Project Profile: Prince George Native Friendship Centre Day Care
The goal at Little Friends Day Care at the Prince George Native Friendship Centre is to create and provide a culturally Indigenous focused, safe and caring learning environment for children by offering activities which are suited towards each child’s level of growth and development. Their philosophy is to work collaboratively with families to help each child reach their full potential and establish a proud sense of self and excitement for a lifetime of learning and playing. Little Friends Day Care is open to the whole community, and is excited to support and offer services to families in Prince George. They offer full time and part time child care spaces for children ages 2.5-5 years old.
The organization recently transformed their space and used many of our beautiful, sustainably made learning furniture pieces, because of our two organizations culturally and environmentally aligned values. Using simple, natural, sustainably harvested wood furniture supports not only the learning outcomes of the organization but supports the cultural First Nations Indigenous values of the community as well.
The Prince George Native Friendship Centre is one of many Friendship Centres across BC. The history of Friendship Centres in British Columbia dates back to 1954 when a group of concerned Aboriginal people in Vancouver formed the Coqualeetza Fellowship Club in order to provide support services to Aboriginal students moving to the city. In these early years, as Friendship Centres multiplied they were primarily perceived as a place where Aboriginal people could drop in and have a cup of coffee; a place where they could socialize and receive emotional support. During these formative years, Friendship Centres offered few direct services as their primary role was to refer people to existing social services agencies.
While each Friendship Centre is as unique as the community it serves, all are united in their efforts to improve the quality of life of Canada’s Aboriginal people and to protect and preserve Aboriginal culture for the benefit of all Canadians. Friendship Centres are reflective of the communities they serve, controlled at the local level and, above all else, responsible to and responsive to the people they serve.
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