What is GEN7?
In collaboration with Active Circle, GEN7 encourages Aboriginal youth to live, and encourage others to live, an active and healthy lifestyle through sport, physical activity, and other means. GEN7 also helps Aboriginal youth to become leaders in their community.
When and why was it developed?
In 2004, after ten years of running the Esteem Team program, it became clear that one group of youth was not being adequately reached: those of Aboriginal descent. Drawing from the expertise gained through the Esteem Team, and in partnership with the Aboriginal Sport Circle, GEN7 was developed in 2005 as a role model program specifically designed for Aboriginal youth and the unique challenges they face.
How does it work?
With the creation of the Active Circle program in 2008, GEN7 became an instrumental part of establishing a trusting relationship with Aboriginal communities. Our GEN7 Messengers are Aboriginal athletes and role models who are also trained by Motivate Canada in public speaking and facilitation. When a GEN7 Messenger is ready, he or she is paired with an Aboriginal community to act as a role model and motivator for the youth of that community. GEN7 Messengers visit a community repeatedly, and during this process they listen and learn to identify areas of interest for community development and develop connections with the community’s youth, Elders, and other leaders.
Additionally, thanks to the work of the GEN7 Messenger, the youth of the community are equipped to take the lead on tackling the community’s issues and improving their lives and the lives of those around them.