The Pathways Home project is a comprehensive, culturally based skills development and engagement program designed by NIFCS to engage and empower children and youth through the teachings of Tsmishian and Haisla Cultural Practitioners, Elders and Indigenous Artists.
To provide a continuum of culturally appropriate seasonal programming that enhances self identity, lifelong learning and leadership qualities in children and youth and strengthens their connections to the cultural practices and teachings of their clan and nation.
To offer children and youth culturally based programs that support the transfer of traditional knowledge, and teach skills that create opportunities for children and youth to reconnect with their community and clan.
PROGRAM GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
• Create cultural programming for children and youth
• Strengthen cultural identity
• Offer programming based on Tsimshian and Haisla cultural values
• Impart essential work and job retention skills for youth transitioning to independent living
• Generate Traditional Use Knowledge through active cultural practice
• Create safe environments to grow and learn
• Promote the transfer of traditional skills
• Provide outreach activities to children and youth in the seven Tsimshian communities served by NIFCS
The Pathways Home project offers several di erent programs throughout the year in the seven communities it serves. Specifically designed for children and youth in care, or at risk, these services are provided by NIFCS as well as regular programs offered in urban areas of Prince Rupert and Terrace.
From the classroom to the harvesting grounds, participants take part in seasonal activities and cultural practices in various settings. Participants will also take part in short format, nontraditional work skills training throughout the year.
Activities offered during the Cultural Camp component include: cultural teachings through the Talking Circle, Indigenous Arts, Cultural Protocol, Language Engagement, Cultural Harvesting and Field Trips within the traditional territory of the Tsimshian and Haisla.
Participants will learn how to pick seaweed, smoke salmon, identify and harvest medicinal plants, harvest cedar for weaving, carve masks, and everything in between.
Blending the old with the new, older participants will obtain valuable nontraditional life and job retention skills depending on their areas of interest.
Over the course of four seasons, participants will interact with Cultural Practitioners, Elders and Indigenous Artisans to learn and celebrate the following cultural protocols and practices:
• Regalia Making
• Cedar harvesting & weaving
• Drum Making
• Sing, Drum and Dance
• Participate in Elders’ “Talking Circle” and self- identi cation activities
• Immerse in traditional languages with Elders
• Learn and partake in cultural protocol activities
• Engage in traditional harvesting gathering and preserving
• Take part in cultural eld trips
• Reconnect with clans and home community
The program also teaches nontraditional skills including, but not limited to:
• Basic First Aid
• Food Safety
• Drivers Exam
• Boat Operations SVOP
• Cash Register Training
• Frontline Reception
• Essential life skills
Skills obtained in the project may count as elective credits towards their high school curriculum.
WINTER: SEASON OF TEACHING
Key Teaching: Knowledge and Skills
Key Events: Indigenous Knowledge Building, Indigenous Skills, Cultural Practice, Indigenous Arts, Indigenous Language, Cultural Protocol and nontraditional work skills
SPRING: SEASON OF CULTURAL PRACTICE
Key Teaching: Cultural Practices and Traditional Use Knowledge
Key Events: Cultural Teachings, Indigenous Cultural Practice, Indigenous Skills and Field Trips
SUMMER: SEASON FOR EXPLORING
Key Teaching: Cultural Practice
Key Events: Indigenous Knowledge, Indigenous Skills, Language Enhancement, Cultural Practice and Field Trips
FALL: SEASON FOR LEARNING
Key Teachings: Traditional and nontraditional skills.
Key Events: Nontraditional Skills Development, Indigenous Skills Development, Cultural Protocol and Cultural Practice