Photo Courtesy: Taylor Chartrand

The Province of BC has announced a new initiative that aims towards a brighter future for Indigenous communities in Northern BC.

The program is known as the “Indigenous Tools for Living workshop” and is being offered to help social-service providers, social workers, and health-care workers gain the skills required to support clients struggling with emotional and intergenerational trauma in their communities.

“By understanding the trauma and negative impacts of colonization on First Nations peoples, people providing social and health-care services will gain the knowledge required to help members of their communities heal,” said Scott Fraser, Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation.

With that, the Province has provided the Northern Society for Domestic Peace with $45,000 to unveil the workshops.

Hazelton, Smithers, and Terrace will all host the sessions in the fall.

Each community will host a five-day workshop led by Elders, local community agencies, and instructors from the Justice Institute of BC. The Elders will lead the service providers in learning how to creatively find ways to support clients who are managing emotional and difficult situations. Each workshop will include 3 days of teachings and 2 days of learning how to apply these tools in a public setting.

After completing the five-day workshops, participants will be able to work with clients in a way that is considerate of past trauma and builds confidence.

“Indigenous Tools for Living helps service providers calm their own nervous systems so they can be instrumental in calming our collective nervous system. We are able to get beside trauma in a kind, curious and transformative way, using Indigenous tools for living,” said Belinda Lacombe, Stopping the Violence Counselor.