The International Aboriginal Youth Internships (IAYI) initiative offers Indigenous youth in Canada the opportunity to gain professional experience through international development work.
In partnership with Global Affairs Canada, First Nations Forestry Society, Fair Trade Carbon Uganda and the Jane Goodall Institute of Uganda, 34 Indigenous youth interns will travel to the Masaka District of Uganda over a period of four years, beginning with six youth in the first year. Through this project, interns will help promote the connection between people, animals and the environment, and empower young people to take action on community issues.
In Uganda, interns will engage in diverse projects that address environmental sustainability, gender equality and improving Indigenous livelihoods through forest conservation. They will receive in-depth training and education in forest conservation and will learn about the forestry industry by participating in research, management exercises, orientation and teachings on new software and technology as well as field work.
After the four-month internship, participants will receive support in job search training and engage with networks that understand and support the specific needs of Indigenous youth and their communities. Ultimately, the IAYI initiative aims to increase Indigenous youth’s participation in their communities and increase their employment opportunities in sustainable forestry in Canada, and international projects abroad.