WHAT WE HAVE LEARNED
Allow citizens to create their own governance. We engage the community so that citizens have an opportunity to participate, fully understand and support the governance system that emerges. Too often our communities rely on models of governance that are based on someone else's notions of "good governance" for First Nations.
Be patient. Nation rebuilding takes many years. It starts with leaders and citizens who are ready for change and willing to develop a shared vision. They must understand their inherent rights, and be prepared to make their own laws and govern their lands.
Recognize day-to-day improvements. First Nations will find solutions to their day-to-day issues while working toward longer-term goals.
Combine lessons from successful First Nations with facilitated dialogue. Lessons from successful First Nations demonstrate what works. Facilitation allows participants to develop their own solutions.
Deliver services in First Nation communities. Community workshops provide better value by increasing participation from leaders, administrators, youth, elders and all citizens.
Recruit Aboriginal professionals to deliver services. Aboriginal professionals with experience living and working in First Nations offer an intimate understanding of community needs and issues.
Get invited. The Centre works with First Nations by invitation and does not impose its services or its approach on clients.
Be independent. The Centre operates outside of the influence of government, First Nations political organizations and industry. Independence is critical to building credibility and a trusting relationship with First Nation citizens. It means our work is impartial and free of outside agendas or rhetoric.