PHILOSOPHY & VALUE STATEMENT

We believe in being a peer-based organization where youth to youth mentorship and skill-building is fostered.

Above all of this, we believe in providing a chance for the youth-driven model to evolve and change, as it will in growing to realize its full potential.  

All youth have an inherent right to equality, dignity, safety, respect and their basic human rights regardless of age, race, ethnicity, culture, ability, class, gender identity, sexual orientation or any other distinguishing characteristics. 

Youth should be understood as a resource, not a problem. 

Change is voluntary and we believe that consistent service, unconditional acceptance, and healthy relationships are imperative in developing a trusting rapport with youth. It is only through this kind of trusting relationship that, when a youth is ready, we will be able to assist in facilitating a transition to a healthier lifestyle. Our experience has been that a youth-driven, peer-based model of service provision allows us to serve youth who are reluctant to access “gated” services, increases youth empowerment, and fosters a sense of youth “ownership” of the project.

We believe youth have the right to meaningful participation in decision making that affects them personally, politically and programmatically, since youth are experts in their own lives and needs. 

We value this expertise and recognize that youth must be consulted within making decisions that affect their lives, and the services that serve them. This means providing financial compensation for their consultation in order to make it possible for youth to afford the time to get involved. We thus provide training opportunities for youth with various levels of responsibility for running the project.

We believe in reducing barriers to service by designing our project to fill the gaps in service provision, by offering a service that is otherwise non-existent at this time. 

WE ARE ALL TREATY PEOPLE

We are located in Mi'kma'ki, the unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq people. This territory is covered by the “Treaties of Peace and Friendship” which Mi’kmaq and Wolastoqiyik (Maliseet) peoples first signed with the British Crown in 1725, 1728, 1749, and 1752. The treaties did not deal with the surrender of lands and resources but in fact, recognized Mi’kmaq and Wolastoqiyik's title and established the rules for what was to be an ongoing relationship between nations. POSSE acknowledges that the same systems of white supremacy and colonization that oppress and harm Indigenous peoples in Nova Scotia have also done so to Black Nova Scotian communities.

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