KENORA, ON – The Hon. Greg Rickford, P.C., MP-Kenora is happy with the announcement that the federal government, and the Ontario Provincial Police have committed to helping at-risk Aboriginal youth in Pikangikum First Nation with $2,389,319 over 5 years for Project Journey, a crime prevention program.
“I am very pleased to see this project come to fruition. As a former nurse and a lawyer, I was fortunate to work with community leaders in Pikangikum to improve health and economic development of the community,” stated Rickford. “I know first-hand how this project will give at-risk youth the tools and opportunities they need to steer clear of crime and live in a safe community.”
Rickford spent a number of years in the north working in many of the communities. Since taking on the responsibility for the Ring of Fire and Fednor, the Minister had made several major steps helping northern communities.
Project Journey, led by the Ontario Provincial Police Red Lake Detachment, will prevent and reduce youth crime and anti-social behaviours among Aboriginal youth-at-risk between the ages of 6 to 18.
Each year, the project will engage 75 to 100 youth in primary activities with an additional 50 youth participating in secondary activities together with their parents, including mentors and tutors who function as positive role models. By providing community-oriented service learning, outdoor activities, classroom based learning, and family oriented activities, the project will decrease incidents of violent and drug related crime and increase positive relationships between youth, police and elders.
Since 2009, the Federal Government has been helping the community in building a safe, active community for Pikangikum First Nation through funding for a new community multi-plex, which includes a public library, an addition to the recreation centre to promote healthy, active living and a new police station.