In 2013/14, the Centre for Indigenous Environmental Resources hosted an Aboriginal Youth Water Leadership Program. Sixteen youth representing Canada’s four major water-sheds were recruited and selected to take part in this inaugural program:
• Pacific Watershed— Lower Similkameen Indian Band
• Atlantic Watershed—Beausoleil Island First Nation
• Hudson Bay Water Shed—Shoal Lake First Nation
• Arctic Watershed- Fort Smith
An eight month learning odyssey took the youth and their chaperones across the country. The group took part in week-long workshops at each watershed’s representative community. Each workshop was designed to build capacity in Aboriginal youth within water management.
The different youth groups were asked to create a water project in their home community. The youth from Fort Smith collaborated with GNWT-ENR Public Education, Aurora College (Thebacha) and the Stream of Dreams Mural Project and went into the local elementary school to educate over 200 kids about the importance of water!