June 22 | Webinar Recap: Indigenous Approaches to Youth Program Evaluation

The culturally responsive evaluation of Indigenous youth programs in all their diversity is key to the ongoing project of Aboriginal healing and self-determination. Culturally responsive research and evaluation has the potential to gather reliable evidence that both informs and shapes those efforts.

On June 22, we hosted a webinar discussing the importance of incorporating culturally appropriate and responsive elements of Indigenous worldview into evaluating Aboriginal youth programs. We explored the principles of Indigenous program evaluation, how to develop an appropriate framework, and how to gain insight into how well the program is achieving its intended outcomes.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

1. Webinar Slides
This is the slide deck for this webinar.

2. A Holistic Study of the Biwaase’aa Program on Participating Students in Thunder Bay
The purpose of this study is to examine the impact of the four major focuses of Biwaase’aa: Cultural Activities = Spiritual, Structured Activities = Emotional, Academic Activities = Mental, Food Security Activities = Physical through the experiences of grade six Aboriginal students enrolled in Biwaase’aa for a minimum of two to a maximum of three years.

3. Engaging and Empowering Aboriginal Youth: A Toolkit for Service Providers
The purpose of this toolkit is to provide front-line service providers, facilitators, educators, community partners and researchers a guide for making programs more appropriate and relevant for Aboriginal youth. This toolkit will be helpful to anyone who is striving to foster violence prevention, healing and empowerment for Aboriginal youth and communities.

4. A Strategy for Change: Supporting Teachers and Improving First Nations, Métis, and Inuit School Success in Provincially Funded Northwestern Ontario Schools.
This paper proposes a new approach to First Nation, Métis, and Inuit school success called the Biwaase’aa/Maamaawisiiwin Education Innovation.

The views expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Northern Policy Institute, its Board of Directors or its supporters. Quotation with appropriate credit is permissible.

Dr. John Akweniiostha Hodson
Director of the Maamaawisiiwin Education Research Centre

John is of Mohawk descent, turtle clan, and has worked in Aboriginal education at the primary, secondary, post-secondary level in Canada as well as internationally for over 20 years, publishing widely on the subject.

As the Director of Maamaawisiiwin, Dr. Hodson provides leadership to this independent, non-aligned centre of inquiry providing culturally appropriate teacher development programming and research services to both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal communities.

Gabrielle Fayant
Co-founder of Assembly of Seven Generation (AG7) and Program Manager of ReachUp! North in partnership with Digital Opportunity Trust

Gabrielle has worked for a number of National Aboriginal Organizations such as the National Association of Friendship Centres, Native Women’s Association of Canada, and the Aboriginal Healing Foundation. She has experience on a number of local, regional, and national advisory committees and councils, such as the Canadian Commission of UNESCO’s Youth Advisory Group, Ottawa Youth Engagement Committee, and Walking With Our Sisters Ottawa Youth Committee.

Gabrielle also serves as a board member for the Odawa Native Friendship Centre, and she sings with a female drum group called Spirit Flowers and as backup for a men’s drum group called O-Town Boyz.

Karli Brotchie
Northwestern ON Hub Manager, YouthREX

For the past decade Karli has worked in the social justice field, in a variety of positions in varied capacities. She has worked directly with youth as an instructor at Confederation College as well as a teaching assistant at Lakehead University. While working at a provincial Indigenous women’s organization, Karli was involved in a number of youth entered research projects, including determining the educational and employment needs of Indigenous youth, and the role that the education system has in addressing the issue of violence against Indigenous women.

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