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Evaluation of the Kts'iìhtła (“We Light the Fire”) Project: building resiliency and connections through strengths-based creative arts programming for Indigenous youth

Evaluation of the Kts'iìhtła (“We Light the Fire”) Project: building resiliency and... ORIGINAL RESEARCH ARTICLE Evaluation of the Ko` ts’iı`htła (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) Project: building resiliency and connections through strengths-based creative arts programming for Indigenous youth 1,2 1 3 4 Sahar Fanian , Stephanie K. Young , Mason Mantla *, Anita Daniels and 1,2 Susan Chatwood 1 2 Institute for Circumpolar Health Research, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada; Social & Behavioral Health Science Division, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Community Action Research Team, Tłı˛cho ˛ Government, Behchoko ` ˛˛ , Northwest Territories, Canada; Department of Community Programs, Tłı˛cho ˛˛ Government, Behchoko `˛ , Northwest Territories, Canada Background. The creative arts  music, film, visual arts, dance, theatre, spoken word, literature, among others are gradually being recognised as effective health promotion tools to empower, engage and improve the health and well-being in Indigenous youth communities. Arts-based programming has also had positive impacts in promoting health, mental wellness and resiliency amongst youth. However, often times the impacts and successes of such programming are not formally reported on, as reflected by the paucity of evaluations and reports in the literature. Objective. The objective of this study was to evaluate a creative arts workshop for Tłı ˛cho ˛ youth where youth explored critical community issues and found solutions together using the arts. We sought to identify the workshop’s areas of success and challenge. Ultimately, our goal is to develop a community-led, youth-driven model to strengthen resiliency through youth engagement in the arts in circumpolar regions. Design. Using a mixed-methods approach, we conducted observational field notes, focus groups, ques- tionnaires, and reflective practice to evaluate the workshop. Four youth and five facilitators participated in this process overall. Results. Youth reported gaining confidence and new skills, both artistic and personal. Many youth found the workshop to be engaging, enjoyable and culturally relevant. Youth expressed an interest in continuing their involvement with the arts and spreading their messages through art to other youth and others in their communities. Conclusions. Engagement and participation in the arts have the potential to build resiliency, form relationships, and stimulate discussions for community change amongst youth living in the North. Keywords: Dene; Indigenous; youth; evaluation; creative arts; resiliency; suicide prevention; health promotion; mixed methods; community-based research Responsible Editor: Kue Young, University of Alberta, Canada. *Correspondence to: Mason Mantla, Department of Community Programs, Tłı ˛cho ˛ Government, PO Box 412, Behchoko ` ˛ , Northwest Territories, Canada X0E 0Y0, Email: masonmantla@tlicho.com Received: 19 February 2015; Revised: 3 July 2015; Accepted: 3 July 2015; Published: 10 August 2015 he creative arts  music, film, visual arts, dance, to overcome language and cultural barriers. Interventions theatre, spoken word, literature, among others  using the creative arts have also provided evidence that Tare gradually being used as a way to empower, the arts can have positive public health implications. engage and improve the health and well-being of com- Stuckey and Nobel (1) conducted a review of the impacts munities (1,2). As McDonald et al. (2) have shown, the of engagement with the arts on healing and wellness. arts can be a powerful tool for community building and They found that music, visual arts, movement-based organising because of its’ potential to bring a community creative expression and creative writing can have positive together, bring attention to an issue, offer catharsis and effects on healing and several health outcomes, such as International Journal of Circumpolar Health 2015.# 2015 Sahar Fanian et al. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons 1 Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), allowing third parties to copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format and to remix, transform, and build upon the material for any purpose, even commercially, provided the original work is properly cited and states its license. Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 (page number not for citation purpose) Sahar Fanian et al. anxiety and stress reduction, mood improvement, in- The Ko˛ ts’iı`htła project: an overview Using the arts as a vehicle for empowering and building creased self-awareness, self-esteem, self-worth and identity, resiliency among youth was identified as an important ability to make meaning and to cope with challenging experiences. potential strategy by the authors of this article and youth The arts also play a significant role in Indigenous who attended a suicide prevention workshop in May of 2014 in Toronto. During the workshop, one of the cultures around the world (3). The Aboriginal Healing authors, MM, shared a film he directed in his community Foundation (AHF) has produced a report outlining the on the topic of youth suicide. The film was created with ways in which traditional culture and creative arts are the goal of engaging youth in his community and raising being used in community-based programmes to facilitate awareness about suicide in the community. Other In- healing and to further build collective strength among digenous youth at the workshop also spoke about their First Nations, Inuit and Metis peoples in Canada (4). The connections with different forms of art, such as music AHF provides a 3-way framework describing the inter- and the spoken word. The idea behind Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła was relationship between creative arts, culture and traditional generated during a breakout session where the authors healing and evidence that when given the freedom to and several contributors discussed the role art could play choose, many community-based healing programmes in building youth resiliency. At its inception, Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła overwhelmingly include the arts (4). was envisioned as a community-based and youth-led Arts-based interventions have been particularly suc- project. cessful among youth (46) and are increasingly being Since MM was a member of the Tłı ˛cho ˛ Community used to address several challenges faced by Indigenous Action Research Team (CART) in the Northwest Terri- youth (5). There are a number of community-led initia- tories (NWT), the project was built on existing capacity tives using arts-based approach in Indigenous communities. and established relationships with the community of For example, Blueprint for Life is a programme that uses Behchoko ` ˛ , NWT. Since 2009, CART was established hip hop to facilitate healing, build confidence, self- with the goal of turning research into action and pro- identity and self-esteem and foster strong relationships moting health among children and youth in the Tłı ˛cho ˛ among Inuit youth in the Arts (7). FOXY is an arts-based region. They evaluate community issues through partici- participatory action research project using creative arts patory research-based programming and arts-based ap- to empower teenage girls with sexual health decision- proaches to research. Guided by the Healing Wind making (5). Similarly, Taking Action uses creative arts Advisory Committee, a committee of Elders and com- as a tool for HIV prevention and awareness by training munity representatives, CART integrates knowledge of Indigenous youth to become leaders in their communities Tłıcho values and beliefs into their work at all stages of ˛ ˛ (6). These initiatives have highlighted all the ways in programming and research processes. Over the years, which the arts can promote dialogue and raise awareness CART have created a strong foundation in using arts- on various health issues, facilitate healing, build capacity, based participatory methods to engage youth voices, skills and confidence among youth, and strengthen build capacity and create healthy and supportive youth connections between youth and their communities at communities (9,10). large. The Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) project was a Many of the outcomes described above, such as con- 5-day creative arts and music workshop for youth which fidence, self-esteem, self-identity, healthy relationships, ran from August 11 to 15th, 2014, in the community of skill-building and empowerment, are important factors Behchoko ` ˛ , NWT, with the aim of empowering youth to in building resiliency (8). In the context of exposure to explore critical issues facing their community and their significant adversity, resilience can be understood as ‘‘both lives and to find solutions together using the arts. The the capacity of individuals to navigate their way to the project was hosted by the Tłı ˛cho ˛ CART in Behchoko ` ˛ and psychological, social, cultural, and physical resources originally stemmed from the need to address high rates that sustain their well-being, and their capacity individu- of suicide in northern Aboriginal communities. While ally and collectively to negotiate for these resources to be suicide prevention among youth was the original impetus provided in culturally meaningful ways’’ (8). Although for the project, the workshop took a strengths-based engaging in the creative arts has been linked to positive approach by focusing on empowering and building capa- effects on health in a variety of contexts (1), little has been city amongst youth using the creative arts. written about the potential role of the arts in building Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła aimed to build resilience by ensuring that resiliency. Thus, the intent of this article is to share the youth have ownership of the workshop and its outcomes. outcomes of an evaluation of Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła, a creative arts Youth were given the opportunity to identify topics or workshop for Tłıcho youth, to contribute to the growing ˛ ˛ issues they wanted to address based on what was body of literature linking the arts to resiliency among important to them. The project also focused on building youth. a culturally relevant space for youth to engage with the 2 Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 (page number not for citation purpose) Evaluation of the Ko `˛ ts’iı`htla (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) project creative arts by celebrating Tłı ˛cho ˛ culture and offering workshops led by Tłı ˛cho ˛ creative mentors. The Tłı ˛cho ˛ CART recruited Indigenous facilitators to deliver the programming, 3 of the 5 facilitators were Tłı ˛cho ˛ and from Behchoko ` ˛. During the workshop, participants were en- couraged to share their stories and took leadership roles in directing their focus for the creative art projects. Facilitators grounded their workshops on the principal of reciprocity and shared learning and dedicated time to share their personal stories with the participants. In doing so, this workshop created an open and safe space to share stories and promoted cultural relevancy through youth- Fig. 1. Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła goals. identified topics. Additionally, Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła responded to the need to im- prove availability, access, cultural-safety, quality and con- c. Develop youths’ artistic and personal skills, self- tinuity of mental wellness and addictions programming in confidence, self-expression, sense of identity and the NWT, a long-standing priority of the Government of overall well-being. the Northwest Territories (GNWT). Recently, the dearth d. Connect youth with positive role models and with one of prevention and early intervention programmes target- another. ing children and youth mental health and addictions issues was identified as one of the most critical and Values of Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła: persistent service gaps in the NWT (7). While supporting youth-led strengths-based mental wellness programming, a. Community-based Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła also shared many of the same community b. Youth-friendly wellness goals as the Tłı ˛cho ˛ Community Services Agency c. Strengths-based approach and those of the GNWT’s Mental Health and Addictions d. Rooted in Tłı ˛cho ˛ values and traditions Action Plan (7). These goals include engaging youth e. Respect and creating safe spaces communities in discussion of mental health and addic- f. Ownership, control, access and possession (OCAP) tions challenges, developing approaches to share best practices among communities and regions, developing The objectives of Ko ` ts’iı `htła: strategic communication plans to deliver ongoing mental health and addictions, stigma, suicide prevention and a. To provide a mentorship opportunity for youth to resiliency-related campaigns, and building community learn artistic and personal skills from local, Indigen- ous artists and from their peers. capacity for community-led initiatives to support mental b. To develop youths’ resiliency, confidence, self-expression wellness (7). and skill-set through music and creative arts. Thus, the overall goals of Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła were twofold: to c. To provide resources and a safe space for youth to engage and empower youth to explore critical issues in discuss pertinent issues in their communities and lives their communities and lives and to find solutions together and to find solutions together using the arts. using creative arts (art as vehicle for social change), and d. To share youth participants’ artwork and messages to build resiliency amongst youth and promote healthy with other youth in their community and around the minds, bodies and spirits through the arts (art as vehicle world, if they desired. for promoting healthier youth and communities). The e. To develop a community-led, youth-driven model for objectives included: (a) building confidence and perso- continued youth engagement in the arts in Behchoko ` ˛ nal/artistic skills among youth participants, (b) connect- and explore implications for circumpolar regions. ing youth with one another and to positive role models and (c) demonstrating to youth how art can be a way to Current study express oneself and to deal with various issues in our lives The goal of this study is to evaluate Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła and and communities (Fig. 1). identify successes, challenges and unexpected outcomes In doing so, the project aimed to: that occurred during the workshop. The present study describes our evaluation method, key findings and lessons a. Build on the collective and individual strengths of learned. Additionally, this study has catalysed the devel- youth. opment of community-oriented knowledge translation b. Provide an opportunity for youth to engage in the arts and to voice their thoughts/beliefs/emotions resources and toolkits to support creative arts program- using the arts. ming for Indigenous youth. Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 3 (page number not for citation purpose) Sahar Fanian et al. Method of artistic backgrounds and expertise, which included spoken word, sound production and design, film, photo- Partnership graphy, multimedia arts, jewellery making and visual arts. The evaluation of Ko ` ts’iı `htła was a collaborative, community- All 5 facilitators participated in the evaluation. based research project led through a partnership between Evaluation framework the Tłı ˛cho ˛ CART and the Institute for Circumpolar Health An evaluation framework was developed to identify the (ICHR). Two research assistants from ICHR and the social successes and challenges associated with the programme, programme coordinator with CART developed the evalua- ways, outcomes and impacts can be increased, and to tion framework and tools and assisted with data analysis. understand the benefits participants received from being The research assistants from ICHR supported workshop involved in the creative arts and collaborative projects. planning, data collection and analysis. All participants These evaluation findings are intended for use by com- within the partnership participated in the authorship of munity governments, youth organisations, and programme the article. coordinators to provide insight and improve future youth- Participants driven, strengths-based and creative-arts programming. Youth were recruited to participate in the workshop Correspondingly, the evaluation framework and tools through many ways: Tł˛ ıcho ˛ CART staff, in-person presen- aimed to capture both process (evaluating the activities tations, promotional posters (Fig. 2), word of mouth, and events that occur as part of implementation, what are radio and social media. Nine youth participated in the the strengths and weaknesses of day-to-day operations, workshop overall, with an average of 56 youth per day. how can these processes be improved) and outcome Several of the same youth came consistently for all 5 days, (evaluating the extent to which programme goals and and other youth were introduced to the programme mid- outcomes have been obtained) objectives. In doing so, the week from their friends who were already participating. framework details the evaluation objectives, respon- All youth were Tłı ˛cho ˛ and from the community of dent(s), indicators, methods and timing of data collec- tion. The evaluation framework is described in detail in Behchoko ` ˛ , NT. The youths’ ages ranged from 13 to 22; Appendix A. there were 4 females and 5 males overall. Five youth were unavailable to complete the youth feedback questionnaire Data collection because they did not attend the last day of the workshop. Programme evaluation was integrated throughout the Four youth completed the questionnaire, whose ages entire workshop. Observational data were collected every ranged from 14 to 22; there were 2 females and 2 males day by recording youth attendance numbers, different overall. activities youth engaged in that day and comments from Five Indigenous artist facilitators delivered the creative conversations facilitators and research staff had with arts programming. Each facilitator brought a diverse set different youth about their art and the art mediums they were working with. At the end of each day, a focus group was conducted to explore youth and facilitators impres- sions about the day and their experiences. Field notes were taken, and at the end of each day facilitators wrote a reflection. Two sets of questionnaires were developed, one for youth participants and one for artist facilitators. Both questionnaires were administered and collected at the end of the workshop. The youth questionnaire assessed 6 main areas: (a) recruitment, (b) satisfaction; (c) areas of success and areas in need of improvement; (d) cultural relevancy and appropriateness; (e) personal impact and (f) desire to continue engaging in the arts. The facilitator question- naire assessed 6 main areas: (a) satisfaction; (b) areas of success and areas in need of improvement; (c) challenges encountered; (d) experience working with youth; (e) overall impressions and (f) continuing youth engagement and capacity building in the arts. Sample questions from the youth and facilitator questionnaire can be found in Tables I and II, respectively. Finally, practice and field notes were incorporated to support the monitoring and evaluation of the workshop and contribute to organisa- Fig. 2. Promotional poster for the Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła Workshop. tional learning and capacity development. 4 Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 (page number not for citation purpose) Evaluation of the Ko `˛ ts’iı`htla (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) project Table I. Sample questions from youth participant feedback questionnaire Evaluation objective Sample questions To understand what elements of the workshop could be Did the workshop meet your expectations? Why or why not? improved What parts of the workshop did you dislike or feel could be improved? Why? What would you have liked to learn more about? To understand whether the workshop had a positive impact Did you find the workshop fun? on youth How has this workshop impacted you? Would you do this workshop again in the future? Why? Would you like to stay connected with the people in the workshop? What do you feel you have gained from the workshop? To understand appropriateness of workshop Did you feel comfortable working and speaking with the facilitators? The other youth? Why or why not? Did you feel the workshop was culturally relevant? To understand youths’ interest in continuing art initiatives Would you like to share your artwork and music with others? If so how? and sharing of their art Data analysis c. Data Source (‘‘using multiple data sources or respon- All data, including the participant and facilitator ques- dent groups’’): Three perspectives were represented in tionnaires, focus group notes, reflective practice notes the data analysis (programme coordinators, facilita- and field notes, were de-identified, cleaned, transcribed tors and participants). and entered into Microsoft Word. Data were analysed A ‘‘convergence-coding matrix’’ was created to display using an adapted version of the triangulation protocol the themes that emerged from each data source on 1 main described by Farmer et al. (11). Two researchers con- page using Microsoft Excel. Findings were coded for ducted a separate qualitative thematic analysis of each agreement, partial agreement, silence or dissonance. Two data source respectively. Three types of triangulation researchers then assessed the findings for convergence, were used to analyse the data: completeness and compared the level of agreement a. Multiple Investigators (‘‘involving 2 or more research- between researchers. The emerging themes were discussed ers in the analysis’’): Two researchers independently and agreed upon by 2 researchers. One researcher analysed the data sources and compared results. structured the main findings into groups, which were b. Methodical (‘‘using more than one research method reviewed and agreed upon by all authors. or data collection technique’’): Results were analysed Results from various methods of data collection (question- The data were compiled and grouped into the perspec- naires, focus group notes, reflective practice notes and field notes). tives of the youth, facilitators and art outputs. Table II. Sample questions from the facilitator feedback questionnaire Evaluation objective Sample questions To understand what elements of the workshop were What do you consider some successful components of the workshop? successful and what could be improved Why? How do you feel the workshop could be improved? What challenges did you encounter during the workshop? How did you overcome them? To understand whether the workshop had a positive impact From your perspective, what impact did the workshop have on the youth on youth participants? What do you feel was accomplished or gained from the workshop? To understand ways to continue arts-programming and Would you help with this workshop again in the future? If so, why and in share the art beyond the scope of this workshop what capacity? What are some ways we can help the youth participants to continue to use the arts, and reach out to other youth using arts/music Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 5 (page number not for citation purpose) Sahar Fanian et al. Youth perspectives identified components of the workshop that could be Youth were recruited to join the workshop through a improved for the future. Facilitators and youth partici- variety of strategies. The youth participants reported pants both said that having more youth participants hearing about the workshop either through posters, word in attendance and a balanced student: facilitator ratio of mouth or speaking directly with CART members. The would have strengthened the success of the workshop. youth participants gave different reasons for wanting to Facilitators also suggested focusing in on 1 or 2 art forms join Ko ` ts’iı `htła including, an interest in learning more and a couple of finished products, which could have about the arts, like film and media, and to improve their allowed for a more in-depth learning experience and an artistic skills. Others gave reasons such as having friends easier time discussing and producing a final piece of art. who joined, wanting to get out of the house and do More structure and pre-planning sessions also could something or wanting to have fun. One youth participant have helped with this. A couple of the facilitators also wrote, ‘‘I joined because I wanted something to do, to get suggested establishing a theme for the final art products out of the house and participate.’’ The majority of youth on the first day; however, while this may have helped participants said that the workshop met their expecta- focus the workshop activities, youth participants may not tions; however, some commented that they wished more have felt comfortable on the first day discussing certain people joined. When asked what components of the sensitive topics. Other suggestions included training faci- workshop they liked, youth participants wrote about litators on the local history and culture in preparation for having had the chance to learn and engage with different the workshop and also reducing the amount of music forms of art, like photography, painting, singing, filming, and recording equipment so as not to intimidate the working on the music video, etc., as assets. They com- youth from trying it. To further improve the workshop by mented on how it was fun to take part in and new for making the activities even more youth and community them. When asked about components of the workshop led, facilitators recommend sharing the art products at a they did not like, responses were minimal. However, some community event (if the youth express an interest to do identified wanting to see more youth involved in the so and feel it is appropriate). Furthermore, they stressed workshop. Many of the youth participants also said that the importance of ensuring that youth have access to they wanted to pursuit arts after completion of the supplies, necessary equipment and space upon comple- workshop. Some were interested in learning more about tion of the workshop so that youth can continue to or continuing street art, while 3 out of the 4 youth who develop their interests in the arts of their choice. responded to the survey wanted to pursue film. All youth Overall, facilitators found the workshop to be a posi- participants also found the workshop to be fun and tive experience. They commented that not only did par- engaging, citing being provided with food, meeting new ticipating in the workshop build confidence in themselves people and avoiding boredom as reasons for why they in their new role as a facilitator, they also recognised thought the workshop was worthwhile. Three out of four striking changes in confidence among the youth partici- participants said that they wanted to take part in more pants. One facilitator wrote, ‘‘the workshop seemed to workshops like Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła and suggested having art and increase the students’ confidence in the art forms and music programmes after school in the community. Most overall personality, as many of them came out of their also found the workshop to be culturally relevant and felt shell by the end of the week.’’ In their conversations with comfortable working with the facilitators. Some of the the youth participants, facilitators also found that youth female youth participants, however, pointed out that they commented on how the workshop taught them new skills, only felt comfortable working with the female facilitators. and provided new possibilities and opportunities for All of the youth said that they gained something positive them to explore the arts in the future. Finally, facilitators from the workshop, responses were mainly from making talked about the relationships formed between themselves new friends and learning new art skills. All of the youth and the youth participants as being one of the most expressed a strong desire to share and disseminate their positive components of the workshop. artwork. Art products Facilitator perspectives By the end of the 5-day workshop, youth participants and Facilitators completed an open-ended questionnaire and facilitators collaboratively created a mural (Fig. 3), music took part in debrief sessions following each day of the video and short film, each representing different themes, workshop. Qualitative findings from the facilitators challenges and hopes discussed by the youth. The process provided useful feedback on the process and functioning involved brainstorming all together or in small groups of the workshop as a whole, as well as its success and what they wanted represented in their art and how they challenges. While the facilitators found the workshop wanted it represented. The process of brainstorming to be successful in achieving its goals, in the products brought up significant points of discussion for the youth made and importantly, in the relationships formed, many participants, allowing them to express their concerns, 6 Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 (page number not for citation purpose) Evaluation of the Ko `˛ ts’iı`htla (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) project Fig. 3. Workshop facilitators on the last day of the workshop in front of the collaborative mural that the youth created with workshop facilitator Charlotte Overvold. Photo credit: Sahar Fanian. hopes and visions for their community and lives. Pictures and traditions (11) of ‘‘being strong like 2 people,’’ where from the music video production and lyrics for the music ‘‘young people are strong physically and spiritually; video can be found in Appendix B. determined yet cautious; able to read the environment for survival,’’ ‘‘work as part of a community,’’ and share Discussion and learn on the land (p. 13). Youth participants and Overall, we found that youth participants had a positive facilitators also saw the workshop to be successful experience participating in Ko ` ts’iı `htła because of 4 main because it was led by Indigenous youth artists, some of factors: they developed new skills, had positive interac- whom were from the community of Behchoko ` ˛. tions with facilitators, found the workshop to be cultu- All of the participants found that the workshop to rally relevant and enjoyable and used the arts to talk be fun and enjoyable, and many said that they looked about community issues and visions for change. All of the forward to coming to the workshop each day. We ob- youth participants identified having gained new skills in served that youth took pride in their individual and the arts and all expressed an interest in continuing and collective artwork, such as the music video, short film building on their artistic skills after completion of the and mural, and expressed an interest in sharing their workshop. Youth gained skills in visual arts, music and artistic products with other youth and others in their music production, film-making, photography, song writ- community. Finally, the workshop functioned as a catalyst ing and spoken word. for discussing issues and visions in their community and Facilitators also found that several of the youth lives. One-on-one and in groups over the course of the showed a noticeable increase in confidence over the course workshop, the youth participants began to share about of the workshop, with many transitioning from very shy challenges such as alcohol use, cyber bullying and suicide to confident by the end of the week. A second important and employment, as well as positive aspects of their success of Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła, as identified by participants and community and visions for their own and collective future facilitators, was the positive interactions and relation- through the artwork and in conversations. This was dis- ships formed between the youth, and between the youth played through their collaborative music video and and facilitators. Many of the youth participants had the mural, which participants hoped others in the community opportunity to spend one-on-one time with the facil- would see and would stimulate conversation about itators, giving them a chance to build on their artistic challenges, strengths and changes in the community as skills but also to share their thoughts, concerns and a creative and inspiring method of knowledge translating aspirations and to hear facilitators’ advice and personal and sharing. stories. There were opportunities for bonding, learning While we are still in the process of arranging for youth and sharing between the youth participants and facil- participants to display and discuss their work at the itators. Youth participants also found the workshop to be upcoming Tłı ˛cho ˛ CART’s Annual Youth Conference, culturally relevant, because it was based on Tłı ˛cho ˛ values our experience from Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła has shown us that the Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 7 (page number not for citation purpose) Sahar Fanian et al. arts have the potential to build resiliency, form relation- driven’’ (product has a value, e.g. mural will be put up in the community or music video will be shared with ships and stimulate discussions for community change other youth online). amongst youth in the North. We also created a community- friendly version of this report to share with Tłı ˛cho ˛ Limitations communities and others interested in developing or There are a number of limitations to our results. First, running community-based creative arts programming Ko ` ts’iı `htła participants were self-selected. Only youth for youth in their own community. Positioning the project who were interested in creative arts or were available for within the community’s health authority and building off the week would sign up to participate. Only 4 youth the established strengths of CART promoted project completed the full questionnaire, limiting our ability to sustainability. generalise results to the whole group. With such a small sample size, it is difficult to make any firm conclusions. Lessons learned However, we did get input from youth through other means from the debrief and focus group sessions, from a. Flexibility is essential. Each day the structure or agenda observational data and field notes, as well as from all for the day should be re-evaluated and adjusted facilitators, which has provided us with more data than accordingly depending on the number of youth parti- just the questionnaires. Second, youth who attended the cipants, available facilitators, youths’ interests, space workshop in some cases were variable, with some youth and facility restrictions and other circumstances. dropping out within the first couple days while others b. It is important to balance structure and non- joined later in the week. As a result, we do not have structured time throughout the workshop, providing consistent data from all youth and are missing data from ample opportunities for youth to collaborate and those who dropped out early as to the reasons why they engage in a new art form art, while also providing the did not continue. Although others in the group have space and time for youth to autonomously choose informed us that work schedules, particularly mining what suits their needs. shift work, may be responsible for the gaps in attendance. c. It is as important to facilitate group building and cohesiveness as it is to facilitate individual growth. Next steps However, group activities, such as sharing circles, Youth expressed an interest in continuing their engage- cannot be ‘‘forced,’’ they often happen organically ment with the arts and desire to share their messages with over the week, as participants become more comfor- other youth and others in their community through their table with one another. artwork. They shared their views that the music video d. It is important to create a safe space by establishing and film can be used as a way to connect with youth ground rules as a group. This gives youth participants across the world and to establish shared experiences, the opportunity to share, if they choose to, and support and empowerment. Participants had a strong feel safe about it while also reminding the group to desire to share their work online through well-known respect the confidentiality of others. media and social-media websites, as well as to share their e. Youth participants should have ownership over their work with the community as a whole through a commu- art. They choose what, how, where and when they nity showcase or event. Thus, we are presently working wish to showcase their artwork. with the youth and some key partners to discuss how f. The workshop should have ample opportunities for their artistic achievements can be shared with others. In youth collaboration and sharing of talents and skills. particular, some of the art products will be featured at the g. Artist facilitators should not only be skilled in their upcoming Tłıcho CART’s Annual Youth Conference. We respective art medium but also have some shared ˛ ˛ are also working with community partners to see how ground or experience with the youth. h. Depending on the number of youth and their inter- we can integrate art activities into existing community ests, it may be worth selecting only a few types of art initiatives. The goal of Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła is to be a community- that met the needs and interests of youth participants led and youth-driven initiative to continue supporting rather than having too many activities going on. creative art opportunities for youth in circumpolar i. Ensure there is an appropriate ratio of facilitators to communities. youth (approximately 1 facilitator per 34 youth). Conclusion j. Create a safe, culturally relevant, respectful and Evaluation results from Ko ` ts’iı `htła, a pilot creative arts creative environment for youth participants. ˛ and music workshop held in the summer of 2014 for k. It is important to determine what the workshop goals and objectives are and whether the project will be youth in Behchoko ` ˛ , have shown the potential for art to be ‘‘process-driven’’ (the process of making the art has used as a medium for building resiliency, forming positive benefits and is valuable in and of itself) or ‘‘product- relationships and stimulating discussions on community 8 Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 (page number not for citation purpose) Evaluation of the Ko `˛ ts’iı`htla (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) project suicide prevention (Grant number: TCS-134174) and the change among Tłı ˛cho ˛ youth and shows potential for CIHR Signature Initiative in Community-Based Primary Indigenous youth in Northern Canada. As this was a Health Care (Grant number TT6-128271). The authors pilot community project with a small number of partici- declare no conflicts of interest. pants, we encourage others to continue examining the role of creative arts as a tool for social change among References youth communities and share findings. By substantiating the existing literature on arts-based health promotion 1. Stuckey HL, Nobel J. The connection between art, healing, programmes for youth, we hope that these results can be and public health: a review of current literature. Am J Public Health. 2010;100:25463. used to support the sustainability of arts-based pro- 2. McDonald S, Viega M. Hear our voices: a music therapy grammes for Indigenous youth. Next steps will involve songwriting program and the message of the Little Saints helping to build a knowledge exchange platform for through the medium of rap. In: Hadley S, Yancy G, editors. Ko ` ts’iı `htła youth to share their artwork with others with Therapeutic uses of rap and hip-hop. New York: Routledge; the hope to stimulate youth-led discussions within and 2011. p. 15371. 3. Kipuri N. State of the World’s Indigenous peoples. New York: across communities in the circumpolar regions. United Nations; 2009. p. 5281. 4. Archibald L, Dewar J, Reid C, Stevens V. Dancing, singing, Acknowledgements painting, and speaking the healing story: healing through creative arts. Ottawa: Aboriginal Healing Foundation; 2012. The authors thank several individuals who generously shared their 5. ArcticFOXY. Who We Are; 2014 [cited 2014 Feb 8]. Available time, passion and creative expertise as artist facilitators: George from: http://arcticfoxy.com/ Bailey, Bonnie Fornier, Tiffany Harrington, Casey Koyczan, Travis 6. EMPOWER. 2010 [updated 2015; cited 2015 Feb 17]. Available Mercerdi and Charlotte Overvold. The authors thank the Chief from: http://www.empoweryouth.info Jimmy Brueanu School for providing us with the space to hold the 7. Leafloor S. Therapeutic outreach through Bboying (break- workshop. The authors also acknowledge and thank all the youth dancing) in Canada’s arctic and first nations communities: participants for collaborating, sharing their knowledge and learning Social work through hip-hop. In: Hadley S, Yancy G, editors. alongside us throughout the Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła project. Finally, this work Therapeutic uses of ap and hip-hop. New York: Routledge; would not have been possible without the support from the Tłıcho ˛ ˛ 2012. p. 12952. Government, the Tłı ˛cho ˛ Community Action Research Team, the 8. Ungar M. What is resilience? 2011 [cited 2015 Apr 20]. Available University of Toronto Dalla Lana School of Public Health and the from: http://resilienceresearch.org/about-the-rrc/resilience/14- Institute for Circumpolar Health Research. what-is-resilience 9. Edwards KE, Gibson N, Martin J, Mitchell S, Andersson N. Conflict of interest and funding Impact of community-based interventions on condom use in The Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) Creative Arts and the Tlicho region of Northwest Territories, Canada. BMC Music workshop was funded by the Youth Contribution Health Serv Res. 2011;11(Suppl 2):S9. Fund through the Department of Municipal and Commu- 10. Hopkins S. The Tłı ˛cho ˛ Community Action Research Team: nity Affairs at the Government of the Northwest Territories. place-based conversation starters. Pimatisiwin. 2012;10: Funding for workshop coordination, evaluation, knowledge 195210. translation and dissemination of the workshop materials was 11. Farmer T, Robinson K, Elliott SJ, Eyles J. Developing and implementing a triangulation protocol for qualitative health provided by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research research. Qual Health Res. 2006;16:37794. (CIHR) Team Grant: Circumpolar, wellness, resilience, and Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 9 (page number not for citation purpose) Sahar Fanian et al. Appendix A: Evaluation framework Target population/ Timing of data Evaluation objectives respondents Indicators Data collection methods collection To understand how youth heard Youth Successful method(s) of Questionnaire Last day of about Ko `˛ ts’iı`htła and why they participants recruitment; youths’ initial Focus groups workshop decided to join motivation for participating At the end of each day To understand what elements of the Youth Number of participants Overall attendance and Attendance workshop youth and facilitators participants and Impressions of the workshop day- attendance at specific each day liked and what elements they felt facilitators to-day activities; overall satisfaction activities Last day of could be improved with workshop; elements liked/ Questionnaire workshop disliked; level of engagement during Focus groups, debriefing Throughout each activity sessions, reflective workshop practice notes, field notes To understand whether the workshop Youth Self-assessed feedback on cultural Questionnaire Throughout was culturally relevant participants and relevancy by youth participants and Focus groups, debriefing the workshop facilitators facilitators; sessions, reflective Protocols (asking for permission and practice notes informed consent, reciprocity), Partnerships (relational practice and collaborative problem solving), Personal knowledge (self-location and sharing of personal experience), Process (negotiating goals and activities), Positive purpose (building on strengths, meaningful experience for participants) To understand appropriateness of Youth Level of comfort between facilitators Questionnaire Last day of workshop participants and and youth; level of comfort amongst Focus groups, debriefing workshop facilitators youth participants sessions, reflective Throughout practice notes, and field workshop notes To understand youths’ and Youth Future interest and intentions to be Questionnaire Last day of facilitators’ intentions to engage participants and involved in the arts and/or Ko `˛ ts’iı`htła Focus groups, debriefing workshop with the arts and/or future art facilitators art initiatives sessions, reflective Throughout workshops after this pilot practice notes workshop workshop To understand whether the workshop Youth Level of positive influence of the Focus groups, debriefing Throughout had a positive impact on youth participants and programme; Skills, confidence, self- sessions, field notes, workshop facilitators esteem, positive relationships, etc. reflective practice notes Last day of gained; Self-reported learning new Questionnaire workshop skills related to creative arts; Self- reported positive influence from opportunities to collaborate with other youth/Aboriginal artists To understand youths’ interest in Youth Interest and level of enthusiasm for Questionnaire and focus Last day of continuing art initiatives and participants and sharing work and continuing art groups workshop sharing of their art beyond the facilitators initiatives like Ko `˛ ts’iı`htła scope of this workshop 10 Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 (page number not for citation purpose) Evaluation of the Ko `˛ ts’iı`htla (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) project Appendix B: Pictures of the music video production and lyrics for the music video We Write the Future Lyrics to ‘‘We Write the Future’’ Chorus: We write the future x2 I’m dealin’ with my demons on the daily but it’s not enough to drown me in this storm when the waters in the sea get rough Lookin’ down below I’m searching’ for a dash of clarity But smouldering’ in flames my fears clash with sincerity Chorus We compose the future but at times we stuck in writers block Obstacles be in my way when I’m racin’ against the clock Darkness breathing down my neck Close enough for me to touch Reachin’ out for courage cause alone this is a bit too much. A thousand years I’ve been frozen in perpetual paralysis But my visions become clearer under closer analysis I realize I’m the only obstacle in my way so now listen to me closely to hear what I’m bout to say Chorus Recording components of the music for ‘‘We Write the Future’’. Photo credit: Sahar Fanian. Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 11 (page number not for citation purpose) Sahar Fanian et al. Youth and facilitators in action, shooting scenes for the music video We Write the Future. Photo credit: Sahar Fanian. 12 Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 (page number not for citation purpose) http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Circumpolar Health Taylor & Francis

Evaluation of the Kts'iìhtła (“We Light the Fire”) Project: building resiliency and connections through strengths-based creative arts programming for Indigenous youth

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© 2015 Sahar Fanian et al.
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Abstract

ORIGINAL RESEARCH ARTICLE Evaluation of the Ko` ts’iı`htła (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) Project: building resiliency and connections through strengths-based creative arts programming for Indigenous youth 1,2 1 3 4 Sahar Fanian , Stephanie K. Young , Mason Mantla *, Anita Daniels and 1,2 Susan Chatwood 1 2 Institute for Circumpolar Health Research, Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada; Social & Behavioral Health Science Division, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Community Action Research Team, Tłı˛cho ˛ Government, Behchoko ` ˛˛ , Northwest Territories, Canada; Department of Community Programs, Tłı˛cho ˛˛ Government, Behchoko `˛ , Northwest Territories, Canada Background. The creative arts  music, film, visual arts, dance, theatre, spoken word, literature, among others are gradually being recognised as effective health promotion tools to empower, engage and improve the health and well-being in Indigenous youth communities. Arts-based programming has also had positive impacts in promoting health, mental wellness and resiliency amongst youth. However, often times the impacts and successes of such programming are not formally reported on, as reflected by the paucity of evaluations and reports in the literature. Objective. The objective of this study was to evaluate a creative arts workshop for Tłı ˛cho ˛ youth where youth explored critical community issues and found solutions together using the arts. We sought to identify the workshop’s areas of success and challenge. Ultimately, our goal is to develop a community-led, youth-driven model to strengthen resiliency through youth engagement in the arts in circumpolar regions. Design. Using a mixed-methods approach, we conducted observational field notes, focus groups, ques- tionnaires, and reflective practice to evaluate the workshop. Four youth and five facilitators participated in this process overall. Results. Youth reported gaining confidence and new skills, both artistic and personal. Many youth found the workshop to be engaging, enjoyable and culturally relevant. Youth expressed an interest in continuing their involvement with the arts and spreading their messages through art to other youth and others in their communities. Conclusions. Engagement and participation in the arts have the potential to build resiliency, form relationships, and stimulate discussions for community change amongst youth living in the North. Keywords: Dene; Indigenous; youth; evaluation; creative arts; resiliency; suicide prevention; health promotion; mixed methods; community-based research Responsible Editor: Kue Young, University of Alberta, Canada. *Correspondence to: Mason Mantla, Department of Community Programs, Tłı ˛cho ˛ Government, PO Box 412, Behchoko ` ˛ , Northwest Territories, Canada X0E 0Y0, Email: masonmantla@tlicho.com Received: 19 February 2015; Revised: 3 July 2015; Accepted: 3 July 2015; Published: 10 August 2015 he creative arts  music, film, visual arts, dance, to overcome language and cultural barriers. Interventions theatre, spoken word, literature, among others  using the creative arts have also provided evidence that Tare gradually being used as a way to empower, the arts can have positive public health implications. engage and improve the health and well-being of com- Stuckey and Nobel (1) conducted a review of the impacts munities (1,2). As McDonald et al. (2) have shown, the of engagement with the arts on healing and wellness. arts can be a powerful tool for community building and They found that music, visual arts, movement-based organising because of its’ potential to bring a community creative expression and creative writing can have positive together, bring attention to an issue, offer catharsis and effects on healing and several health outcomes, such as International Journal of Circumpolar Health 2015.# 2015 Sahar Fanian et al. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons 1 Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), allowing third parties to copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format and to remix, transform, and build upon the material for any purpose, even commercially, provided the original work is properly cited and states its license. Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 (page number not for citation purpose) Sahar Fanian et al. anxiety and stress reduction, mood improvement, in- The Ko˛ ts’iı`htła project: an overview Using the arts as a vehicle for empowering and building creased self-awareness, self-esteem, self-worth and identity, resiliency among youth was identified as an important ability to make meaning and to cope with challenging experiences. potential strategy by the authors of this article and youth The arts also play a significant role in Indigenous who attended a suicide prevention workshop in May of 2014 in Toronto. During the workshop, one of the cultures around the world (3). The Aboriginal Healing authors, MM, shared a film he directed in his community Foundation (AHF) has produced a report outlining the on the topic of youth suicide. The film was created with ways in which traditional culture and creative arts are the goal of engaging youth in his community and raising being used in community-based programmes to facilitate awareness about suicide in the community. Other In- healing and to further build collective strength among digenous youth at the workshop also spoke about their First Nations, Inuit and Metis peoples in Canada (4). The connections with different forms of art, such as music AHF provides a 3-way framework describing the inter- and the spoken word. The idea behind Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła was relationship between creative arts, culture and traditional generated during a breakout session where the authors healing and evidence that when given the freedom to and several contributors discussed the role art could play choose, many community-based healing programmes in building youth resiliency. At its inception, Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła overwhelmingly include the arts (4). was envisioned as a community-based and youth-led Arts-based interventions have been particularly suc- project. cessful among youth (46) and are increasingly being Since MM was a member of the Tłı ˛cho ˛ Community used to address several challenges faced by Indigenous Action Research Team (CART) in the Northwest Terri- youth (5). There are a number of community-led initia- tories (NWT), the project was built on existing capacity tives using arts-based approach in Indigenous communities. and established relationships with the community of For example, Blueprint for Life is a programme that uses Behchoko ` ˛ , NWT. Since 2009, CART was established hip hop to facilitate healing, build confidence, self- with the goal of turning research into action and pro- identity and self-esteem and foster strong relationships moting health among children and youth in the Tłı ˛cho ˛ among Inuit youth in the Arts (7). FOXY is an arts-based region. They evaluate community issues through partici- participatory action research project using creative arts patory research-based programming and arts-based ap- to empower teenage girls with sexual health decision- proaches to research. Guided by the Healing Wind making (5). Similarly, Taking Action uses creative arts Advisory Committee, a committee of Elders and com- as a tool for HIV prevention and awareness by training munity representatives, CART integrates knowledge of Indigenous youth to become leaders in their communities Tłıcho values and beliefs into their work at all stages of ˛ ˛ (6). These initiatives have highlighted all the ways in programming and research processes. Over the years, which the arts can promote dialogue and raise awareness CART have created a strong foundation in using arts- on various health issues, facilitate healing, build capacity, based participatory methods to engage youth voices, skills and confidence among youth, and strengthen build capacity and create healthy and supportive youth connections between youth and their communities at communities (9,10). large. The Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) project was a Many of the outcomes described above, such as con- 5-day creative arts and music workshop for youth which fidence, self-esteem, self-identity, healthy relationships, ran from August 11 to 15th, 2014, in the community of skill-building and empowerment, are important factors Behchoko ` ˛ , NWT, with the aim of empowering youth to in building resiliency (8). In the context of exposure to explore critical issues facing their community and their significant adversity, resilience can be understood as ‘‘both lives and to find solutions together using the arts. The the capacity of individuals to navigate their way to the project was hosted by the Tłı ˛cho ˛ CART in Behchoko ` ˛ and psychological, social, cultural, and physical resources originally stemmed from the need to address high rates that sustain their well-being, and their capacity individu- of suicide in northern Aboriginal communities. While ally and collectively to negotiate for these resources to be suicide prevention among youth was the original impetus provided in culturally meaningful ways’’ (8). Although for the project, the workshop took a strengths-based engaging in the creative arts has been linked to positive approach by focusing on empowering and building capa- effects on health in a variety of contexts (1), little has been city amongst youth using the creative arts. written about the potential role of the arts in building Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła aimed to build resilience by ensuring that resiliency. Thus, the intent of this article is to share the youth have ownership of the workshop and its outcomes. outcomes of an evaluation of Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła, a creative arts Youth were given the opportunity to identify topics or workshop for Tłıcho youth, to contribute to the growing ˛ ˛ issues they wanted to address based on what was body of literature linking the arts to resiliency among important to them. The project also focused on building youth. a culturally relevant space for youth to engage with the 2 Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 (page number not for citation purpose) Evaluation of the Ko `˛ ts’iı`htla (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) project creative arts by celebrating Tłı ˛cho ˛ culture and offering workshops led by Tłı ˛cho ˛ creative mentors. The Tłı ˛cho ˛ CART recruited Indigenous facilitators to deliver the programming, 3 of the 5 facilitators were Tłı ˛cho ˛ and from Behchoko ` ˛. During the workshop, participants were en- couraged to share their stories and took leadership roles in directing their focus for the creative art projects. Facilitators grounded their workshops on the principal of reciprocity and shared learning and dedicated time to share their personal stories with the participants. In doing so, this workshop created an open and safe space to share stories and promoted cultural relevancy through youth- Fig. 1. Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła goals. identified topics. Additionally, Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła responded to the need to im- prove availability, access, cultural-safety, quality and con- c. Develop youths’ artistic and personal skills, self- tinuity of mental wellness and addictions programming in confidence, self-expression, sense of identity and the NWT, a long-standing priority of the Government of overall well-being. the Northwest Territories (GNWT). Recently, the dearth d. Connect youth with positive role models and with one of prevention and early intervention programmes target- another. ing children and youth mental health and addictions issues was identified as one of the most critical and Values of Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła: persistent service gaps in the NWT (7). While supporting youth-led strengths-based mental wellness programming, a. Community-based Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła also shared many of the same community b. Youth-friendly wellness goals as the Tłı ˛cho ˛ Community Services Agency c. Strengths-based approach and those of the GNWT’s Mental Health and Addictions d. Rooted in Tłı ˛cho ˛ values and traditions Action Plan (7). These goals include engaging youth e. Respect and creating safe spaces communities in discussion of mental health and addic- f. Ownership, control, access and possession (OCAP) tions challenges, developing approaches to share best practices among communities and regions, developing The objectives of Ko ` ts’iı `htła: strategic communication plans to deliver ongoing mental health and addictions, stigma, suicide prevention and a. To provide a mentorship opportunity for youth to resiliency-related campaigns, and building community learn artistic and personal skills from local, Indigen- ous artists and from their peers. capacity for community-led initiatives to support mental b. To develop youths’ resiliency, confidence, self-expression wellness (7). and skill-set through music and creative arts. Thus, the overall goals of Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła were twofold: to c. To provide resources and a safe space for youth to engage and empower youth to explore critical issues in discuss pertinent issues in their communities and lives their communities and lives and to find solutions together and to find solutions together using the arts. using creative arts (art as vehicle for social change), and d. To share youth participants’ artwork and messages to build resiliency amongst youth and promote healthy with other youth in their community and around the minds, bodies and spirits through the arts (art as vehicle world, if they desired. for promoting healthier youth and communities). The e. To develop a community-led, youth-driven model for objectives included: (a) building confidence and perso- continued youth engagement in the arts in Behchoko ` ˛ nal/artistic skills among youth participants, (b) connect- and explore implications for circumpolar regions. ing youth with one another and to positive role models and (c) demonstrating to youth how art can be a way to Current study express oneself and to deal with various issues in our lives The goal of this study is to evaluate Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła and and communities (Fig. 1). identify successes, challenges and unexpected outcomes In doing so, the project aimed to: that occurred during the workshop. The present study describes our evaluation method, key findings and lessons a. Build on the collective and individual strengths of learned. Additionally, this study has catalysed the devel- youth. opment of community-oriented knowledge translation b. Provide an opportunity for youth to engage in the arts and to voice their thoughts/beliefs/emotions resources and toolkits to support creative arts program- using the arts. ming for Indigenous youth. Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 3 (page number not for citation purpose) Sahar Fanian et al. Method of artistic backgrounds and expertise, which included spoken word, sound production and design, film, photo- Partnership graphy, multimedia arts, jewellery making and visual arts. The evaluation of Ko ` ts’iı `htła was a collaborative, community- All 5 facilitators participated in the evaluation. based research project led through a partnership between Evaluation framework the Tłı ˛cho ˛ CART and the Institute for Circumpolar Health An evaluation framework was developed to identify the (ICHR). Two research assistants from ICHR and the social successes and challenges associated with the programme, programme coordinator with CART developed the evalua- ways, outcomes and impacts can be increased, and to tion framework and tools and assisted with data analysis. understand the benefits participants received from being The research assistants from ICHR supported workshop involved in the creative arts and collaborative projects. planning, data collection and analysis. All participants These evaluation findings are intended for use by com- within the partnership participated in the authorship of munity governments, youth organisations, and programme the article. coordinators to provide insight and improve future youth- Participants driven, strengths-based and creative-arts programming. Youth were recruited to participate in the workshop Correspondingly, the evaluation framework and tools through many ways: Tł˛ ıcho ˛ CART staff, in-person presen- aimed to capture both process (evaluating the activities tations, promotional posters (Fig. 2), word of mouth, and events that occur as part of implementation, what are radio and social media. Nine youth participated in the the strengths and weaknesses of day-to-day operations, workshop overall, with an average of 56 youth per day. how can these processes be improved) and outcome Several of the same youth came consistently for all 5 days, (evaluating the extent to which programme goals and and other youth were introduced to the programme mid- outcomes have been obtained) objectives. In doing so, the week from their friends who were already participating. framework details the evaluation objectives, respon- All youth were Tłı ˛cho ˛ and from the community of dent(s), indicators, methods and timing of data collec- tion. The evaluation framework is described in detail in Behchoko ` ˛ , NT. The youths’ ages ranged from 13 to 22; Appendix A. there were 4 females and 5 males overall. Five youth were unavailable to complete the youth feedback questionnaire Data collection because they did not attend the last day of the workshop. Programme evaluation was integrated throughout the Four youth completed the questionnaire, whose ages entire workshop. Observational data were collected every ranged from 14 to 22; there were 2 females and 2 males day by recording youth attendance numbers, different overall. activities youth engaged in that day and comments from Five Indigenous artist facilitators delivered the creative conversations facilitators and research staff had with arts programming. Each facilitator brought a diverse set different youth about their art and the art mediums they were working with. At the end of each day, a focus group was conducted to explore youth and facilitators impres- sions about the day and their experiences. Field notes were taken, and at the end of each day facilitators wrote a reflection. Two sets of questionnaires were developed, one for youth participants and one for artist facilitators. Both questionnaires were administered and collected at the end of the workshop. The youth questionnaire assessed 6 main areas: (a) recruitment, (b) satisfaction; (c) areas of success and areas in need of improvement; (d) cultural relevancy and appropriateness; (e) personal impact and (f) desire to continue engaging in the arts. The facilitator question- naire assessed 6 main areas: (a) satisfaction; (b) areas of success and areas in need of improvement; (c) challenges encountered; (d) experience working with youth; (e) overall impressions and (f) continuing youth engagement and capacity building in the arts. Sample questions from the youth and facilitator questionnaire can be found in Tables I and II, respectively. Finally, practice and field notes were incorporated to support the monitoring and evaluation of the workshop and contribute to organisa- Fig. 2. Promotional poster for the Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła Workshop. tional learning and capacity development. 4 Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 (page number not for citation purpose) Evaluation of the Ko `˛ ts’iı`htla (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) project Table I. Sample questions from youth participant feedback questionnaire Evaluation objective Sample questions To understand what elements of the workshop could be Did the workshop meet your expectations? Why or why not? improved What parts of the workshop did you dislike or feel could be improved? Why? What would you have liked to learn more about? To understand whether the workshop had a positive impact Did you find the workshop fun? on youth How has this workshop impacted you? Would you do this workshop again in the future? Why? Would you like to stay connected with the people in the workshop? What do you feel you have gained from the workshop? To understand appropriateness of workshop Did you feel comfortable working and speaking with the facilitators? The other youth? Why or why not? Did you feel the workshop was culturally relevant? To understand youths’ interest in continuing art initiatives Would you like to share your artwork and music with others? If so how? and sharing of their art Data analysis c. Data Source (‘‘using multiple data sources or respon- All data, including the participant and facilitator ques- dent groups’’): Three perspectives were represented in tionnaires, focus group notes, reflective practice notes the data analysis (programme coordinators, facilita- and field notes, were de-identified, cleaned, transcribed tors and participants). and entered into Microsoft Word. Data were analysed A ‘‘convergence-coding matrix’’ was created to display using an adapted version of the triangulation protocol the themes that emerged from each data source on 1 main described by Farmer et al. (11). Two researchers con- page using Microsoft Excel. Findings were coded for ducted a separate qualitative thematic analysis of each agreement, partial agreement, silence or dissonance. Two data source respectively. Three types of triangulation researchers then assessed the findings for convergence, were used to analyse the data: completeness and compared the level of agreement a. Multiple Investigators (‘‘involving 2 or more research- between researchers. The emerging themes were discussed ers in the analysis’’): Two researchers independently and agreed upon by 2 researchers. One researcher analysed the data sources and compared results. structured the main findings into groups, which were b. Methodical (‘‘using more than one research method reviewed and agreed upon by all authors. or data collection technique’’): Results were analysed Results from various methods of data collection (question- The data were compiled and grouped into the perspec- naires, focus group notes, reflective practice notes and field notes). tives of the youth, facilitators and art outputs. Table II. Sample questions from the facilitator feedback questionnaire Evaluation objective Sample questions To understand what elements of the workshop were What do you consider some successful components of the workshop? successful and what could be improved Why? How do you feel the workshop could be improved? What challenges did you encounter during the workshop? How did you overcome them? To understand whether the workshop had a positive impact From your perspective, what impact did the workshop have on the youth on youth participants? What do you feel was accomplished or gained from the workshop? To understand ways to continue arts-programming and Would you help with this workshop again in the future? If so, why and in share the art beyond the scope of this workshop what capacity? What are some ways we can help the youth participants to continue to use the arts, and reach out to other youth using arts/music Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 5 (page number not for citation purpose) Sahar Fanian et al. Youth perspectives identified components of the workshop that could be Youth were recruited to join the workshop through a improved for the future. Facilitators and youth partici- variety of strategies. The youth participants reported pants both said that having more youth participants hearing about the workshop either through posters, word in attendance and a balanced student: facilitator ratio of mouth or speaking directly with CART members. The would have strengthened the success of the workshop. youth participants gave different reasons for wanting to Facilitators also suggested focusing in on 1 or 2 art forms join Ko ` ts’iı `htła including, an interest in learning more and a couple of finished products, which could have about the arts, like film and media, and to improve their allowed for a more in-depth learning experience and an artistic skills. Others gave reasons such as having friends easier time discussing and producing a final piece of art. who joined, wanting to get out of the house and do More structure and pre-planning sessions also could something or wanting to have fun. One youth participant have helped with this. A couple of the facilitators also wrote, ‘‘I joined because I wanted something to do, to get suggested establishing a theme for the final art products out of the house and participate.’’ The majority of youth on the first day; however, while this may have helped participants said that the workshop met their expecta- focus the workshop activities, youth participants may not tions; however, some commented that they wished more have felt comfortable on the first day discussing certain people joined. When asked what components of the sensitive topics. Other suggestions included training faci- workshop they liked, youth participants wrote about litators on the local history and culture in preparation for having had the chance to learn and engage with different the workshop and also reducing the amount of music forms of art, like photography, painting, singing, filming, and recording equipment so as not to intimidate the working on the music video, etc., as assets. They com- youth from trying it. To further improve the workshop by mented on how it was fun to take part in and new for making the activities even more youth and community them. When asked about components of the workshop led, facilitators recommend sharing the art products at a they did not like, responses were minimal. However, some community event (if the youth express an interest to do identified wanting to see more youth involved in the so and feel it is appropriate). Furthermore, they stressed workshop. Many of the youth participants also said that the importance of ensuring that youth have access to they wanted to pursuit arts after completion of the supplies, necessary equipment and space upon comple- workshop. Some were interested in learning more about tion of the workshop so that youth can continue to or continuing street art, while 3 out of the 4 youth who develop their interests in the arts of their choice. responded to the survey wanted to pursue film. All youth Overall, facilitators found the workshop to be a posi- participants also found the workshop to be fun and tive experience. They commented that not only did par- engaging, citing being provided with food, meeting new ticipating in the workshop build confidence in themselves people and avoiding boredom as reasons for why they in their new role as a facilitator, they also recognised thought the workshop was worthwhile. Three out of four striking changes in confidence among the youth partici- participants said that they wanted to take part in more pants. One facilitator wrote, ‘‘the workshop seemed to workshops like Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła and suggested having art and increase the students’ confidence in the art forms and music programmes after school in the community. Most overall personality, as many of them came out of their also found the workshop to be culturally relevant and felt shell by the end of the week.’’ In their conversations with comfortable working with the facilitators. Some of the the youth participants, facilitators also found that youth female youth participants, however, pointed out that they commented on how the workshop taught them new skills, only felt comfortable working with the female facilitators. and provided new possibilities and opportunities for All of the youth said that they gained something positive them to explore the arts in the future. Finally, facilitators from the workshop, responses were mainly from making talked about the relationships formed between themselves new friends and learning new art skills. All of the youth and the youth participants as being one of the most expressed a strong desire to share and disseminate their positive components of the workshop. artwork. Art products Facilitator perspectives By the end of the 5-day workshop, youth participants and Facilitators completed an open-ended questionnaire and facilitators collaboratively created a mural (Fig. 3), music took part in debrief sessions following each day of the video and short film, each representing different themes, workshop. Qualitative findings from the facilitators challenges and hopes discussed by the youth. The process provided useful feedback on the process and functioning involved brainstorming all together or in small groups of the workshop as a whole, as well as its success and what they wanted represented in their art and how they challenges. While the facilitators found the workshop wanted it represented. The process of brainstorming to be successful in achieving its goals, in the products brought up significant points of discussion for the youth made and importantly, in the relationships formed, many participants, allowing them to express their concerns, 6 Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 (page number not for citation purpose) Evaluation of the Ko `˛ ts’iı`htla (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) project Fig. 3. Workshop facilitators on the last day of the workshop in front of the collaborative mural that the youth created with workshop facilitator Charlotte Overvold. Photo credit: Sahar Fanian. hopes and visions for their community and lives. Pictures and traditions (11) of ‘‘being strong like 2 people,’’ where from the music video production and lyrics for the music ‘‘young people are strong physically and spiritually; video can be found in Appendix B. determined yet cautious; able to read the environment for survival,’’ ‘‘work as part of a community,’’ and share Discussion and learn on the land (p. 13). Youth participants and Overall, we found that youth participants had a positive facilitators also saw the workshop to be successful experience participating in Ko ` ts’iı `htła because of 4 main because it was led by Indigenous youth artists, some of factors: they developed new skills, had positive interac- whom were from the community of Behchoko ` ˛. tions with facilitators, found the workshop to be cultu- All of the participants found that the workshop to rally relevant and enjoyable and used the arts to talk be fun and enjoyable, and many said that they looked about community issues and visions for change. All of the forward to coming to the workshop each day. We ob- youth participants identified having gained new skills in served that youth took pride in their individual and the arts and all expressed an interest in continuing and collective artwork, such as the music video, short film building on their artistic skills after completion of the and mural, and expressed an interest in sharing their workshop. Youth gained skills in visual arts, music and artistic products with other youth and others in their music production, film-making, photography, song writ- community. Finally, the workshop functioned as a catalyst ing and spoken word. for discussing issues and visions in their community and Facilitators also found that several of the youth lives. One-on-one and in groups over the course of the showed a noticeable increase in confidence over the course workshop, the youth participants began to share about of the workshop, with many transitioning from very shy challenges such as alcohol use, cyber bullying and suicide to confident by the end of the week. A second important and employment, as well as positive aspects of their success of Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła, as identified by participants and community and visions for their own and collective future facilitators, was the positive interactions and relation- through the artwork and in conversations. This was dis- ships formed between the youth, and between the youth played through their collaborative music video and and facilitators. Many of the youth participants had the mural, which participants hoped others in the community opportunity to spend one-on-one time with the facil- would see and would stimulate conversation about itators, giving them a chance to build on their artistic challenges, strengths and changes in the community as skills but also to share their thoughts, concerns and a creative and inspiring method of knowledge translating aspirations and to hear facilitators’ advice and personal and sharing. stories. There were opportunities for bonding, learning While we are still in the process of arranging for youth and sharing between the youth participants and facil- participants to display and discuss their work at the itators. Youth participants also found the workshop to be upcoming Tłı ˛cho ˛ CART’s Annual Youth Conference, culturally relevant, because it was based on Tłı ˛cho ˛ values our experience from Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła has shown us that the Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 7 (page number not for citation purpose) Sahar Fanian et al. arts have the potential to build resiliency, form relation- driven’’ (product has a value, e.g. mural will be put up in the community or music video will be shared with ships and stimulate discussions for community change other youth online). amongst youth in the North. We also created a community- friendly version of this report to share with Tłı ˛cho ˛ Limitations communities and others interested in developing or There are a number of limitations to our results. First, running community-based creative arts programming Ko ` ts’iı `htła participants were self-selected. Only youth for youth in their own community. Positioning the project who were interested in creative arts or were available for within the community’s health authority and building off the week would sign up to participate. Only 4 youth the established strengths of CART promoted project completed the full questionnaire, limiting our ability to sustainability. generalise results to the whole group. With such a small sample size, it is difficult to make any firm conclusions. Lessons learned However, we did get input from youth through other means from the debrief and focus group sessions, from a. Flexibility is essential. Each day the structure or agenda observational data and field notes, as well as from all for the day should be re-evaluated and adjusted facilitators, which has provided us with more data than accordingly depending on the number of youth parti- just the questionnaires. Second, youth who attended the cipants, available facilitators, youths’ interests, space workshop in some cases were variable, with some youth and facility restrictions and other circumstances. dropping out within the first couple days while others b. It is important to balance structure and non- joined later in the week. As a result, we do not have structured time throughout the workshop, providing consistent data from all youth and are missing data from ample opportunities for youth to collaborate and those who dropped out early as to the reasons why they engage in a new art form art, while also providing the did not continue. Although others in the group have space and time for youth to autonomously choose informed us that work schedules, particularly mining what suits their needs. shift work, may be responsible for the gaps in attendance. c. It is as important to facilitate group building and cohesiveness as it is to facilitate individual growth. Next steps However, group activities, such as sharing circles, Youth expressed an interest in continuing their engage- cannot be ‘‘forced,’’ they often happen organically ment with the arts and desire to share their messages with over the week, as participants become more comfor- other youth and others in their community through their table with one another. artwork. They shared their views that the music video d. It is important to create a safe space by establishing and film can be used as a way to connect with youth ground rules as a group. This gives youth participants across the world and to establish shared experiences, the opportunity to share, if they choose to, and support and empowerment. Participants had a strong feel safe about it while also reminding the group to desire to share their work online through well-known respect the confidentiality of others. media and social-media websites, as well as to share their e. Youth participants should have ownership over their work with the community as a whole through a commu- art. They choose what, how, where and when they nity showcase or event. Thus, we are presently working wish to showcase their artwork. with the youth and some key partners to discuss how f. The workshop should have ample opportunities for their artistic achievements can be shared with others. In youth collaboration and sharing of talents and skills. particular, some of the art products will be featured at the g. Artist facilitators should not only be skilled in their upcoming Tłıcho CART’s Annual Youth Conference. We respective art medium but also have some shared ˛ ˛ are also working with community partners to see how ground or experience with the youth. h. Depending on the number of youth and their inter- we can integrate art activities into existing community ests, it may be worth selecting only a few types of art initiatives. The goal of Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła is to be a community- that met the needs and interests of youth participants led and youth-driven initiative to continue supporting rather than having too many activities going on. creative art opportunities for youth in circumpolar i. Ensure there is an appropriate ratio of facilitators to communities. youth (approximately 1 facilitator per 34 youth). Conclusion j. Create a safe, culturally relevant, respectful and Evaluation results from Ko ` ts’iı `htła, a pilot creative arts creative environment for youth participants. ˛ and music workshop held in the summer of 2014 for k. It is important to determine what the workshop goals and objectives are and whether the project will be youth in Behchoko ` ˛ , have shown the potential for art to be ‘‘process-driven’’ (the process of making the art has used as a medium for building resiliency, forming positive benefits and is valuable in and of itself) or ‘‘product- relationships and stimulating discussions on community 8 Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 (page number not for citation purpose) Evaluation of the Ko `˛ ts’iı`htla (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) project suicide prevention (Grant number: TCS-134174) and the change among Tłı ˛cho ˛ youth and shows potential for CIHR Signature Initiative in Community-Based Primary Indigenous youth in Northern Canada. As this was a Health Care (Grant number TT6-128271). The authors pilot community project with a small number of partici- declare no conflicts of interest. pants, we encourage others to continue examining the role of creative arts as a tool for social change among References youth communities and share findings. By substantiating the existing literature on arts-based health promotion 1. Stuckey HL, Nobel J. The connection between art, healing, programmes for youth, we hope that these results can be and public health: a review of current literature. Am J Public Health. 2010;100:25463. used to support the sustainability of arts-based pro- 2. McDonald S, Viega M. Hear our voices: a music therapy grammes for Indigenous youth. Next steps will involve songwriting program and the message of the Little Saints helping to build a knowledge exchange platform for through the medium of rap. In: Hadley S, Yancy G, editors. Ko ` ts’iı `htła youth to share their artwork with others with Therapeutic uses of rap and hip-hop. New York: Routledge; the hope to stimulate youth-led discussions within and 2011. p. 15371. 3. Kipuri N. State of the World’s Indigenous peoples. New York: across communities in the circumpolar regions. United Nations; 2009. p. 5281. 4. Archibald L, Dewar J, Reid C, Stevens V. Dancing, singing, Acknowledgements painting, and speaking the healing story: healing through creative arts. Ottawa: Aboriginal Healing Foundation; 2012. The authors thank several individuals who generously shared their 5. ArcticFOXY. Who We Are; 2014 [cited 2014 Feb 8]. Available time, passion and creative expertise as artist facilitators: George from: http://arcticfoxy.com/ Bailey, Bonnie Fornier, Tiffany Harrington, Casey Koyczan, Travis 6. EMPOWER. 2010 [updated 2015; cited 2015 Feb 17]. Available Mercerdi and Charlotte Overvold. The authors thank the Chief from: http://www.empoweryouth.info Jimmy Brueanu School for providing us with the space to hold the 7. Leafloor S. Therapeutic outreach through Bboying (break- workshop. The authors also acknowledge and thank all the youth dancing) in Canada’s arctic and first nations communities: participants for collaborating, sharing their knowledge and learning Social work through hip-hop. In: Hadley S, Yancy G, editors. alongside us throughout the Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła project. Finally, this work Therapeutic uses of ap and hip-hop. New York: Routledge; would not have been possible without the support from the Tłıcho ˛ ˛ 2012. p. 12952. Government, the Tłı ˛cho ˛ Community Action Research Team, the 8. Ungar M. What is resilience? 2011 [cited 2015 Apr 20]. Available University of Toronto Dalla Lana School of Public Health and the from: http://resilienceresearch.org/about-the-rrc/resilience/14- Institute for Circumpolar Health Research. what-is-resilience 9. Edwards KE, Gibson N, Martin J, Mitchell S, Andersson N. Conflict of interest and funding Impact of community-based interventions on condom use in The Ko ` ˛ ts’iı `htła (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) Creative Arts and the Tlicho region of Northwest Territories, Canada. BMC Music workshop was funded by the Youth Contribution Health Serv Res. 2011;11(Suppl 2):S9. Fund through the Department of Municipal and Commu- 10. Hopkins S. The Tłı ˛cho ˛ Community Action Research Team: nity Affairs at the Government of the Northwest Territories. place-based conversation starters. Pimatisiwin. 2012;10: Funding for workshop coordination, evaluation, knowledge 195210. translation and dissemination of the workshop materials was 11. Farmer T, Robinson K, Elliott SJ, Eyles J. Developing and implementing a triangulation protocol for qualitative health provided by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research research. Qual Health Res. 2006;16:37794. (CIHR) Team Grant: Circumpolar, wellness, resilience, and Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 9 (page number not for citation purpose) Sahar Fanian et al. Appendix A: Evaluation framework Target population/ Timing of data Evaluation objectives respondents Indicators Data collection methods collection To understand how youth heard Youth Successful method(s) of Questionnaire Last day of about Ko `˛ ts’iı`htła and why they participants recruitment; youths’ initial Focus groups workshop decided to join motivation for participating At the end of each day To understand what elements of the Youth Number of participants Overall attendance and Attendance workshop youth and facilitators participants and Impressions of the workshop day- attendance at specific each day liked and what elements they felt facilitators to-day activities; overall satisfaction activities Last day of could be improved with workshop; elements liked/ Questionnaire workshop disliked; level of engagement during Focus groups, debriefing Throughout each activity sessions, reflective workshop practice notes, field notes To understand whether the workshop Youth Self-assessed feedback on cultural Questionnaire Throughout was culturally relevant participants and relevancy by youth participants and Focus groups, debriefing the workshop facilitators facilitators; sessions, reflective Protocols (asking for permission and practice notes informed consent, reciprocity), Partnerships (relational practice and collaborative problem solving), Personal knowledge (self-location and sharing of personal experience), Process (negotiating goals and activities), Positive purpose (building on strengths, meaningful experience for participants) To understand appropriateness of Youth Level of comfort between facilitators Questionnaire Last day of workshop participants and and youth; level of comfort amongst Focus groups, debriefing workshop facilitators youth participants sessions, reflective Throughout practice notes, and field workshop notes To understand youths’ and Youth Future interest and intentions to be Questionnaire Last day of facilitators’ intentions to engage participants and involved in the arts and/or Ko `˛ ts’iı`htła Focus groups, debriefing workshop with the arts and/or future art facilitators art initiatives sessions, reflective Throughout workshops after this pilot practice notes workshop workshop To understand whether the workshop Youth Level of positive influence of the Focus groups, debriefing Throughout had a positive impact on youth participants and programme; Skills, confidence, self- sessions, field notes, workshop facilitators esteem, positive relationships, etc. reflective practice notes Last day of gained; Self-reported learning new Questionnaire workshop skills related to creative arts; Self- reported positive influence from opportunities to collaborate with other youth/Aboriginal artists To understand youths’ interest in Youth Interest and level of enthusiasm for Questionnaire and focus Last day of continuing art initiatives and participants and sharing work and continuing art groups workshop sharing of their art beyond the facilitators initiatives like Ko `˛ ts’iı`htła scope of this workshop 10 Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 (page number not for citation purpose) Evaluation of the Ko `˛ ts’iı`htla (‘‘We Light the Fire’’) project Appendix B: Pictures of the music video production and lyrics for the music video We Write the Future Lyrics to ‘‘We Write the Future’’ Chorus: We write the future x2 I’m dealin’ with my demons on the daily but it’s not enough to drown me in this storm when the waters in the sea get rough Lookin’ down below I’m searching’ for a dash of clarity But smouldering’ in flames my fears clash with sincerity Chorus We compose the future but at times we stuck in writers block Obstacles be in my way when I’m racin’ against the clock Darkness breathing down my neck Close enough for me to touch Reachin’ out for courage cause alone this is a bit too much. A thousand years I’ve been frozen in perpetual paralysis But my visions become clearer under closer analysis I realize I’m the only obstacle in my way so now listen to me closely to hear what I’m bout to say Chorus Recording components of the music for ‘‘We Write the Future’’. Photo credit: Sahar Fanian. Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 11 (page number not for citation purpose) Sahar Fanian et al. Youth and facilitators in action, shooting scenes for the music video We Write the Future. Photo credit: Sahar Fanian. 12 Citation: Int J Circumpolar Health 2015, 74: 27672 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/ijch.v74.27672 (page number not for citation purpose)

Journal

International Journal of Circumpolar HealthTaylor & Francis

Published: Jan 31, 2015

Keywords: Dene; Indigenous; youth; evaluation; creative arts; resiliency; suicide prevention; health promotion; mixed methods; community-based research

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