Twelve Indigenous organizations from across the province will receive $3 million in funding from the Bridging Classrooms to Communities pilot program.
In July 2023, Alberta’s government announced a $10.5-million investment over the next three years to help support Indigenous student success through the Bridging Classrooms to Communities pilot program. The pilot program aims to create welcoming environments, demonstrate cultural awareness and provide system support to encourage Indigenous students’ success in and out of the classroom.
Of the total funding, the Alberta Native Friendship Centres Association received $7.5 million to distribute to friendship centres within their networks. The remaining $3 million has been awarded to 12 Indigenous organizations in rural and urban areas across Alberta.
“Thank you to every organization that applied for the pilot grant program. I believe this funding is an important step forward to make meaningful connections through Alberta schools for students and families. I look forward to seeing the results of the projects and the development of positive relationships between students and their communities.”
Demetrios Nicolaides, Minister of Education
The funding is expected to support up to 33 community connection projects in schools across Alberta. Alberta Education is committed to reconciliation and Indigenous-led solutions that improve education outcomes and create opportunities for First Nations, Métis and Inuit students.
“Partnerships like these are essential to reconciliation and will help strengthen opportunities in education across Alberta. I look forward to the positive difference this pilot program will make for students in the years ahead.”
Rick Wilson, Minister of Indigenous Relations
“This funding will support Warriors to Leaders, which will allow students to create positive connections within the Indigenous community. These supportive and encouraging relationships will help to bridge the gap between Indigenous youths’ social, familial and educational systems, encouraging a greater capacity to lead and succeed.”
Organizations receiving funding include:
Bent Arrow Traditional Healing Society
Changing Horses Not-For-Profit Society
Eagle Spirit Nest Community Association
Indigenous Sport Council of Alberta
Métis Nation of Alberta Local #2003
Mountain Métis Community Association
Riel Institute for Education and Learning
St. Albert Sturgeon County Métis Local #1904
Stoney Health Services
The Nu Ch’anie Society
Urban Society for Aboriginal Youth
Friendship centres provide cultural programs and services to respond to the unique needs of Indigenous people in urban and rural communities across Canada.
The Alberta Native Friendship Centres Association is a provincial association of the 21 friendship centres within the province.