Canadian Heritage

Canadian Heritage

October 13, 2010 12:30 ET

Government of Canada Supports Prevention Workshops for Aboriginal Youth

WINNIPEG, MANITOBA--(Marketwire - Oct. 13, 2010) - On behalf of the Honourable James Moore, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, Shelly Glover, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Member of Parliament (Saint Boniface), today announced funding for the Sexuality Education Resource Centre Manitoba (SERC).

This funding will be used to deliver the project Sacred Lives: Preventing sexual exploitation of Winnipeg Aboriginal youth through peer-based education. Under the continuous guidance of Aboriginal elders, community-based educators will share their life experiences through culturally focused presentations and workshops. The project is expected to benefit up to 900 Aboriginal students aged 10 to 17 attending Winnipeg inner-city schools.

"The Government of Canada is committed to supporting initiatives that improve the cultural, social, economic, and personal prospects of Aboriginal youth," said Minister Moore. "By offering educational workshops that reflect traditional values, practices, and teachings, this organization is helping reduce the risk of sexual exploitation among young Aboriginal people."

"Initiatives that focus on connecting Aboriginal youth with their culture, building self-confidence and self-esteem, and motivating them to make positive life choices are key to engaging the participants," said Mrs. Glover. "By sharing their life experiences and Aboriginal cultural teachings, the experiential community-based educators are providing inner-city youth with invaluable resources."

"SERC is delighted to have the support of the Government of Canada in this important project," said Lori Johnson, RN, Executive Director of SERC and member of the Métis Nation of Manitoba. "We know that by reaching out to young Aboriginal girls, we will be able to increase their resiliency and assist them in resisting the efforts of those who would attempt to lure them into the exploitative and dangerous life of the street in general and the sex trade in particular. This work will help prevent, in the first place, the hardship, heartache, and many dangers that go hand in hand with the sexual exploitation of young women in our society. We know it will save precious lives and we thank the Government of Canada for its support."

The Government of Canada has provided funding of $74,080 through the Cultural Connections for Aboriginal Youth initiative (formerly known as the Urban Multipurpose Aboriginal Youth Centre Initiative) of the Department of Canadian Heritage's Aboriginal Peoples' Program. This initiative provides Aboriginal young people aged 10 to 24, living in urban settings across Canada, with programming that incorporates Aboriginal values, cultures, and traditional practices in projects and activities designed to improve their social, economic, and personal prospects and to strengthen their cultural identity.

(This news release is available on the Internet at under Newsroom.)

Contact Information

  • Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage
    and Official Languages
    Jean-Luc Benoit - Director of Communications
    Canadian Heritage
    Prairies and Northern Region
    Francine D. Lefebvre
    Director - Regional Communications
    Tel.: 204-983-4367 or Cell: 204-899-8611
    Canadian Heritage
    Media Relations