INVESTING OUR CHILDREN

Sustained cultural change will come from children. In strongcommunities, young people embrace their culture. They value creativity and collaboration. They are dedicated family members.

My First Steps My Path encourages children to be lifelong learners. Through support of daycares, kindergarten, after school programs and school curricula, we work to improve access to quality education. This will create a new generation of informed, educated citizens who make a meaningful contribution to their community while supporting social change.

OUR IMPACT

We’ve increased attendance of girls to 75 in 2016 in the Bergnek community.

In Vancouver, we created a curriculum for kids to plant, nurture, harvest, store and cook the foods they grow.

The wall in Vancouver serves the needs of 50 children each week.

OUR SUCCESS STORIES

My First Steps, My Path is focused on education at all levels and ultimately, we will implement our own school program. See more on this under research and development. At present My Arms Wide Open uses this cause to focus on engaging children, youth and at-risk adults. At the RayCAMM Centre in Vancouver, Canadas Downtown Eastside we developed a curriculum to support Warrens Wall. The education included: Education about growing and tending vegetables and fruits in an urban environment. Supporting building of initial walls by preparing the seedlings. Preparing the wall for each of the plants for insertion into the wall, including the soil preparation and seedling plantings. Tending the plants as they grow with water and fertilizer. Understanding the watering system and maintaining it. Replacing any damaged or dead plants as needed . Harvesting fruit and vegetables from the individual plants and the surrounding trees (as they mature). Cleaning and packing harvested food for use in the food bank or for sale to local residents. Switching plants seasonally as required. Maintaining the wall structure, under adult supervision from members of Ray-Cam staff and the Bergnek and Cradock communities.

One of the key outcomes and design of the project was to create a curriculum that would support the reconnecting of the circle of community. What we mean by this is that we connected toddles with youth, with adults and with the elderly. Every age group can and does participate in the garden. The wall is built in a curve starting at half a meter high and rising as it curves back and forth to 2 metres tall. Plants are on both sides and depending on how tall the person is they can work on the part of the wall that thy can reach, helping others on either side of the wall as well as next to them.

OTHER CAUSES