Building on Abundance in Indigenous Communities

September 11 – October 22, 2023

Applications have closed

Online delivery

Applications for this course are open to First Nations, Métis, and Inuit participants.

This course is online. You will need reliable internet access (high speed is recommended).

This seven-week course explores building Indigenous communities from an abundance-based approach, starting with the foundation of gifts, skills and talents already existing in Indigenous communities. You will examine your community’s current assets, opportunities, and challenges and be introduced to tools, principles and practices for strengthening it from within.

The course will help you examine your community’s context, identify the starting point for community engagement and how this approach can be a framework for decolonization and self-determination.

You will explore community values, vision, and the importance of holistic wealth. You will also examine case studies of communities that have successfully driven their own development.

By the end of the course, you will understand an abundance-based approach, some tools, principles and practices to implement it and see its potential and limitations for inspiring and building Indigenous communities.

Learning Objectives:

You will:

  • Understand the concept of an abundance-based approach to building Indigenous communities.
  • Identify and examine your community’s assets, opportunities, and challenges, including historical and systemic factors that affect your community’s current realities.
  • Develop practical skills in identifying and building on community gifts, skills and talents.
  • Explore community values, vision, and holistic wealth.
  • Understand this approach as a framework for decolonization and self-determination.
  • Gain practical tools, principles and practices to implement an abundance-based approach.

By the end of the course, you will be able to apply your understanding of an abundance-based approach and the tools, principles and practices covered in the course to your community. You should also have a critical awareness of the potential and limitations of this approach, which will help you navigate its implementation in a way that best serves your community’s unique needs and interests.


You and your community (or workplace/organization) will benefit by having the following:

  • Knowledge of an abundance-based approach to community building.
  • Understanding of tools, principles and practices for building and empowering Indigenous communities.
  • Increased knowledge of how to mobilize community assets to address opportunities and challenges
  • Development of critical thinking, reflection, and collaboration skills.
  • Enhancing professional and personal growth.
  • Networking opportunities with fellow community builders and practitioners in the field
  • Opportunity to make a positive impact on your community.

Learning Methods:

Using Zoom and Moodle (online learning platform), the weekly live sessions offer a variety of ways for you to learn and reflect through:

  • Short presentations, case studies and speakers.
  • Work in pairs and small break-out groups for experience-sharing.
  • Learning by doing – applying tools and practices between sessions.
  • Critical questioning and reflection.

Your Commitment:

This seven-week course runs from September 11 – October 22, 2023. Two-hour live learning sessions occur every Wednesday from 6:00 – 8:00 PM (AST).

Ideally, to complete this course, we recommend scheduling 6-8 hours of your time in your calendar each week to:

  • Attend weekly two-hour live online sessions. Note: Sessions are not recorded.
  • Review 1-2 readings, videos, or podcasts between live sessions and contribute to the weekly discussion forum(s).
  • Practice the tools and principles.
  • Complete the course assignments: 1) Storytelling assignment and 2) Community engagement plan.

The course is purposefully designed for you to integrate your new learning through a gradual and cumulative process.

Technology Requirement

You need:

  • Reliable internet access (high speed is recommended)
  • Headphones with a built-in microphone

Is this Course for You?

Yes, if you are an Indigenous community-builder, connector, advocate, volunteer, or leader with limited experience and familiarity with community-based initiatives. You also demonstrate a motivation to create positive and meaningful community change.

No, if you are already an experienced community builder (5+ years of experience) or have already taken the Building on Abundance in Indigenous Communities (BAIC), Indigenous Women in Community Leadership (IWCL) or Asset-based and Citizen-Led Development (ABCD) courses.


The maximum capacity for this course is 20 participants to optimize your learning experience and connection through smaller working groups.

As a part of this course, we also compile a collection of Indigenous community-building stories as a resource for future programs.


Coady Institute strives to ensure change leaders working in communities around the world have access to its courses. All successful candidates for this course receive a full bursary of $1,500, made possible by the support of Coady’s Circle of Abundance as well as individual and institutional donors. 

The course format and content is extremely beneficial if you are working in any area that has to do with humans, environment, and community.

The social justice cornerstones of the Institute allows for spaces where conversations can occur to support understanding and continuous reconciliation.

Jade Willoughby
KLA Management


Please Note

Please note that Coady Institute does not accept third party applications. Individuals need to submit their application via Coady’s website and should use caution when approached by those offering services to complete the application and admissions process.