2015 Recipient Project Descriptions

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

2015 Recipient Project Descriptions

2015 Community Investment Recipient Project Descriptions

Children First Society, Inuvik, NT – Community Play Group

Children First Society’s Community Play Group is an open program for all children 0-6 years of age and their caregivers. It is a weekly program that is held in the Children First Gym. It gives young children an opportunity to come out to socialize, learn and play in a safe environment. In the Arctic’s environment getting children out to play safely is challenging. Between the winter cold and dark, the summer bugs and intense sun, families appreciate a safe space for their young children to run and play. The Community Play Group is a year round project that allows for active learning and fun no matter what challenges the outside elements bring.

Ecology North, Yellowknife, NT – Ecology Matters

Ecology Matters is an after-school environmental education program that provides opportunities for underrepresented and at-risk youth in Yellowknife, N’dilo and Dettah to participate in a range of active hands-on outdoor activities. Activities include: orienteering, geocaching, animal tracking, winter survival training, bird count hikes and interpretive snowshoeing. The program runs from January to June and encourages learning about the local environment and its ecology, while also promoting personal confidence, leadership, and active and healthy living. The program is built on a partnership between Ecology North and The SideDoor Youth Centre.

Food First Foundation, Pan-territorial – School Food Program Equipment

Breakfast and snack programs in NWT schools feed hundreds of students every day. Teachers staff the program almost entirely before they begin their classroom duties. Food First Foundation will purchase kitchen equipment such as blenders, high volume toasters, and other cooking and serving equipment to facilitate this essential service to northern students. Funding from United Way NWT will allow the teachers to make the best use of their time in the kitchen so they can get back to the classroom.

Food Rescue, Yellowknife, NT – Food Rescue

Food Rescue provides food to organizations that feed the homeless and otherwise nutritionally or socially disadvantaged people through donations of reclaimed food. Food Rescue operates five days per week with the help of 20 volunteers and one paid employee. In 2013/14, Food Rescue received over 174,000 kilograms of food and other products. Of this, 96% or 168,000 kilograms was distributed back to the community. It is estimated that 250 people—children to adults—are impacted on a daily basis by this program. In addition, there are approximately another 300 individuals and families that receive food provided by Food Rescue through hampers.

Fort Smith Ecumenical Group Soup Kitchen and Food Bank, Fort Smith, NT – Food Bank and Soup Kitchen

The Fort Smith Food Bank provides safe and wholesome food for children, elderly and adults who are unable to do so, on a temporary or on-going basis. The Food Bank assists approximately 30 families each week by providing non-perishable foods. Operating 100% on donations and volunteers, the Food Bank serves all members of the Fort Smith community with a focus on the most vulnerable populations of children, elders and adults.

Foster Family Coalition of NWT, Pan-territorial – Camp Connections Kitchen Equipment

Foster Family Coalition is a unified voice dedicated to improving the quality of life for children and youth in care by supporting foster families’ well-being. During the summer, FFC operates Camp Connections, an outdoor adventure territorial camp for approximately 100 at risk children. Camp Connections promotes traditional knowledge and fosters cultural respect. Funding from the United Way NWT will help to upgrade kitchen appliances so healthy nutritional and traditional options can be served.

The Soup Kitchen, Hay River, NT – Soup Kitchen, Food Bank and Food Rescue

The Soup Kitchen is open for three lunch meals per week and provides a food hamper service in a limited capacity. In addition, a food rescue and recycling program takes usable food past its best before date—that is still safe—to include in soup kitchen meals. The Soup Kitchen averages 552 hot lunches per month and 30-36 hampers per week. With the lunch population changing, more moms are coming with their school aged and preschool children. The Soup Kitchen helps roughly 130 adults and 52 children.

Inuvik Homeless Shelter, Inuvik, NT – Homeless Shelter

The Inuvik Homeless Shelter is a refuge for those in need. It is the only means of emergency shelter for single men and women in the Beaufort Delta’s regional centre and can provide temporary housing for up to 25 adults. The Shelter provides its clients with an alcohol and drug free environment and a safe place to live. Currently, the Shelter is only open during the daytime for 4 days a week (in addition to being open every night). On the other days, clients must leave the Shelter at 10:00 am and are not able to return until 6:00 pm, even in the coldest weather. With United Way NWT funding, the Shelter will remain open on additional days to provide a safe place for clients to spend the day, as an alternative to being on the street. This will also allow staff to assist clients in accessing services that are only open during daytime hours.

Inuvik Youth Centre, Inuvik, NT – Youth Drop-In Program

The Inuvik Youth Centre supports Inuvik youth by providing a welcoming and holistic facility to deliver progressive programming that promotes and encourages integrity, accountability, respect, acceptance and responsibility. The Drop-In program is a safe space for youth aged 5-18 years old to hang out, seek support and develop their individual strengths. It is the only free activity for youth to participate in after school and on the weekends. The Drop-In program is an essential service in Inuvik and was accessed over 4,000 times in 2013/14 with numbers increasing every year.

Northern Youth Leadership, Pan-territorial – Northern Youth Gana River Summer Camp

The week-long Northern Youth camp provides 10 girls aged 11-13 from across the NWT the opportunity to explore northern diversity, learn outdoor leadership and traditional skills, and gain self-confidence in a fun, safe, nurturing environment. The Gana River Camp is held at the Gana River Lodge in the Mackenzie Mountains of the Sahtu Region. Campers spend a week hiking, fishing and learning bush skills from skilled leaders and local elders, while making new friends, gaining confidence and having fun.

NWT Breast Health/Cancer Support Group, Pan-territorial – Breast Health and Cancer Support

The NWT Breast Health/Breast Cancer Action Group will support NWT breast cancer patients by producing an updated Breast Surgery booklet. The booklet provides plain language information for newly diagnosed breast cancer patients to help them understand treatment options and gain a sense of control over their cancer journey. The Action Group will also engage NWT women in taking charge of their breast health by revising and distributing its Caring For Yourself plain language breast health booklet. Recent changes in breast cancer screening policies in the NWT and nationally have rendered the original Caring For Yourself booklet obsolete.

NWT Literacy Council, Pan-territorial – Talk to Me

The Talk to Me educational program prompts parents to talk to their children during every day tasks. Talking to infants, toddlers and pre-schoolers helps them to develop language. Children whose parents talk to them have richer vocabularies and get a head start on literacy. Research shows that early childhood development has positive, lifelong benefits. It also enriches family bonds. The useful items such as a t-shirt or bib each have a theme with a set of questions that prompt conversation around getting dressed and meal times. These messages are reinforced by other Literacy Council materials and will be distributed through family literacy providers and/or health centres across the NWT.

Order of St. Lazarus, Pan-territorial – North of 60 Distribution of Caregiver Guides and Palliative Care Blankets

The Order of St. Lazarus Arctic Delegation’s primary focus is on improving palliative and seniors care in northern communities. The Arctic Delegation will distribute copies of the Caregivers Guide to End of Life Care (the Green Book) together with 3-5 blankets for use by palliative care patients and their families to each Nursing Station and Community Health Center in NWT. The Green Book provides practical advice about end of life car to both health professionals and families. The book is available in English, French, and Inuktitut and Inuinnaqtun and will be circulated to each of the 100-community health centres in the appropriate languages.

SideDoor Youth Ministries, Yellowknife, NT – Life Skills and Cooking Program

Side Door Youth Ministries provide every youth, particularly the most vulnerable and at risk, with the support services and resources that help them navigate a very challenging time in their lives. The Drop-In centre is a program where youth aged 13-19 years old can watch movies/TV, play video or board games, play pool, air hockey etc.. Four computers are available to connect with social media, draft a resume, and look for work. During the Drop-In program, life skills and cooking programs are offered. Many youth that come to the program, come hungry. The program has since expanded to provide a daily hot breakfast for youth accessing the emergency shelter; as well as, a bagged-lunch. Attendance ranges from 40-60 youth with higher attendance on the weekends. United Way NWT funding will provide food for one evening per week for 50 weeks.

Special Olympics NWT, Pan-territorial – Special Olympics

Special Olympics NWT is dedicated to enriching the lives of NWT residents with an intellectual disability through sport. The Active Start and FUNdamentals programs allow children to develop fundamental sport skills such as throwing, catching, balancing, and running. These skills are introduced at an individualized pace. For most children with disabilities, these skills are taught elsewhere at a pace beyond their ability to keep up. As a result, they may never get a strong foundation in basic physical activity building blocks and their ability to engage in lifelong physical fitness becomes impaired. These skills development help children in community and school sport programs; as well as, in the regular Special Olympics program that they can join at age 11 years old.

Yellowknife Association for Community Living, Yellowknife, NT – Community Inclusion and YayFusion Young Adult Group

Yellowknife Association for Community Living provides supports and services for both children and adults with intellectual and other disabilities, and their families. The YayFusion social group serves up to a dozen teens with intellectual or cognitive disabilities and their age-group peers. As individuals graduate from the program, they move into the Young Adult Social Group for young adults in their twenties. Young Adults serves up to 15 adults and another 45 are supported in various ways to participate in community activities. While the association is based in Yellowknife, approximately 30% of the total individuals involved are from communities outside Yellowknife but live in the city to access supports and services.

Yellowknife Family Centre, Yellowknife, NT – Monday Madness, Tasty Tuesdays and Parenting Workshops

The Yellowknife Family Centre provides support to families with children aged 0 to 6 years old. Monday Madness is a 14-session science program for toddlers aimed at making learning fun. Tasty Tuesdays teaches families how to cook healthy with kids. Three different parenting workshops are offered throughout the year that runs for five weeks with a maximum of 10 participants. Workshops are offered during the day with childcare provided. This year, an evening workshop will be offered. Over 135 families are served—12 families or 39 participants per session. The programs run yearly from October to June.

Yellowknife Scouts, Yellowknife, NT – Scout House Window and Security Repairs

Yellowknife Scouts has 50 members aged 5-15 years old. Scout House provides an easily accessible outdoor meeting facility for use by Yellowknife Scouts and is also shared with Folk On The Rocks during the summer festival. Beavers, Cubs, Scouts and Venturers use the facility year-round. Scout House was vandalized and requires repairs to: windows, secure wire mesh security screens, doors, drywall and painting. In addition, a rear entrance porch with railings and new steps will be installed making the facility safe and secure. The repairs will secure the building and permit increased use of the building and site for both indoor and outdoor scouting activities such as training, camping, canoeing, ceremonial campfires, cooking and games.

YK Food Bank, Yellowknife, NT – Food Bank

The YK Food Bank provides basic food items to those in need as a supplement to their own means. The Food Bank is currently limited to distributing canned and dried products as they make up the vast majority of donations. The Food Bank would like to be able to purchase perishable foods, such as fruits and vegetables, along with meat to distribute to clients. There are an increasing number of families and children accessing food bank services. Funding from the United Way NWT means that the Food Bank will be able to provide more nutritious food options to more people in need.

YWCA Yellowknife, Yellowknife, NT – YWCA GirlSpace Summer Workshop

GirlSpace promotes values of self-confidence, leadership, and positive self-esteem through programs aimed at girls aged 8 to 13. Building on the unique success of the GirlSpace groups held after school, summer workshops keep girls engaged in the community they’ve created, and enhance the skills they’ve learned during the school year. Eight workshops varying in length from two hours to two days are delivered to 80 participants. Activities include: camping, yoga, canoeing, traditional crafts, and t-shirt making. The workshops extend the GirlSpace mandate of empowering girls ages 8 to 17 to meet the challenges presented by their peers, media and society. The girls learn and grow through focused activity in a tried and tested curriculum. Activities are fun and include volunteering in a variety of roles in the community.

United Way NWT 2015 Community Investment Recipient Project Descriptions.pdf