William W. Creighton Youth Services uses the Medicine Wheel as our guide to support a holistic approach to healing and wellness.
The agency recognizes the great diversity that exists both across and within Indigenous communities that we serve and we attempt to reflect this in our work with youth and their families. Reflecting this diversity involves drawing upon the knowledge and teachings that lie within individual youth and their families as well as the greater community. This is done through inviting families into our facilities to share some of their teachings or family recipes, drawing upon community resource people through involvement in our Cultural Committee, and through an openness for community input and partnership. William W. Creighton Youth Services also believes that ongoing staff development is important in the acknowledgement and understanding of both historic and current issues facing the Indigenous people of Canada.
As part of our focus, listed below is our agency’s First Nations Policy
William W. Creighton Youth Services continues to work to acknowledge and understand full the impacts of Colonialism on the First Nations peoples of Canada. The agency further recognizes the subsequent intergenerational and ongoing trauma that Colonialism causes First Nations people. The provision of service to First Nations youth must take this into account.The core values and beliefs of First Nations youth remain different from those of the dominant Settler society.
The challenge for many aboriginal youth is the discovery of what will promote a healthy life in their journey forward. On the one hand, the youth needs someone who will provide encouragement and teaching in a manner that allows for constructive challenge to currently held values, beliefs and thinking patterns that may promote criminal behaviour. On the other hand, the youth needs the support that comes from an understanding of their unique heritage and the strength it can provide.
The following principles guide the delivery of service to First Nations young persons and their families:
- First Nations young persons will be supported in development of a personal identity that incorporates the richness and strength of aboriginal culture; if resources are not available internally, the agency will find them in the local community.
- Programs that are offered will be presented in a manner that recognizes aboriginal values, the tradition of oral teachings, and the applicability of cognitive behavioural interventions (Reference Cognitive Manual Part IV).
- William W. Creighton Youth Services will offer opportunities for staff training that provides education on Colonialism and its impacts on the relationship between the Settler populations and First Nations to assist in the work with youth.
- Interpretation services will be sought to assist staff, youth, and family, as necessary.
- First Nations youth will be encouraged to participate in traditional ceremonies and practices and will be offered the opportunity to smudge as they wish within the facility. Staff are encouraged to participate.