Algoma District School Board hosts community partners as they take part in Cultural Competency Training
The Algoma District School Board (ADSB) and the Sault Ste. Marie Indian Friendship Centre (IFC) partnered to provide our school communities with Cultural Competency Training. On Monday April 7, 2014 we brought a diverse group of community partners together and provided them the same training.
Maya Chacaby (pictured at left), Aboriginal Cultural Competency Education Coordinator with the Ontario Federation of Indigenous Friendship Centres (OFIFC) facilitated the training. Maya is a Specialist in Aboriginal Studies, and a strong public advocate for aboriginal language education. She received the 2007-2008 President's Award for the Outstanding Native Student of the Year from the Jackman Humanities Institute while attending University of Toronto. She has travelled to Sault Ste Marie numerous times over the last year to provide her unique training to ADSB staff and administration including a session with ADSB classroom teachers.
The overall purpose of the training is to assist participants in acquiring basic demographic, historic, and cultural information about Aboriginal people in Ontario, with an emphasis on the impacts of education and learning on urban Aboriginal people. The training provides participants with the basic understanding of the impacts of historical and intergenerational trauma, Aboriginal education practices and priorities, and Aboriginal engagement practices which will lead to increased cultural competency.
ADSB hosted the event and it was facilitated by the Sault Ste Marie Indian Friendship Centre staff.
The turnout was impressive with representation from:
- Algoma Public Health
- Algoma Family Services
- Algoma University
- Canadian Mental Health
- Children’s Aid Society
- Correctional Services Canada
- Community Living Algoma
- Crown Attorney’s Office
- Don Doucet Facility
- North Shore Tribal Council
- Ontario Works
- SSM Police Services
- Sault Area Hospital
- Breton House
- Court System
Cultural Competency training is focused on increasing knowledge, enhancing self-awareness, and in this training session in particular, focused on strengthening understanding for those who work both directly and indirectly with Aboriginal people. The participants were from a significant cross-range of organizations who work in justice, policing, child and family services, education, business and government. Participants learned more about terminology and the language as well as aspects of educational history such as Indian residential schools. With Maya’s assistance participants examined culture and diversity and how their own cultural backgrounds can affect personal interactions.
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