The Aboriginal Head Start Program at the Chiannou and Tiknagin Centres accompanies and supports the families that have preschool-age children, and prepare children to enter school. While respecting Aboriginal values and traditions, the program activities aim to improve the participants’ quality of life by favouring self-sufficiency as well as personal, cultural and social development.
• To promote in First Nations children a positive image of themselves, deepen their knowledge and experience of their community’s language and culture.
• Ensure that the program's management reflects the realities of Aboriginal communities in urban settings.
• In the frame of a holistic approach towards health, inform and support parents in the maintenance of their children's good health, by encouraging personal initiatives, collaboration and network referral.
• Encourage the staff and parents in the continuity of good daily eating habits favouring learning capacities, daily physical and intellectual development in children.
• Encourage and support parents in their role of primary educators and the extended families as they are the models for their children and their community.
• Inspire children with an enthusiasm for learning as well as fostering self-esteem and a sense of initiative, in an entertaining and pleasant atmosphere.
• Provide working tools for the personnel and bonify the individual and community knowledge and competences.
• Educational program for 2-to-3 year old and 4-year old children.
• Transportation services for children who want to attend the groups.
• Snacks for children.
• Workshops on parental skills including the “No one is perfect” program.
• Sports, cultural, social and leisure activities involving parents and children.
• Support program for parents.
• Information, prevention and awareness-raising sessions for parents.
• Parents-children groups for 0-12 months and 12-24 months.
• Communal kitchen for families, and purees for new-borns.
• Home visits.
Aboriginal children 6 years and younger and their parents, living in an urban environment in Val-d’Or and Senneterre.
Funded by Public Health Agency of Canada under the Aboriginal Head Start Program.
The Val-d’Or Native Friendship Centre has offered Aboriginal Head Start Program services in Val-d’Or (Tiknagin) and Senneterre (Chiannou) since 1997. The first children to have completed the entire program before going to kindergarten graduated in June 2002!
SCOPE OF ACTIVITIES
• Maximum of eight children per group.
• Transportation inside town limits.
• No long-term follow-ups; referrals if they are required.