Honouring Life Network Blog

Welcome to the HLN Blog! Here you will find postings about news items, positive youth programming across the country and beyond, job postings, resources, websites, scholarships/awards, research funding and other things that we think might be relevant to youth or youth workers visiting our site. If you’re looking for something specific, check out the tags at the end of each post and on the right-hand menu. The HLN blog should be interactive, so please feel free to leave a comment about any of the postings, or to email us if you have an idea for an HLN blog posting.

After School Program Embraces Aboriginal Programming

In this article from Alberta Sweetgrass, Sharon Goulet talks about several different after school programs in Calgary that focus on teaching different elements of Aboriginal culture, from painting and sculpture to ceremonies and teachings with elders.

If you live in Calgary and want to see what programs are available in your area, go to www.calgary.ca/afterschool, select search by "program type" and select "culturally-based programs". You will find a list of all the city's culturally-based after school programs with the location and a brief program description.

Alberta Sweetgrass - April 2010

AfterSchool program embraces Aboriginal programming

By Sharon Goulet

Sweetgrass Writer
CALGARY

A new Calgary-wide initiative for youth, aged 6 to 16, is providing information and access to a variety of quality, supervised and fun after school activities focusing on Aboriginal culture.

Currently, six Aboriginal programs are bing offered in different locations throughout the city through the Calgary AfterSchool program which is avilable free of charge to Aboriginal you between the hours of 3-6 p.m.

Aboriginal Buddies, provided by the YMCA off Calgary, offers opportunities to participate in activities that promote Aboriginal culture, heritage and traditions...

Click here to read the rest of the article.

Surviving and thriving: What works to make teens stronger, more resilient

Castlemont Business and Information Technology School in East Oakland has a drop-out rate of 1 in 2 students, but they are trying to improve students' options and outcomes by promoting and teaching resilience skills.

By Beatrice Motamedi
Oakland Tribune correspondent

It's third period at Castlemont Business and Information Technology School in East Oakland. A visitor begins a discussion about poverty, bad food and crime. Tough times? Tough streets? These high school students aren't stressing.

In this class, the vibe is to thrive: At a school where the dropout rate is one in two, most are ready to graduate. Gary Williams Jr., senior class president, has an athletic scholarship to the University of San Francisco.

"Trying to get good grades, play basketball and get ready for college can be really stressful," he says. "I handle my stress by working out or going to play basketball."

Continue reading article...

The signs of suicide: It's time to talk, now

Being a teenager can be rough - relationships, hormones, parties, school - there are lots of things to feel stressed or even depressed about. But how do we know if a friend or family member is severely depressed and maybe even thinking about suicide? James Thomas thought his sister's depression was just a result of normal teenage stuff, but she committed suicide a year after highschool. For the last 8 months James has been working with Annmarie Nicholson from the Royal Ottawa Health Care Group to help other people recognize suicide risk and learn how to talk about it. This article from the Brockville Recorder & Times tells James' sister's story and what he has been doing to try and prevent other people from losing their loved ones.

The signs of suicide: It's time to talk, now

By Megan Burke , STAFF WRITER

The Brockville Recorder & Times

"Back in 2005, my family was devastated by the death of my younger sister. She was 18."
James Thomas, with microphone in hand Wednesday night at Brockville Collegiate, began to tell the story about his younger sister Chantal Thomas. The girl he thought had everything going for her. The girl who did well in school, was athletic and was popular.
The story of the girl Chantal, whom Thomas said could still be with us today if we had known more about mental health issues back then.
On Friday July 8, 2005, Chantal took her own life.
After his sister's death, Thomas began to uncover clues to help him figure out what led his sister down the path of suicide..."

Read complete article here

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Youth Employment Centre opens in Whitehorse

Whitehorse—Yukon youth will have a new resource to help them discover their career options, Education Minister Patrick Rouble and Skookum Jim Friendship Centre President Nelson Lepine announced today.

“The Department of Education is proud to partner with Skookum Jim Friendship Centre to help youth across Yukon identify the right career choice, and realize their full potential,” Rouble said. “This three-year pilot program will open doors through education and awareness.”

The Youth Employment Centre, located in the Skookum Jim Friendship Centre, will provide employment services such as career planning, counselling, work placements and mentorships for youth aged 16 to 30. The centre will also co-ordinate with community partners to offer training in life skills, resume writing, job search and interviewing skills.

“Together with our partners, we will offer youth an opportunity to pursue the career of their dreams,” Lepine said. “To our communities, we offer a growing, vibrant and untapped workforce made up of Yukon youth—youth who will have the opportunity to show our communities that they can be successful when provided the tools and support to pursue their dreams.”

A key component of this project is outreach. Career counsellors will actively seek out youth to talk with them about career plans and life skills training. In addition to providing services in Whitehorse, the centre has a mobile component to serve communities across Yukon. There will also be subsidies available for employers matched with youth who are seeking to gain on-the-job experience.

The Education department is providing $300,000 per year for three years; $100,000 from the Canada-Yukon Labour Market Agreement and $200,000 from the department’s Youth at Risk fund. The Canada-Yukon Labour Market Development Agreement provides funding to support people who are often excluded from the labour force, including First Nation people, older workers, youth, social assistance recipients and people with disabilities.

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Contact:

Emily Younker
Cabinet Communications
867-633-7961
emily.younker@gov.yk.ca.

Michele Royle
Communications, Education
867-393-7102
michele.royle@gov.yk.ca.

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Do It For Daron (D.I.F.D) Youth Mental Health Awareness Night

OTTAWA - Luke Richardson, the Royal Ottawa Foundation for Mental Health, the Sens Foundation and the Ottawa Senators announced today the creation of awareness and fundraising initiatives designed to inspire conversations about youth mental health.

In November 2010, Richardson’s daughter, Daron, 14, took her own life.

“We lost a beautiful daughter and sister,” said Luke Richardson, on behalf of his wife, Stephanie and 16-year-old daughter Morgan. “Daron was also a dear friend and teammate to many. She is sorely missed by all of us.”

“At that very tragic time in November we made the decision to speak publicly about suicide because we wanted to make a difference in the lives of others. We wanted to do what was best for Morgan, for the three of us to understand, to remember Daron and move forward.” added Richardson.

Read more...