Indigenous Leadership for Community Development

Indigenous Leadership for Community  Development

Coady Institute is based in the traditional unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq people.  It is one of the few educational organizations in Canada that has specific and focused niche programming for leadership and community development for Indigenous communities locally and globally. For 60 years, we have been engaging with emerging and established Indigenous leaders from across Canada and developing countries around the world.

Coady Institute promotes sustainable, practical and culturally respectful approaches to development practice. We engage Indigenous facilitators and program staff to lead this vital work and involve advisors, Mentors and Elders in program design and delivery. We invite key Indigenous leaders and experts to engage in dialogues with our participants, as well as the STFX and surrounding communities. Informed by the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP), the recommendations from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in Canada and the establishment of the Sustainable Development Goals, our work supports and equips Indigenous leaders as they bring about the changes they want for themselves and their communities.

Workshops

Indigenous Approach to Asset-based, Community-driven Development (IABCD): Principles, Methods & Tools for Practice

These workshops will provide an Indigenous approach to community-driven development and include the introduction of practical and straightforward community-building tools. You will be able to bring these tools back to your community/organization and immediately implement them. The workshops will introduce you to IABCD principles, methods and tools for community-driven actions.

There are two on-line workshops scheduled:

  • IABCD Part I – Tuesday, September 22, 2020, from 1:00 pm-3:30 pm EST.
  • IABCD Part II – Tuesday, October 13, 2020 from 1:00 pm-3:30 pm EST.

 For further information, click here.

Courses

Indigenous Women in Community Leadership (IWCL)

An award-winning initiative offered since 2011, the Indigenous Women in Community Leadership (IWCL) Enhanced Mentorship program is for First Nations, Métis and Inuit women who are committed to supporting development and social change in their organizations, communities, and nations. The program is delivered using Coady’s innovative and blended approach to asset-based leadership development and prioritizes Indigenous knowledge and ways of learning and includes mentorship and community project development.

Click here for full course description.

Indigenous Women Leadership for Community Development Short Course

This short course is an introduction to leadership for Indigenous women and typically runs over five days.  The course is offered in communities in partnership with previous graduates and/or Indigenous organizations rather than on-campus.  The course is designed to build on Indigenous women’s strengths and experiences and contribute to building a network of leaders seeking to contribute to positive change in their communities.  Content includes concepts such as self-empowerment, personal development, leadership skills, women’s experience of power, cultural history, and strategies for Indigenous community development.

A schedule of courses being offered for 2021 is currently in development.  For further information, please contact womenlead@stfx.ca.

Women’s Leadership in Community Development Online Course

This online program inspires women around the world (Indigenous and non-Indigenous) to enhance their leadership capacities for citizen-led community-driven development and create spaces for social change in solidarity with others, focusing on tools that prioritize equity and inclusion. The course welcomes women of all ages and backgrounds who are able to demonstrate the ways they are currently engaged in local development in their respective countries.

Click here for more information .

Projects and Partnerships

Further Education Society of Alberta – Going the Distance Project

Led by FESA, Coady provides support to this unique and innovative project that addresses the under-representation of Indigenous populations in the labor force by supporting businesses in the Tourism and Hospitality industry.  The GD project helps develop a better understanding of workplace Literacy and Essential Skills (LES) needs and then design solutions to address these needs.   Coady graduates are involved in the design and delivery of Asset-based Community Development workshops for Indigenous communities involved and other adult education supports as needed.

For more information, see:  https://www.furthered.ca/going-the-distance.

Nobel Women’s Initiative – Sister-to-Sister Mentorship Program

Coady Institute is pleased to partner with Nobel Women’s Initiative on their Sister-to-Sister Mentorship Program. Each year the program brings five grassroots young women activists from around the world to Ottawa, Canada for 6 weeks of hands-on communications and advocacy training. The Sister-to-Sister Mentorship program has supported young women activists from Sudan, South Sudan, Liberia, Burma, Mexico, Honduras and Guatemala. These young women are at the forefront of movements to promote peace, justice and equality in their communities. Since 2016, Coady has provided support for a young Indigenous woman activist from a First Nations, Métis or Inuit community to participate in the program. Cohorts come to Coady for a one-week leadership workshop during the Program.

For more information, see:  https://nobelwomensinitiative.org/category/sister-to-sister/

Pembina Institute – Applying an energy-focused Asset Based Community Development framework in remote Indigenous communities

The Pembina Institute in partnership with the Coady Institute is engaging with selected remote Indigenous communities in Canada to develop and evaluate a new approach to community engagement that combines the internationally recognized Asset Based Community Development (ABCD) framework with community energy planning processes. The goal is a new hybrid framework for energy planning and economic development that identifies and mobilizes the often unrecognized strengths and assets in a remote Indigenous community. We will explore if this more advanced framework, with its roots in international development, can facilitate deeper connections and community engagement resulting in successful clean energy and diesel reduction projects.  Coady graduates and their communities are involved in this project.

For more information, see:  https://www.pembina.org/

Events

Indigenous Women in Community Leadership Alumnae Gathering (November 2019)

Nearly a decade after the program first began, IWCL graduates continue to make a significant impact in communities across Canada as leaders of social change. For the first time ever, 100+ Indigenous women – graduates of Coady’s IWCL program, their mentors, Elders, and invited guests – came together for a transformative 4-day Alumni Gathering on the campus of St. Francis Xavier University in Antigonish, Nova Scotia, in Mi’kma’ki, the unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq people.

For further information, see:  https://coady.stfx.ca/iwcl-gathering/

Butterflies in Spirit: Meet MMIWG Advocate Lorelei Williams

Butterflies in Spirit: Meet MMIWG Advocate Lorelei Williams

Graduate Lorelei Williams is raising awareness and advocating for victims and families of Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG) through Butterflies in Spirit – a dance group comprised of family members of MMIWG, formed to empower Indigenous women and raise awareness about her aunt Belinda Williams who went missing in 1978, and cousin Tanya Holyk who was murdered in 1996.

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Jeannine Deveau Education Equity Endowment Fund set to Amplify Celebrity Donation to StFX’s Coady Institute

Jeannine Deveau Education Equity Endowment Fund set to Amplify Celebrity Donation to StFX’s Coady Institute

Every new $1 becomes $2 dollars as fund agrees to match donations | Earlier this week, Coady Institute kicked off a campaign in support of the Institite’s Indigenous programming. Ryan Reynolds’ and Blake Lively’s $200,000 gift launched the campaign. The Jeannine Deveau Education Equity Endowment Fund is now willing to commit $500,000 to Circle of Abundance – Amplifying Indigenous Women’s Leadership by matching dollar-to-dollar Blake and Ryan’s donation and up to another $300,000 to match any new donations.

read more

Indigenous Approach to Asset-based, Community-driven Development (IABCD): Principles, Methods & Tools for Practice

There are two on-line workshops scheduled:

  • IABCD Part I – Tuesday, September 22, 2020, from 1:00 pm-3:30 pm EST.
  • IABCD Part II – Tuesday, October 13, 2020 from 1:00 pm-3:30 pm EST.

 Registration for the workshops will open mid-July.

These workshops will provide an Indigenous approach to community-driven development and include the introduction of practical and straightforward community-building tools. You will be able to bring these tools back to your community/organization and immediately implement them. The workshops will introduce you to IABCD principles, methods and tools for community-driven actions. 

These workshops are made possible with the support of Comart Family Foundation and the Jeannine Deveau Achievement Fund.

IABCD Part I Workshop

This workshop focuses on an introduction to an Indigenous approach to asset-based community-driven development.  We will share stories of successful community-driven responses to the current pandemic, and other pressing issues, and differentiate between needs-based and asset-based approaches to development on a personal and professional level. You will be introduced to IABCD, learn about IABCD principles, practice appreciative interviewing, and identify common threads and discuss the underlying values of our practice.

IABCD Part II Workshop

The second workshop will introduce practical and straightforward community-building tools, including community asset mapping of individual skills, groups, economic opportunities, and natural and physical resources. We will focus mainly on demystifying your local economy with a tool called the “Leaky Bucket” tool that helps people at the grassroots better understand the local economy. You will have the opportunity to practice using some of these tools in this workshop. You will also be introduced to examples of Indigenous communities engaged in using ABCD approaches and discuss how you can use them for community-driven action.

Our Approach

Coady is known for its interactive and participatory adult education approach.  We are purposely limiting workshops to 25 participants to optimize your learning experience and ability to connect in small groups. If we receive a high number of registrants, we will offer additional IABCD workshops on future dates.

Background

In September 2019, the Coady began sharing our work with partners around community building in Indigenous communities. The starting point of an Indigenous approach was the learnings we took from past experiences with Indigenous women leaders and communities. From that work, the IABCD principles emerged, which will guide us in these workshops and shape those to come.

Our emerging practice in IABCD are part of an ever-evolving body of work that explores how Indigenous people build and sustain communities in the past and present. It has developed through our learnings from nine cohorts of Indigenous Women in Community Leadership (IWCL) program, our 2019 alumni gathering, on-going projects with alumni and their communities, our work with partners and our working group.

What we have seen is that increasingly, Indigenous communities are turning away from the needs and deficit models and are instead, choosing strengths-based and assets- based approaches. When communities are the drivers of solutions to their most pressing challenges, they are most successful. Moses Coady, founder of the Coady Institute, would say, “They are using what they have, to get what they have not.” We also understand that given the current realities of being in a global pandemic, directly engaging communities can be difficult. We will discuss strategies to address these challenges in the workshops.

In our upcoming, interactive online workshops we focus on sharing what IABCD is, its principles, methods and tools.  You will leave these workshops with ideas, tools and approaches to effectively engage community members and identifying community assets. Come prepared to share your experiences and understandings of community development.