The IAAW provides a number of programs and services to promote the advancement of Aboriginal women in Alberta. Click below to learn more:

Building Our Bundle

This is a six-week online mental and spiritual health program to support Indigenous youth during COVID-19 social isolation. Grounded in Cree cultural teachings, participants explore creative ways to keep positive.

Esquao Youth Leadership Development Program

IAAW offers a youth leadership development program to build skills and confidence in young women aged 13-17 years old. Summer activities include overnight camps, exposure to leaders and career exposures.

Esquao Awards Gala

Since 1995, IAAW has coordinated a community recognition ceremony to honour the strength, resilience and beauty of First Nation, Metis and Inuit women in Alberta. Since 1995, nearly 500 women have been recognized from 93 communities.

Financial Literacy

IAAW’s financial independence training (FIT) addresses poverty in a cultural context by building skills and confidence in women and girls. As part of the Empower U collaborative, participants’ savings are matched to increase ability to learn, build or save.

Firekeepers

A safe space for our women to share their stories, learn traditional ways of healing, and experience the support of their peers and elders. Geared to women who are transitioning from correctional facilities, weekly sessions support women who are on a healing journey.

Alberta Women Guardian Angels

The Institute for the Advancement of Aboriginal Women (IAAW) is honoured to partner with Women and Gender Equality and Youth on the Indigenous Women Guardian Angels project.  

Working with Guardian Angels – often leaders in the community – the IAAW will establish a communication pipeline to women and women’s groups to identify priorities and build connections to services that advance the individual capacity of Indigenous women, their families, and communities. The IAAW will build networks that accelerate systems change to address violence, poverty, mental health, and wellness of Indigenous women.

The IAAW will develop a mechanism to hear the voices of Indigenous women in 20 + communities across Alberta and build local solutions to address challenges and issues identified, including the root causes of gender-based violence. Stories of resiliency and perseverance throughout COIVD-19 will provide positive ways forward to pandemic recovery.

Healthy Relationships

Once a week, IAAW offers a 2-hour session to learn about mental, spiritual and cultural teachings to support new or existing relationships. Cultural and kinship teachings, how to build self-esteem, and historical trauma, are included in weekly topics.

Employment and Training

IAAW staff support Aboriginal women as they improve their skills, through training and education, and to find meaningful employment. The Employment and Training program includes funding for post secondary education, job readiness, employer wage subsidies and support while on the job for First Nation, Métis, Inuit, urban and non-affiliated Aboriginal women across Alberta who are 15 years of age or older.

ISET Program

The Indigenous Skills and Employment Training (ISET) program supports Aboriginal women as they improve their skills, through training and education, and to find meaningful employment. IAAW’s ISET program provides employment and training support services for First Nation, Métis, Inuit, urban and non-affiliated Aboriginal women across Alberta who are 15 years of age or older.

Justice Initiatives

IAAW has extensive experience in collaborative action planning on reforms needed to improve outcomes for Aboriginal women accessing or involved in the justice system.

System Navigator

A culturally relevant navigational and advocacy support service is provided in two cities; in Edmonton at the IAAW office, and in Calgary at the Awo Taan Healing Lodge.  Services include advocacy and referral, court support, training & creating awareness on barriers for Indigenous women. Emotional support and local resources are provided, especially those who are victims and not able to access supports.

View our Calendar for dates and more details about our programs.

Download our 2021-2022 Programs & Services