Pilot project for Winnipeg youth moves forward
The University of Winnipeg is pleased that today Winnipeg City Council approved development of a pilot project — YouthUnited@Winnipeg — which will begin next summer (2017) as Canada celebrates its 150th anniversary.
It will see 20 youth working and studying together in Winnipeg’s North End, half from the suburbs, and the other half from the inner city. This innovative program specifically aims to bring to life the Truth and Reconciliation Commission recommendation to break down barriers that can contribute to misconceptions and racism while actively engage youth in education and dialogue.
The project has been championed by Winnipeg City Councillor Brian Mayes. The curriculum for YouthUnited@Winnipeg is currently in development with Dr. Shauna MacKinnon, Associate Professor (Urban and Inner City Studies) as lead and will be guided by a Community Advisory Committee.
YouthUnited@Winnipeg will be a 15 week, intensive work-study course that will run from May 2017 to August 2017. Students will spend four days per week working and earning wages in a North End or inner city organization which will bring them into direct contact with community residents. They will spend the fifth day in a “roving classroom” that will allow them to participate in ceremonies, sweat lodges, learn from Indigenous and faith-based leaders, and be exposed to community-based programs that are having a positive impact. Students who take the program will earn six university credits.
The course will conclude with an all-day student conference to be held in mid-September at Merchants Corner. It will be open to community members and inner-city high school students, so that they and others who are interested can learn about the program, and about the practice of reconciliation in Winnipeg’s inner-city and North End communities.