This event takes place on the unceded and ancestral lands of the S'olh Temexw (Stó:lō) peoples.
As we work to take of each other while COVID-19 is impacting our communities, we have decided to cancel this event as a precaution, and following advice to keep social distance at this time. The best place to get accurate information about COVID-19 in British Columbia is the BCCDC at http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19.
First Directions is a free program for Indigenous youth in British Columbia.
At First Directions, we bring Indigenous youth together from across the province to develop short videos on topics youth choose related to Indigenous youth health and wellness. During First Directions, a group of 15-20 Indigenous youth will:
- Travel to a shared accommodation retreat centre in Langley, BC, supervised by the Yúusnewas staff team
- Receive training on HIV, sexual health, harm reduction, and how colonization has affected our health—and what we can do about it
- Learn how to create a video, including how to use film equipment, create a storyboard, and edit their work
- Working in small groups, develop a film on a topic of their choice related to Indigenous youth health and wellness
After First Directions, Indigenous youth will receive a copy of their final video in the mail or by pick up at the YouthCO Office.
YouthCO will cover travel costs to and from the workshop as well as meals and accommodations during the training to participants whose applications are accepted. We will work with families and communities to ensure safe transportation for all youth.
As Indigenous youth we are talking about issues that affect our people so that we can share information with our friends and relatives about taking care of our bodies. With colonization and residential schools, a lot of our ancestral ways of taking care of ourselves were lost. We are determined to empower young Indigenous leaders to reclaim our bodies and teachings.
So, what is "Indigenous youth health & wellness"?
Indigenous youth health and wellness can look like a lot of things, some we may have not even thought about before now:
- Learning about our bodies and identities, free of shame
- Considering the emotional, spiritual, mental and physical aspects of taking care of our bodies and sexuality
- Being comfortable with who we are
- Having the information and tools to make decisions that are right for us
- The right to access birth control, sexual health, and harm reduction supplies that suits our needs and lives
- And so much more!
*Applications are now closed - all spots at First Directions 2020 have been filled*.
How to apply
Applications will be accepted until the program is full! Please apply as soon as possible to ensure your participation!
Fill out the application form (pages 2, 3, 4 & 5)
If you are under 18 years old, you will need permission to participate from your caregiver, whether that is a family member or a social worker.
Complete photo/video release so we can show your videos to various audiences (page 7). For youth under 18, your caregiver, parent, guardian, or social worker will need to complete this form.
Give your application to the YouthCO team by mail, dropping off in person, or by email on or before February 21, 2020! Applications will be accepted until the program is full! Please apply as soon as possible to ensure your participation!