What to look for in an Indigenous Awareness training program
Do you know what to look for in an Indigenous Awareness training program? We found an independent checklist* and put ourselves and our program, Working Effectively with Indigenous Peoples®, against it. We are proud to say that we exceed all areas outlined on the checklist. Take a look:
1. A program that includes a needs assessement.
We discuss the client’s needs for the training from the first inquiry. We look to ensure that your goals are met for each training session. If requested we can take a formal needs assessment of the anticipated participants to gain insight into their expectations and questions before the training session.
2. A well-researched, fact-based program.
Our book, Working Effectively with Indigenous Peoples® is in its 4th edition. In addition to our training, the book has been used by post secondary institutions for their courses. Libraries and bookstores regularly order copies for their collections. Between the experience of Bob Joseph and the research skills of Cynthia Joseph, LLB, the book is a best seller.
3. A program that deals with contemporary Indigenous issues such as economics, education, social conditions, treaties, taxation, self-government, and land claims.
We feel that it is important for participants in our training to understand the historical and legal importance of Indigenous Peoples in Canada to fully understand the contemporary Indigenous issues that affect Canadians, Indigenous and non-Indigenous. We provide honest and straightforward answers to questions about whether Indigenous people living on reserves get free housing or free post-secondary education. Whether Indigenous people pay taxes in Canada. Whether there is a connection between Indigenous unemployment and Indigenous health and social problems.
Within the history section of our training we explain the history of treaties through the present BC Treaty Commission and the Specific Claims Commission. We explain the importance of self-government and the forms that governance has taken to date.
“Having an interest in the progression of industry – aboriginal relations, this course has given me an informed and interesting appreciation for the issues on the table today and in the future.” J. G. • Moose Mountain Technical Services
4. Professional facilitators well-versed in the subject matter.
Our facilitators are Indigenous People who have first-hand knowledge of the communities and are entrepreneurial people having their own businesses and having worked for large corporations. They have been facilitating Indigenous awareness training for over 50 years combined.
5. Indigenous speakers and resource people who can share experiences and perspectives.
Bob Joseph is an Indigenous person, or more specifically a status Indian, and is a member of the Gwawaenuk Nation. He is an initiated member of the Hamatsa Society and the son of a hereditary chief who will one day in accordance with strict cultural laws become a hereditary chief. Bob is a certified Master Trainer, with over 20 years experience.
Flavio Caron is the son of an Ojibway mother and Italian-Canadian father, Flavio has grown up in two worlds, and is thankful for what they both bring to his perspectives on life, business and happiness, and has been delivering training for 20 years.
Claire Marshall is Mi’kmaq from the Millbrook First Nation in Nova Scotia, who has 25 years of experience specializing in Indigenous engagement and community development and has been delivering training for 10 years.
6. An environment where participants can ask sensitive questions and explore differing perspectives.
“A good overview of a complex area. Appreciated the matter-of-fact delivery of sensitive topics.” A. M. • Shell Canada Limited
“This workshop was highly informative. Including the perspectives and experiences of First Nations… sets this workshop apart from other Aboriginal awareness training programs.” R.D. • Enbridge Pipelines
7. A program that does not evade difficult issues - such as racism - but addresses them in a non-threatening way.
It is important when training to address difficult issues, such as racism, in a non-threatening way. From our experience racism flows from an ignorance of the facts. Once provided with rational, fact-based information participants are able to understand the history of a difficult issue and see solutions in a different manner.
“Workshop leader knowledgeable, sets excellent pace and his presentation style is calming and enjoyable, assisting understanding of material.”
S. G. • Hunter Dickinson Inc.
8. Good resource materials that can be used in the session and then as reference tools.
As mentioned earlier our best selling book, Working Effectively with Aboriginal Peoples™ is presently in its 3rd edition. Every participant at our training receives a copy to use as a continued reference.
9. A conducive facility, ideally a location that augments participants' understanding of Indigenous Peoples and issues.
We have found that by providing the training in the client’s preferred location participants can feel more comfortable as they are within their own environment. If it is preferred we can arrange for an alternate facility either in a neutral, central, or Indigenous community location.
10. Positive evalulations and references from previous participants.
At the end of each training session we provide an evaluation for participants to give us their input. The quotes posted above are a sample of the comments we have received from our evaluations. You can see the types of comments received and the clients we have trained by checking out our website testimonial page.
*The independent checklist was created by and originally posted on the Indigenous and Northern Development Canada website.
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Saying the wrong thing. That's what our learners tell us over and over again. Grab your free copy of "23 tips on what not to say or do" - 11,000+ others have downloaded this ebook. The tips are based on real life challenges and experiences from participants in our onsite and public training offerings, as well as Bob Joseph's personal and professional knowledge.