Youth of Metlakatla learned valuable life skills during a trip to Vancouver earlier this year.

Metlakatla youth learn life lessons on Vancouver trip

The Scared Straight trip, which took 27 Metlakatla youth to Vancouver for a week this past Spring, was packed full of useful experiences.

The Scared Straight trip, which took 27 Metlakatla youth to Vancouver for a week this past Spring, was packed full of useful experiences and fun.

The trip provided great opportunities to bond for chaperones and students alike, with youth living in Metlakatla and Prince Rupert making strong connections.

“I came in not knowing anyone, and I’m leaving having made friends for life,” one youth commented.

The first day started off strong, with youth getting to experience two of Vancouver’s long-time institutions: the Downtown East Side and the Vancouver Canucks.

Youth were first introduced to Vancouver’s Odd Squad, a crew of Vancouver Police Officers who have worked on the Downtown East Side for several years. The Odd Squad spoke to them about the hazards of drug use, and took the youth to witness drug use first hand on a tour of the Downtown East Side. They were also introduced to an ex-gang member who shared his story of crime, drugs and incarceration.

To lighten up the day, youth got to watch a Canucks game from a suite at Rogers Arena—and were treated afterwards to a stretch limo ride to Mount Seymour to view the skyline.

Day two was filled with workshops that covered awareness about HIV and hepatitis, self-esteem, healthy sexuality, and the impacts of social media that can follow youth into adulthood. After a tasty lunch at the Spaghetti Factory, youth and chaperones visited the Urban Native Youth Association (UNYA) an aboriginal organization that caters to the needs of youth. UNYA showed the youth what services are available to help youth and adults alike that have suffered tragedy and/or trauma move into leading a healthier lifestyle. Afterwards, youth expressed interest in creating a similar space at home to hang out and feel safe.

The third day youth spent some time doing their homework, and then touring the University of British Columbia. Their guided tour informed them about programs and services available to First Nations students, and how to attend an orientation. The day finished up with a trip to Extreme Air trampoline world.

For their final day, youth volunteered at a soup kitchen where they were split into shifts preparing food, serving meals, and cleaning. The day ended at Science World, where youth challenged themselves with puzzles scattered around the facility.

Metlakatla youths Dylan Bolton and Quinn Leighton both attended, and both said it would make them think twice about the decisions they make in life.

“The trip was pretty great,” Bolton said.

“It was a good learning experience.”

When asked what they learned from the trip, the boys said they learned that drug use could lead to homelessness and addiction, as compared to going to school to make something of life and be successful.

Since the trip, staff have hosted a pizza and gym night in Prince Rupert with the youth to brainstorm ideas for a youth group and a potential safe space in Prince Rupert where they can go to hang out, talk, do homework, play games, and be themselves.

Just Posted

Tsunami warning lifted for coastal British Columbia

Emergency BC issued the warning after a 7.9 earthquake off Alaska early Tuesday morning

Tsunami warning issued for coastal British Columbia

Warning issued following 8.0 earthquake off Kodiak, AK

Raiders claim the crown in Terrace

The Prince Rupert Adventure Paving Raiders went 3-0 in the Terrace Classic

Kaien Anti-Poverty Society robbed again

The Prince Rupert society was robbed of food for a second time this month

Cause of Kitkatla seaplane crash released

TSB report on seaplane crash during a water landing in May 2016, Inland Air has since changed policy

VIDEO: New whale rescue equipment comes to Rupert

Fisheries officers took to the water to practice saving stranded whales

Carriers wanted for the Northern View

We have open routes for carriers all over Prince Rupert

VIDEO: Fuel truck and train collide in B.C. causing massive fire

More emergency crews are still arriving on scene of a massive fire at the Port Coquitlam rail yard.

Back to work: U.S. government shutdown ends after Democrats relent

Short-term spending measure means both sides could see another shutdown stalemate in three weeks

Man lives despite malfunctioning defibrillator at B.C. arena

A middle-aged man went into cardiac arrest after at game at Pitt Meadows Arena last Wednesday.

Vancouver police crack down on pop-up pot vendors

Officers raided merchants’ tables on Robson Square late Sunday

Bell Media, NFL take appeal over Super Bowl ad rules to top court

At issue is a ban on substituting American ads with Canadian ones during the game’s broadcast

Crown seeks 4.5 years jail for B.C. woman convicted of counselling tax evasion

Debbie Anderson the latest from group to face jail for teaching debunked ‘natural person’ theory

UPDATE: Brother of B.C. teen killed by stray bullet says the death left a void

Alfred Wong, 15, was gunned down in Vancouver while on his way home from dinner with his family

Most Read