How We Do It
Pathways works with children, youth and families whose primary relationships and connections with caregivers and their communities have been disrupted. We draw jointly from the strengths and guidance of Aboriginal teachings and traditions and from the most promising practices in human services to strengthen and help rebuild these relationships and connections. From these two influences, we offer services that are culturally appropriate and respectful of our clients’ own traditions and customs.
1) MISKANAWAH CULTURAL RESOURCES:
Miskanawah (meaning ‘pathways’ in Cree) is our philosophical framework that is rooted in Aboriginal teachings, ceremonies and guidance from Elders. These traditional values and beliefs have tremendous healing potential and are embedded within our service delivery practices. As its name implies, this approach assists individuals and families in building pathways to and within the community, strengthening their natural supports, and engaging in healthier ways of living.
We provide opportunities to take part in smudging, talking circles, sweat lodge ceremonies, drumming classes, a Round Dance and special ceremonies and celebrations to our clients, members of the community, and other groups like schools or businesses.
Aboriginal Mentoring Homes | Aboriginal Mentoring Homes is a residential program where youth live with a mentor family until they return home or become adults. Mentor homes offer a safe and supportive place for youth to finish growing up and develop the strengths and skills needed for adult living.The focus is on building trust, mutual respect and making healthy lifestyle choices while supporting and strengthening cultural identity and connection. The age range is typically 12 to 18 years. This program operates with the guiding concept of Oskipmatsahk, a Cree word meaning “youth transitioning to adulthood.”
Regional After Hours Youth Support (RAYS) | The RAYS program provides safety and stability to children, youth and families in crisis situations through immediate response. RAYS workers support clients in the crisis situation but also reduce the long term negative impacts of crisis. RAYS staff might be called to support medical or mental health needs, accompany clients to clinics or the hospital, provide behaviour management support within a home, and supervise clients at risk of suicide or self-harm.
Pathways Summer Camps | Pathways hosts summer cultural camps for youth ages 10 to 17 at no charge to participants. The camps focus on ‘Quieting the Spirit’ of young people by exposing them to traditional teachings, songs, stories, and ceremonies within the natural, comforting surroundings of Mother Earth.
Healthy Families | Pathways’ Healthy Families program provides a home visitor for families with newborn babies. Visits focus on strengthening parenting, attachment, and child health and safety. Pathways helps families to monitor the developmental milestones of their child. Home visitors also support the physical and mental well-being of the parent(s).
Nehiyaw Kihokewin | A Grandmother’s Council (Kokum’s Council) was called in order to develop our newest program, Nehiyaw Kihokewin. The name, Cree for “families visiting with the spirit of our grandmothers,” speaks to its development and its objective. Through this program, Aboriginal families with young children will be provided a home visitor that will support them in their child’s critical early years of development. In addition to a strong parenting curriculum, families will have access to the support of Elders, ceremony, and traditional teachings passed down directly from our Grandmothers.
Mahmawi-atoskiwin | Mahmawi-atoskiwin is a Cree word meaning “a group of people coming together to work as one.” Pathways has teamed with committed partners to work with Aboriginal families requiring Child and Family Service’s support. The program is led by the voice and needs of each family as everyone works together to ensure children are raised in safe families.
For more information, visit our website.