Canadian Heritage

Canadian Heritage

September 08, 2009 13:00 ET

Government of Canada Invests in Youth Leadership Programs

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - Sept. 8, 2009) - On behalf of the Honourable James Moore, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, Lee Richardson, Member of Parliament (Calgary Centre), today announced funding for the Canadian Red Cross Society, Southern Alberta Region, for its Youth Leadership through the Arts project.

This project aims to involve urban Aboriginal young people in their community by delivering arts and leadership workshops. These workshops will focus on health promotion and healthy choices and allow participants to develop and share prevention messages using a variety of art forms. Works of art created will be used to educate and create awareness in their communities.

"Our Government is proud to encourage Aboriginal young people to discover their creativity and contribute to the health of their community," said Minister Moore. "It's great to partner with an organization that empowers them to become leaders by harnessing their creative talent in a positive way."

"This funding will play a vital role in encouraging young people to make healthy decisions," said Mr. Richardson. "I am pleased that our Government is providing the financial support to make this project a reality."

"This important funding from the Government of Canada will allow the Canadian Red Cross Society to promote confidence and enhance survival skills among at-risk Aboriginal young people in southern Alberta," said Steve Armstrong, Alberta Provincial Director for the Canadian Red Cross Society. "Participants in this hands-on art training feel empowered and are ready to take on leadership roles with other youth in their communities."

The Canadian Red Cross Society is a not-for-profit organization and has been successful in encouraging Aboriginal young people to live a healthy lifestyle using art instruction and cultural awareness. These positive opportunities increase their leadership abilities and allow them to become more active in shaping their future.

The Government of Canada has provided funding of $40,000 under the Urban Multipurpose Aboriginal Youth Centre Initiative ( of the Department of Canadian Heritage's Aboriginal Peoples' Program ( This initiative supports community, culturally-based projects for urban Aboriginal young people to improve their social, economic, and personal prospects and to strengthen their cultural identity.

This news release is available on the Internet at under Media Room.

Contact Information

  • Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage
    and Official Languages
    Deirdra McCracken - Director of Communications
    Canadian Heritage
    Western Region
    Derick McNeil
    A/Regional Manager
    604-666-2454 or 604-351-2693
    Canadian Heritage
    Media Relations