COMPENDIUM OF PROMISING PRACTICES TO REDUCE VIOLENCE AND INCREASE SAFETY OF ABORIGINAL WOMEN IN CANADA – COMPENDIUM ANNEX: DETAILED PRACTICE DESCRIPTIONS
INTERACTIONS WITHIN COMMUNITIES
Healthy Relationships: Children and Youth
- Program name:
Youth and Family Services Program
Inuvik Justice Committee
Inuvik, Northwest Territories
- Target Group:
Boys and girls ages 6-18, and families.
- Contact Name:
Alana Mero, Chair or Sarah Smith, Victim Services Coordinator.
The Youth and Family Support Program began in 2010. The community is home to Gwich'in First Nations people, Inuvialuit people and non-Aboriginal people. The Dempster Highway connects Inuvik to Whitehorse, Yukon. However, most of the travel to and from Inuvik is by air. The primary languages are English, Inuvialuktun and Gwich'in.
- Goals & Objectives:
To provide children, youth and families with the activities, experiences, skills and personal connections to increase their health and safety, and reinforce their cultural identity; and to help children, youth and families avoid involvement with the criminal justice system, reducing the potential for violence and increasing community safety.
- Traditional/Indigenous ways:
The program promotes traditional Gwich'in and Inuvialuit land skills that include traditional spiritual ceremonies, Elder counselling and peer support.
- Components of program:
The program has developed a weekend "Take a Kid Trapping" program offered at Elders' camps which offers at risk youth an opportunity to learn the skills necessary to become successful trappers. The program runs public education workshops on issues of drug and alcohol abuse. There are also parenting support groups. The program offers support to victims, mediation of restorative justice and the coordination of bringing in other professional to run workshops in the community.
- Services/How they work:
Services are provided on site at the facility and off site on the land.
Funding is provided by the Department of Public Safety Canada's Crime Prevention Action Fund.
Relationships and Stakeholders
- Involvement of Target Groups:
The Gwich'in First Nation; the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation; the Department of Justice Canada; NWT Department of Justice; and the NWT Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
- Other relationships:
The program also coordinates their work with other non-government organizations in Inuvik such as the Inuvik Youth Centre.
Details of Program Evaluation
No evaluation has been completed.
- Highlights of Evaluation Findings:
- Measures of Success:
Success is measured by participation levels in program activities. Success is also measured by decreases in youth and family violence crime levels.
The development of wide support in the community. Elders, families and young people are keen to be involved in this program.
It has been a long and time consuming process to acquire the funding to run the programs listed above. All of these programs are run by only three full time staff and community volunteers.
Things to Know to Replicate
- Replication Advice:
The program is considered replicable. People would need to know how to acquire the level of funding needed for a program like the Youth and Family Support Program. It is important to have the support of local Elders who are able to teach traditional land skills.
Adequate funding, properly trained staff and facility space for the programming would be necessary to ensure the program's success.
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