Our theme for the 2012-16 National Youth Project is Right to Water. Together, we’ll focus on water issues in Canadian Indigenous communities.
The ELCIC Program Committee for Youth Ministry (PCYM) and the justgeneration.ca Youth Initiative of the Primate’s World Relief and Development Fund (PWRDF) are working as partners on this project.
The factors that contribute to the current state of indigenous communities are complex and require concerted collaboration between our governments and First Nations. In order to have a positive and meaningful impact on this process, we must first foster relationships with First Nation communities. Moreover, we must ensure that the contribution we make empowers indigenous communities to become agents of their own change.
Therefore, the first year of the National Youth Project will focus on education, and on developing relationships with indigenous communities. National leaders will also be building relationships, with an eye to identifying practical ways to respond to this issue. The second year of the project will seek to raise funds for practical responses that address the need for safe water.
In the Anglican Church, several groups have expressed an interest in addressing this issue, and a group has begun to meet to look for practical ways to respond. The National Youth Project will connect with this group and will help include the voice, interest and energy of youth in this movement to address water issues. In the ELCIC, the 2011 National Convention committed the church to renewing relationships between indigenous and non-indigenous peoples. The National Youth Project is an expression of this commitment.