Staff Training for Indigenous Camp and Youth Programs
On behalf of 3-Fires staff, thank you for choosing to work with youth!
The success of your program absolutely depends on staff - participant interaction. Program and staff training is critical to helping staff realize how powerful they are in setting up a positive experience for camper participants. Staff - participant interaction shapes the youth's perception of every aspect of your program; if staff think it's 'cool', then participants will also think it's 'cool'. Train staff to broadcast positive messages like 'school is cool' and 'being Indigenous rocks'! Highly trained staff are key to bringing about positive messages infused into wonderful and engaging programs and making youth feel accepted and important. Youth will thank you for your excellent work.
Going forward, strive to remember how much your staff influence your participants. You are hiring and training role models as your program staff, so set up a model work environment. Encourage staff to learn, grow, and develop their leadership skills. By training your staff to lead, you are also becoming a better leader.
Time can be extremely limited with participants, however, with good training, even short timeframes can have a positive and profound impact on youth. Train staff to model the desired behaviours every day, in every interaction with youth. Inspire them to integrate ‘good life’ cultural teachings into their programs. Ensure they have exposure to many training methods and encourage them to create and offer a variety of learning mediums for youth participants. And finally, demonstrate your commitment to youth by objectively evaluating your staff and program's impact on youth.
Give your staff every opportunity to grow, develop and communicate their positive regard to every participant who enters your program because all who leave your program are your future leaders.
In the end, Excellence is something that we must all work towards.
We look forward to working with you in a future workshop!
Carla Mishibinijima, 3-Fires Lead Consultant and Trainer