Coaching for Health, the Pain Support Line, Pain Support and Wellness Groups, our chronic pain management workshops for health care providers, Gentle Movement and Relaxation course, LivePlanBe, Making Sense of Pain, Pain Foundations, and the Pain Waves podcast.
Other programs, opportunities and resources
TMJ: Tips and tricks for a healthy jaw
Virtual event on September 13, 2022

Join Cassie + Friends on September 13, 2022 to learn more about how arthritis and other rheumatic diseases can affect the jaw. Pediatric rheumatologist Dr. Marinka Twilt and pediatric physiotherapist Julia Brooks will discuss the signs and symptoms of jaw problems, at-home jaw exercises, and some tips and tricks for a healthy jaw. Youth speaker Emily Bessey will also share some first-hand experiences of navigating jaw pain.
Free art therapy from Family Caregivers of BC
Held in person in Victoria throughout the fall

The process of making art can be a valuable tool for managing stress, helping in the healing process, fostering self-worth, and connecting with others. Family Caregivers of BC is hosting a monthly art therapy group with caregivers this fall. Sessions will take place on September 14, October 12, November 9, and December 14 from 1:30-3:00 PM in Victoria. It offers different kinds of art media, promoting mindfulness and relaxation. To put your name on the waiting list, email or call 1-877-520-3267.
Patient Engagement Research Ambassador opportunity
Deadline for expression of interest: September 2, 2022

The CIHR Institute of Musculoskeletal Health and Arthritis (IMHA) is seeking members for its Patient Engagement Research Ambassadors (PERA) group. PERA members inform patient priorities in research. IMHA is seeking to build a more inclusive representation of patients and caregivers who live with, or represent conditions, related to bones, joints, muscles, connective tissue, skin and teeth. They are looking for members who reflect the intersectionality of the community. To apply, submit a brief expression of interest by September 2, 2022.
SaskPain logo
Podcast episode on somatic therapies for pain
Newest podcast episode of 'Your Partners in Pain' from SaskPain

Chronic pain social worker Jennifer King works with a multidisciplinary team of health care professionals at the MaciOPS/Chronic Pain Clinic at the University of Saskatchewan. In this podcast episode hosted by SaskPain, Jennifer touches on the importance of learning about the nervous system, mind strategies she uses in her practice, and somatic therapies. She also provides an overview of what a meeting with a social worker for pain management may look like.
Research and engagement opportunities
Canadian Society of Intestinal Research and MedAccess BC logos
Survey: Access to medications

Are you an adult who takes prescription medication? MedAccess BC, in collaboration with the GI Society, has developed a survey to understand your opinions regarding current access to medicines in various health care settings (e.g., local pharmacy, hospital) and advocate for system-wide improvements in care and treatment. Your feedback will be used to shape future programming and to inform community members, health care professionals, and health policy decision-makers. The survey will take approximately 5-8 minutes to complete.
University of Calgary logo
Study: Chronic pain in serving military members, veterans and their children

Chronic pain can run in families. However, many children manage to avoid intergenerational pain. The Chronic Pain Centre of Excellence for Canadian Veterans and the University of Calgary want to better understand how pain can be transferred to children from their parents, and which factors affect this in a veteran/military population. Veterans, serving members and their children will be sent an online survey which will take 30-45 minutes to complete. Participants will each receive a $15 gift card. To learn more, contact the research team at or 403-210-7846.
In the news
How I navigated the health care system: Craig Godsoe, Pain BC donor and person with pain
In our latest blog post, Pain BC donor Craig Godsoe shares his experience of navigating the health care system and interacting with his long-term disability provider.
You don't need to disclose your illness to be supported at work
The author of this article shares a positive experience she had in grad school seeking accommodations without disclosing her health conditions.
If the spoon theory doesn't work for you, try the arcade theory
The author of this article explains the arcade theory of chronic illness: the experience to being a kid at an arcade with limited change to spend on different games.
CBC interview with Dr. Christine Chambers on helping children with vaccination fear
Parents of young children will soon be able to book appointments for the COVID-19 vaccine. Children's pain expert Dr. Christine Chambers offers tips for making the experience as smooth as possible.
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