About Us

The Southeast Child and Family Services - Prevention and Cultural Services Unit delivers culturally appropriate, prevention programs and services to the children, youth, and families of the eight Southeast communities. The Unit ensures our clients have access to cultural resources and ceremonies. Direct involvement with our Agency is not a requirement and our services are accessible to all Southeast members.

Our Services

Land based therapy was spearheaded to connect our youth, children and families with the land. Our Unit utilizes the services of experienced knowledge keepers who provide therapy by way of traditional teachings and knowledge sharing while being out on the land.

Activities include fishing (including ice fishing and setting nets), snaring, skinning, and preparing wild game, canoeing, picking medicines and hiking, while connecting our clients with a healthy mentor.

Weekly Programming

Youth and families have access to culturalbased programs almost every evening of the week. Programs are offered both virtually and in-person at Southeast offices located at 360 Broadway Ave and 1410 Mountain Ave. Community residents are able to participate in city-based programming remotely. Tablets are made available to those who don't have the technological resources at home. Some of our programs include:

  • Beading
  • Family/Youth Sweats
  • Female Wellness & Leadership
  • Mashkiki Medicine Camp
  • Mikiwahp Life Skills Program
  • Paint Night
  • Recovery Support Circle
  • Sacred Seven
  • Sewing
  • Sexual Exploitation & Gang Awareness
  • Spirit of the Story
  • Traditional Parenting
  • Young Women & Men's Drum Groups

Ceremony

When youth or families express interest in attending or learning more about traditional ceremonies it is our duty to ensure they have that opportunity. We incorporate teachings and ceremony into most programs and events that we offer. Ceremonies that our clients have attended and participated include:

  • Cedar Bath
  • Fasting
  • Rites of Passage
  • Shake tent
  • Sundance
  • Sweat lodges
  • Naming and pipe ceremonies

Seasonal Retreats

At the beginning of each seasonal solstice, we offer cultural and land-based camps for female and male youth. The camps are held out of the city to help promote their cultural connections with the land. Some activities offered at camps are:

  • Canoeing and paddling
  • Hiking
  • Leadership development
  • Medicine picking
  • Positive relationship building
  • Wilderness survival training

Staff

  • Director of Prevention - Kyle McClintock
  • Prevention Services Coordinator - Tyler West
  • Prevention Services Worker - Sandra Sveinson
  • Prevention Services Worker - Jasmine Greene
  • Communications Coordinator - Stewart Racette
  • Community Resource Specialist - Julia Seymour
  • Prevention Reporting Coordinator - Roxanne Hamilton
  • Prevention Reporting Worker - Cheyenne Beaudry
  • Prevention Reporting Worker - Shania Thordarson
  • Admin Assistant - Reanne Hamilton
  • Prevention Support - Fannie Hudson

Highlights and Activities

Waterways Canoe Camps

Early in 2020, the Agency purchased 88 canoes: 10 for each Southeast community and 8 for the Prevention Unit. Paddling is a great recreational and cultural activity and the Agency wanted to ensure that youth and families were trained adequately in water safety and canoe operation. We met with the Manitoba Paddling Association who linked us with Waterways Inc. a non-profit organization with paddling instructors, all of whom are accomplished world-class athletes. Over the course of the summer, Waterways attended to each of our Southeast communities and provided two camps two camps in Winnipeg.

Land Based Therapy

Land based therapy was spearheaded to connect the youth with the land. The program was so successful that it was expanded its number of Land-Based Therapists and there are many youth and young adults participating. The next step is to connect families to the Land Based Therapists and have the families participate in these outdoor activities such as fishing (including ice fishing and setting nets), snaring, skinning, and preparing wild game, canoeing, picking medicines and hiking while building meaningful relationships with a trusted adult.

Prevention Therapeutic Services

Like many other agencies, SECFS had been utilizing the services of Action Therapists which was developed by Mitch Bourbonniere, who is highly regarded in the Indigenous and social welfare communities. The Unit oversees over 50 contracted individuals who work closely with our youth and families in providing preventative therapeutic care. Unifying in this manner has allowed for greater access to resources and support for our children and families.

High School Graduation

Each year the Agency hosts a large graduation ceremony for our youth in care high school graduates. This year we held two graduation ceremonies at the Historic Fort Gibraltar in the St. Boniface area of Winnipeg. We split the event into two days to meet gathering restrictions. Elder Carl Stone was our MC, and musician Leonard Sumner provided entertainment, the graduates and their guests took their photos from our photo booth to have a memento of the event. All graduates received a star blanket and electronic gift (laptop, tablet) in recognition of their success.

Vicarious Trauma Training

As a result of the work that the Direct Service Workers in the Agency engage, they are often exposed to traumatic stories and experiences from and with our clients. To support staff well-being and prevent vicarious trauma (aka compassion fatigue or burnout), the Unit held a half-day virtual session each month for staff. This training was also provided to our collaterals in Shawneim Abinoojii and Inaadiziwin.

Social Distance Fasting Camp

Several of our youth clients are annual participants in the Sundance, a ceremony where participants fast for several days. Many Sundance Leaders opted to cancel or postpone their Sundance ceremony for one year due to COVID-19 and this left many of our youth longing for connection to spirit. Following health guidelines for social distancing and advice from Elders, 7 youth and 1 staff member were put out on the land. After their fast, they were feasted and received teachings.

Virtual Programming

The Unit organized a number of virtual programming, workshops, and training for the children, youth, and families including Traditional Parenting, Sacred 7 Family Program, Craft Nights, Women's Singing, Pow-Wow Dancing and Singing, and Elder's Visit where the participants learn stories and legends from Elders. The Agency purchased tablets to lend to the registered participants and delivered activity or supply kits to promote participation. The virtual programming will continue until such time in-person gatherings can resume.

Pauingassi Family Camp

Our Unit was asked by the Pauingassi community staff to deliver a family camp in for four days in August. The event was a huge success. The camp was situated at a beautiful location a mere 10-minute boat ride from the community. In addition to the cabin located there, the Team put up two prospector tents and a long tipi to utilize as space for workshops. Participants learned canoeing skills taught by world class paddling athletes from Waterways, learned to make paracord bracelets, dreamcatchers and how to pick traditional medicine and build a sweat lodge. Over 100 people attended daily. The week ended with fireworks and entertainment from Anishinaabe musician Leonard Sumner who has played venues worldwide including the Australian Opera House and says that playing on the shore at Pauingassi camp at sundown is his all-time favourite stage.

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