Why Become a Member?

As a member, you get access to the various tools and support mechanisms put in place by the Atlantic Node to develop and promote intervention research in addiction.

Research Funding

The Research Development Program supports node members in an increasingly competitive research grant landscape. An envelope of $10,000 to $15,000 from CRISM-Atlantic Node funds is available each year for emerging and promising projects.

Partnered Research Funding Opportunities

CRISM Atlantic members can take advantage of the node’s partnerships with other provincial and national networks to provide funding towards project and protocol development in research areas that are strongly correlated with interventions in the field of addiction.

Access to Evidence-Based Practice Guidelines

CRISM has developed guidelines for Opiod Use Disorders, Injectable OAT,  Lower Risk Cannabis Use, and Alcohol Use Disorder. 

Training Opportunities

CRISM members, particularly undergraduate and graduate students, can identify active researchers and practitioners who may be able to offer training in the form of research assistantships or other practical experiences. These opportunities can become career-defining experiences that can help young scholars and others develop the skills and relationships needed to advance in their profession.

Participation in Node Governance

Governance of the Atlantic node includes Advisory Councils that ensure that work is designed, conducted and shared in a way that considers PWLLE’s and Indigenous People’s perspectives and needs through the lens of sex and gender. Node members may participate in these Councils as well as Working Groups that guide the Node’s research activities. 

Community and Mentoring Opportunities

Node members represent interests from many different perspectives – academic research, clinical practice, community engagement, public policy, health care organizations, and others. Membership in the node ensures continuous communication and awareness of opportunities to connect with those with similar or complementary interests and skills.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • CRISM is funded by the Canadian Institutes in Health Research (CIHR), and falls under purview of the Institute of Neuroscience, Mental Health, and Addictions (INMHA).
  • The Canadian Research Initiative in Substance Misuse (CRISM) is a national research-to-practice network of clinicians, researchers, practitioners, people with lived and living expertise, knowledge users, and policy makers involved in conducting translational research to improve, discover and expand psychosocial, environmental, and biological/pharmaceutical substance use interventions and practices.
  • The network originally consisted of four nodes: British Columbia, Prairies, Ontario and Quebec-Atlantic. In recognition of the unique regional exposures and demands in SU within Atlantic Canadian communities, CIHR funded an additional fifth node, the Atlantic Node, aimed at drawing appropriate regional representation and indigenous leaders to identify, inform, and support inter- and multi-disciplinary research and knowledge translation to improve substance use interventions and practices.
  • By providing evidence to enhance prevention, harm reduction, treatment and recovery services in substance use to decision makers and service providers, CRISM actively supports the improvement in the quality of care and quality of life for Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians living with substance use problems.

If you are interested in staying connected with CRISM, it is as easy as signing up as a member (link at the bottom of the page). In doing so, you can expect to receive announcements and knowledge products (e.g., Newsletters, Fact sheets, etc.) on the network’s progress, projects, and outputs, including invitations to online and in-person events

If you are interested in getting involved further, there are a variety of ways to engage with us!

  • Research Participation: Research is multi-dimensional and comes with many levels of involvement. From proposing research of interest in your community or organization(s) to participating in review committees/panels, being a CRISM member grants you access to a network of professionals and collaborators with a myriad of engagement opportunities.
  • Research Development Program (RDP): CRISM directly supports node members in an increasingly competitive research grant landscape. Research grants of $10,000 to $15,000 from CRISM-Atlantic Node funds are available, through an annual call for proposals, for emerging and promising projects.  These projects support the development and implementation of protocols that are relevant, innovative, and have the potential to accelerate the transfer to practice of scientific knowledge in intervention and management of substance use.
  • Demonstration Projects: The CRISM Atlantic node is funding Demonstration Projects that will showcase the innovative inter- and intra-disciplinary research addressing substance use knowledge gaps and issues in Atlantic Canadian priority populations.
  • Training Opportunities: CRISM members, particularly undergraduate and graduate students, can identify active researchers and practitioners who may be able to offer training in the form of research assistantships or other practical experiences. These opportunities can become career-defining experiences that can help young scholars and others develop the skills and relationships needed to advance in their profession. Check out some of our early career researchers here and here.
  • Community Engagement: CRISM actively brings together stakeholders, knowledge users, Indigenous communities (see below), and other substance use experts and services to identify and inform priority populations and needs. From community-based initiatives in harm reduction and treatment to research groups in the field of substance use and clinical care, we facilitate and create opportunities for networking (check out our list of partners here!)
  • Advisory Councils & Working Groups: There are always exciting projects at CRISM! The Atlantic Node is informed on priority needs (people with living and lived experiences, Indigenous peoples, and sex/gender perspectives) through Advisory Councils, and carries out research via Working Groups across identified knowledge gaps and themes (youth substance use, concurrent disorders, and rural access & telehealth). They are made up of members like you - click here to get involved!
  • Member at large: You can determine how involved you can be! CRISM actively partakes in policy briefs and other special initiatives geared toward advancing the quality of care and interventions for people who use substances. By staying engaged, you can find the opportunities that you are passionate about!

• No! We are a broad network of institutions, individuals, community organizations and initiatives, and we recognize that expertise within the scope of substance use comes in many ways. We welcome you to tell us about yourself, what you are interested in and your experiences; together we can find meaningful engagement to better assist our communities.

We strive for excellence in equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility. These tenets are fundamental in substance use, mental health, and addictions research. To ensure comprehensive outcomes, CRISM actively invites and collaborates with youth, people with lived and living experience, including Atlantic Indigenous, Black, and other BIPOC communities, considers sex and gender perspectives (including the diverse needs of LGBTQ2IA+ communities), embraces neurodiversity, and meaningfully engages researchers, academics, and other healthcare professionals. Through fostering unity in a professional community, research led by CRISM members contributes to more tailored interventions, enhances existing treatments and therapies, reduces health disparities, and fosters a culturally responsive approach in addressing substance use, mental health, and addictions in urban and rural Atlantic Canadian communities.

  • CRISM acknowledges the historical harms that have arisen from anti-Indigenous systemic policies developed and enacted by the Government of Canada. Specifically, the  legacy of residential schools and inter-generational damages incurred through such policies, including harmful research done to and on Indigenous peoples in the name of science. To this end, CRISM Atlantic recognizes the disproportionate harms experienced by Indigenous peoples in the access and delivery of substance use interventions and services. As such, the Atlantic Node is committed to addressing and bridging the gaps by supporting safe and ethical spaces for dialogue in research while collectively working towards meeting the Truth and Reconciliation Committee’s Calls to Action in Health.
  • In all research activities involving Indigenous communities, CRISM Atlantic adheres to ethical guidelines and principles. We ensure that Ownership, Control, Access, and Possession (OCAP) is clearly defined, and researchers are trained in the responsibilities outlined in the Tri-Council Policy Statement on Ethical Research Involving Humans. CRISM ensures that proper informed consent is obtained, privacy and confidentiality are protected, and research protocols are respectful and culturally appropriate by prioritizing input from Elders and Knowledge Carriers. CRISM Atlantic engages with the values of the 7 Sacred Teachings, the 7th Generation Guiding Principle, and Walking Softly on the Earth. We recognize that achieving these goals requires the application of the two-Eyed Seeing Approach, Piloiangitasi Teachings, and considerations for M’sit Nogema, which means "All my Relations."

Through participatory engagement, Indigenous communities can stay connected to, network with, and lead projects with the broader substance use research community. In doing so, Indigenous voices can provide input to guide and inform substance use research that recognizes specific community needs, and Indigenous ways of knowing and doing.


  • The CRISM Quebec-Atlantic Research Development Program funded several projects which are on-going at this time.
    Developing an Innu First Nations evaluation framework for implementing a community wide FASD prevention strategy in two communities;
  • Exploration of therapies for opioid use problems in a First Nation in Nova Scotia;
  • Co-constructing a care trajectory, education, and telehealth pathway to support improvement of accessibility and the quality of outpatient addiction medicine services for Indigenous clients (northern (QC) Indigenous community and Le Centre Hospitalier de l’Universite de Montreal (CHUM)

There are several on-going CIHR funded projects:

  • An exploratory project to examine barriers to SUD treatment and recovery historically faced by rural Indigenous communities and the impact of the pandemic;
  • the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on youth substance use problems and services: Knowledge synthesis with Indigenous Nations and organizations;
  • Identifying effective interventions to address social issues and disparities faced by Indigenous individuals with substance use problems in response to the pandemic

Funded by Indigenous Services Canada and in partnership with the CHUM Addiction Medicine Services:

  • Evaluation of the Managed Alcohol Program (MAP), a clinical internal pilot program of Projects autochtones de Quebec (PAQ)
  • Representative Publications:
    Commentary on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on opioid use disorder treatment among Indigenous communities in the United States and Canada. J Subst Abuse Treat, 121, 108165. doi:10.1016/j.jsat.2020.108165 (Wendt, D. C., Marsan, S., Parker, D., Lizzy, K. E., Roper, J., Mushquash, C., et al. (2021).)
  • Publication led by an Indigenous Graduate student, Tara White in collaboration with members of the IWG, including a several Indigenous students - Trauma-informed Approaches to Substance Use Interventions with Indigenous Peoples: A Scoping Review, Journal of Psychoactive Drugs, To link to this article: https://doi.org/10.1080/02791072.2021.1992047 (T. White., et al (2021)).


Truth and reconciliation are an iterative practice. To effectively address the Calls to Action in health number 18-24, CRISM Atlantic is committed to implementing the following efforts across our Node:
Collaborative Partnerships: Forge partnerships with Indigenous communities, organizations, and individuals to ensure a collaborative and culturally sensitive approach. Engage in ongoing dialogue and consultation to understand community needs and priorities.

Culturally Relevant Research: Conduct research that is grounded in Indigenous knowledge systems and respects the cultural, spiritual, and historical contexts of Indigenous communities. This includes but is not exclusive to integrating Indigenous knowledges in research design and implementation.

Capacity Building: Support capacity-building initiatives for Indigenous researchers and community members. Offer training, mentorship, and resources to empower Indigenous individuals to actively participate in research activities and lead their initiatives.

Community-Based Research: Prioritize community-based research methodologies that involve meaningful engagement and participation of Indigenous communities. Involve community members in all stages of the research process, including identifying research questions, data collection, analysis, and dissemination.

Holistic Approach: Adopt a holistic approach to substance use, mental health, and addictions research that acknowledges the interconnectedness of physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being. Consider the broader determinants of health, such as colonialism, social, economic, historical factors, and race-based policies.

Trauma-Informed Care: Recognize and address the intergenerational trauma and the on-going experiences by Indigenous communities because of colonization and residential schools. Ensure that research practices and interventions are trauma-informed, promoting healing and resilience.

Knowledge Translation and Exchange: Develop strategies to effectively communicate research findings to Indigenous communities and relevant stakeholders. Translate research findings into accessible formats, including Indigenous languages, and actively engage in knowledge exchange activities, such as workshops, conferences, and community presentations.

Policy and Advocacy: Advocate for the integration of research evidence into policies and programs that address substance use, mental health, and addictions in Indigenous communities. Collaborate with policymakers to develop culturally appropriate policies that align with the Calls to Action.

Ethical Considerations: Adhere to ethical guidelines and principles in all research activities involving Indigenous communities including OCAP Principles to ensure Ownership, Control, Access, and Possession is clearly defined in the research questions. Ensures that the researcher is trained in the responsibilities of Tri-Policy Statement on Ethical Research Involving Humans Obtain by proper informed consent, protect privacy and confidentiality, and ensure research protocols are respectful and culturally appropriate. Ensures that unique ethical considerations of the engaging community will be respected, and unspoken rules of conduct will be a learning process inclusive of Elders and Knowledge Carriers. Engaging with the values of the 7 Sacred Teachings, the 7th Generation Guiding Principle, and Walking Softly on the Earth. Realizing that this can only be achieved through ethical considerations of the 2-Eyed Seeing Approach, Piloiangitasi Teachings, and considerations for M’sit Nogema “All my Relations.”

Long-Term Commitment: Recognize that addressing the Calls to Action requires sustained, long-term commitment to Indigenous health priorities. Continuously using a process of decolonization to evaluate and adapt research initiatives based on community input and their evolving needs. Foster long-lasting relationships and partnerships with Indigenous communities to ensure meaningful impact that is on-going, consistent, reciprocal, balanced, respectful and necessary.

CRISM uses many strategies to communicate and collaborate with the broader substance use community:

  1. Participatory engagement: CRISM actively involves members, including researchers and trainees, and seeks their input and feedback, and ensures their voices are heard through community forums, focus groups, town hall meetings, or online platforms where individuals can share their experiences and perspectives.
  2. Newsletters: CRISM provides updates on research findings, policy developments, upcoming events, and resources related to substance use research. We often feature stories, interviews with experts, and research tips for addressing substance use issues.
  3. Knowledge products: CRISM actively develops knowledge products such as fact sheets, guidelines, and other informational materials to help disseminate evidence-based information to the broader substance use community.
  4. Publications in scholarly journals: 200+ CRISM members actively publish research findings and insights in reputable scholarly journals to help academic exchange and dissemination of knowledge within the substance use community. By sharing research outcomes, best practices, and innovative interventions, knowledge users and professionals can contribute to the broader understanding of substance use and its treatment.
  5. Inter-professional gatherings and conferences (symposia): CRISM actively organizes and participates in inter-professional gatherings and conferences, such as symposia, to promote collaboration and knowledge sharing not just within the substance use community, but local Indigenous and non-indigenous Atlantic Canadian communities. These events provide opportunities for researchers, healthcare providers, policymakers, and community members to come together, share their expertise, and discuss current challenges and potential solutions. Such gatherings facilitate networking, interdisciplinary collaboration, and the exchange of ideas.
  6. Online Knowledge Dissemination: CRISM National and CRISM-Atlantic websites and social media platforms disseminate the latest research findings from the network and provide opportunities for knowledge sharing and collaboration.

Sign up as a member! It is free and comes with no obligations. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click “Become a Member”

*  Indigenous refers to Inuit, First Nations, Metis and all first peoples across Turtle Island.