Three NWT schools receive GNWT funding for youth resiliency

Mar 16 2015

YELLOWKNIFE (March 16, 2015) – Minister of Education, Culture and Employment Jackson Lafferty has announced funding for three NWT schools to both pilot and enhance existing youth resiliency programming.

Diamond Jenness Secondary School in Hay River and K’álemì Dene School in Ndilo were awarded $50,000 each to enhance their existing resiliency programs. Helen Kalvak Elihakvik school in Ulukhaktok was awarded $50,000 to pilot a new resiliency program for their students.

“Building resiliency in youth makes them stronger and better able to deal with challenges in their lives,” said Minister Lafferty. “Resiliency programs help youth connect to the community and culture they live in. This encourages positive relationships, develops leadership skills and strengthens that young person’s identity and well-being.”

Schools across the NWT were invited to apply for the funding through a proposal process. Applicants were asked to address selection criteria such as articulating the goals of their program, how their program would bring the school and community together, and identify its cultural relevance to the students. Program coordinators from the three schools will work together with the Department of Education, Culture and Employment (ECE) to monitor and evaluate program success as they are delivered through to June 2015. Careful evaluation of the program’s success in these select schools will inform possible further expansion of resiliency programming across the territory.

“Research tells us that culturally relevant resiliency programs see the most success,” said Minister Lafferty. “Resiliency depends on strong relationships with others and the community youth live in. That means a resiliency program in Hay River would be different from a program in Ulukhaktok, for example.”

Resiliency programming is part of the NWT Education Renewal initiative, a comprehensive effort to make improvements to the territorial school system over the next ten years. The Education Renewal Framework commits the GNWT to do its part to ensure student wellness and the development of a positive sense of identity are promoted and embedded in school experiences, programming and environments. The skills developed through resiliency programming will help students identify and access resources that are most relevant and culturally meaningful for their well-being.

For more information on resiliency and resiliency programming, and on the NWT Education Renewal initiative, please review the backgrounder and visit

Media inquiries:

Amber George
Department of Education, Culture and Employment
Tel: (867) 920-3059