As a registered charity, Focus Forward provides Indigenous youth with experiential learning opportunities to cultivate career and life skills by working on community projects.
Each project is identified by the local community and may include things such as tiny homes, greenhouses, or community spaces. Our team then brings together the resources and personnel required to complete the shared project and execute the programming.
Throughout the programs, youth gain hands-on work experience, earn high school credits and apprenticeship hours and receive a compensation package, all while creating a positive impact for their community. They walk away with new life-skills, an understanding of their own abilities, and a sense of confidence that will help them focus forward on a positive and engaged future.
Focus Forward was created on 5 pillars that make up the structure and the success of all our projects:
Our process and these pillars are best explained from the perspective of our programs.
These programs are an opportunity to re-engage and empower youth through hands-on learning opportunities that can invoke a passion they never knew existed. Through close mentorship and hard, satisfying work students will learn more about their capabilities, interests, and what their future could be like.
They require collaboration of Indigenous and non-Indigenous people, tradespeople, mentors, generous sponsors and partners within the community. Throughout the process, Focus Forward aims to foster an appreciation for other people’s perspectives and culture to create empathy from everyone.
We aim to establish a more complete understanding of the issues that communities and cultures are facing; housing and food security concerns, the ensuing health impacts, and the problems with appropriation. We encourage the appreciation of incredibly unique culture and history – there is so much to learn and enjoy.
Drawing on innovative and sustainable technologies, we can implement solutions that will create lasting change. Tackling complex systematic challenges like food and housing security issues will require nothing less.
At Focus Forward, our collaboration with community partners is just the beginning – we make sure whatever project we helped to implement continues to create a positive impact for generations.
So long as we stay true to the five pillars of Focus Forward we will be able to make brick and mortar changes in communities across Canada. These changes will result in empowered youth who are better prepared to build themselves and their community their own brighter future.