This course provides students with an opportunity to consolidate and enhance Aboriginal youth care practice skills. Students will be supported to develop and apply practice skills that reflect the experience of Aboriginal communities and Indigenous ways of approaching child and youth care practice in a range of settings. The primary focus will be on strengths, resilience, risks and challenges for Aboriginal children, youth, families and communities.
The following global ideas guide the design and delivery of this course:
- Children, youth, families and workers have a diversity of culture, spirituality, religion, family structure, sexual orientation, gender identity and socioeconomic conditions. Recognition of and response to diversity is central to effective working relationships between children, youth, families and communities
- A significant number of children and youth that Child and Youth Care Counselors work with are “at risk.” Understanding why and exploring the issues facing populations of children and youth who are at risk is central to effective child and youth care practice. The issues include: learning disabilities, ADHD and/or neuromotor difficulties; fetal alcohol syndrome, depression and potential suicide; street life; abuse; delinquency; post traumatic stress disorder, family crisis, poverty, and so on
- Stress and crisis are often major causal factors of increasing difficulties in the lives of Aboriginal children, youth and families. Effective responses to stress and crisis can support children, youth and families to adapt to difficult circumstances in culturally affirming ways including seeking additional support when necessary, discovering effective ways to cope and change and building on their resiliency
- Given the legacy and impact of colonization, many Aboriginal individuals and families experience a sense of grief and loss. Recognition of the impact of loss on Aboriginal peoples is a starting place for working with individuals and families. Culturally appropriate practices and approaches to wellness provide a sense of hope and help individuals and families discover new possibilities for the future
- Child and youth care practitioners work in and with a variety of systems that include Aboriginal and mainstream services. An understanding of relevant systems and an ability to collaborate with other systems is an essential aspect of good practice
- The ability to participate in a collaborative planning process with others is a necessary, sometimes frustrating and often joyful part of the work
- Assessment is essential to understanding and planning. Assessment is a collaborative process that supports the active involvement and self-determination of the children, youth, families and communities with whom we work
- Child and Youth Care Counsellors document their work. Documentation holds the practitioner accountable and contributes to continuity but also directly impacts the people with whom child and youth care counselors are working. Documentation, reports and course assignments must always respect confidentiality, focus on assets and capacity and be mindful of potential audiences.
Methods Of Instruction
- Guest Speakers
- Field Trips
- Student directed learning.
Means of Assessment
This course will conform to Douglas College policies regarding the number and weighting of evaluations. Typical means of evaluation would include a combination of:
- Collaborative learning
- Student Journals
- Field Observation and Research
- Group Projects and Presentation
- Written Reports
Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:
- Identify factors and conditions in the individual, family, community and society that foster resilience
- Identify factors and conditions that put Aboriginal children, youth and families at risk
- Understand and use strengths based, culturally appropriate strategies for working with children, youth and families who are at risk
- Understand and use inclusive practice strategies that respond effectively to a diversity of cultures, religions, family structures, sexual orientations, gender identities and socioeconomic conditions
- Describe and begin to use the Circle of Courage (belonging, mastery, independence and generosity) in relation to work with children, youth and families
- Describe and begin to use the Medicine Wheel in relation to work with self and with children, youth and families
- Describe and use the Ecological Systems Theory model in relation to work with children, youth and families
- Research, discuss, apply and share knowledge about a particular practice issue
- Discuss assessment from the perspective of Aboriginal children, youth and families
- Develop the ability to use effective crisis resolution strategies.
Textbooks and Materials to be Purchased by Students
A Reading Package will be assigned.