Amir Javid (centre) poses with two of the youth

Sex, drugs and gangs

Ex-gang member, now activist Amir Javid returned to Nak’azdli for a three-day workshop and seminar last week.

Ex-gang member, now activist Amir Javid returned to Nak’azdli for a three-day workshop and seminar last week.

The event was part of a huge initiative by the Nak’azdli Alternate Justice Program to help educate the community about sexual exploitation, drugs and gangs.

Karla Olinek and Maria Riske were the driving forces behind the event, and were happy with the turnout on Tuesday and Wednesday, after a slower start on Monday.

“We just want to educate everybody and do the preventative thing,” said Olinek.

She was impressed with some of the youth participation, as some of the youth she said might not have gotten out of bed before midday on Spring Break normally, but were at the event from 9:30 a.m..

On Wednesday,  Javid’s last day of presenting, there were around 120 people in attendance in Kwah Hall, from the very young to elders.

Youth from the entire area attended including Tache, Yekooche, Binche and Nak’azdli.

“He’s really engaging,” said Olinek.

Funded by a $25,000 grant Olinek and  Riske applied for and received through the Ministry of Public Safety to help prevent gang involvement and sexual exploitation and to address human trafficking issues, the event included a week of activities related to education and prevention.

Javid was once again well-received by the community, and was gifted with a baby quilt and moccasins for his young daughter and an eagle feather.

He was also asked to give the blessing before lunch, and was clearly honoured by the community’s embrace of his message.

“Every time I have come here, it changed my life,” he said.

Javid presented for the entire time on different topics related to sexual exploitation, drugs and gangs, but hopes the community can go even further.

“With that awareness change happens, it’s inevitable,” he said.

After the general education, now Javid said the next step is to get the Heroes program by the Impact Society into the schools, which helps to build resiliency in youth.

 

 

Just Posted

Repen: FOI data proves Telkwans being ripped off by ICBC

Former Telkwa mayor received a response from ICBC and says the results don’t look good for residents

Fires still burning near Telegraph Creek

BC Wildfire Service assures residents of a proactive plan heading into wildfire season

Northwest entrepreneurs pitch their plans for cash prizes

ThriveNorth announces 12 finalists in this year’s business challenge

Gas prices spike in northern B.C. ahead of the long weekend

Fuel went up 17 cents overnight in Prince Rupert

Cyclist braking stigma on addiction from coast to coast

Mathew Fee aims at world record for longest distance on BMX bike while sharing his story of recovery

Dashcam captures close call between minivan, taxi at busy Vancouver intersection

To make the footage more nerve-wracking, a pedestrian can be seen standing at the corner

Waste not: Kootenay brewery leftovers feed the local food chain

Spent grains from the Trail Beer Refinery are donated to local farmers and growers, none go to waste

Deck collapses in Langley during celebration, 35 people injured

Emergency responders rushed to the Langley home

B.C. mom wages battle to get back four kids taken from her in Egypt

Sara Lessing of Mission has help from Abbotsford law firm

VIDEO: Fire guts Peachland home

Crews are still on scene pumping water onto the blaze in the Okanagan neighbourhood

$6K raised in one day’s time for family of woman gunned down in Penticton

GoFundMe launched for family of Darlene Knippelberg, to pay for funeral costs and other expenses

B.C. mountain biker sent home from hospital twice, despite broken vertebrae

Released in Maple Ridge to go home with three fractured vertebrae

Seven tips to travel safely this Easter long weekend

An average of three people are killed, and hundreds more injured, each Easter long weekend in B.C.

Seattle’s 4-20 ‘protestival’ enjoys tolerance, some support – and B.C. could do the same

Seattle’s Hempfest a large-scale occasions with vendors, prominent musical acts and thousands of attendees

Most Read