Journey of GOV Legacy

The goal of Gathering Our Voices (GOV) is simple and strong: provide Indigenous youth with the tools to empower and inspire so that they can contribute their gifts to their communities and the world.

Over the course of four days, delegates gather from across Canada to participate in ceremonies, workshops, and engaging informative and educational experiences.

GOV provides tangible experiences, tools, resources, opportunities, and knowledge for youth to take back to their communities.

Over the years, many prominent Indigenous role models and leaders have inspired delegates by sharing their struggles and stories of achievement, including Waneek Horn-Miller, former Minister Melanie Mark, Dr. Evan Adams, Stan Wesley, Grace Dove, and Jack Saddleback.


The BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres (BCAAFC) is the umbrella association for the 25 Friendship Centres throughout the province of British Columbia. They act as a unifying body that maintains communication between Friendship Centres, other provincial associations, and the National Association of Friendship Centres while also providing supports to the urban Indigenous community.

The BCAAFC and its members have long recognized the need for Indigenous youth to come together in a supportive and encouraging environment. Thus, GOV was established in order to raise our hands and honour Indigenous youth for their resilience, strength, and leadership.

About PAYC

The Provincial Aboriginal Youth Council (PAYC) co-hosts GOV and is comprised of talented Indigenous youth leaders that represent youth voices at the provincial level. They work together to provide province-wide initiatives to Indigenous youth while also acting as a liaison between Friendship Centres, youth councils, and the BCAAFC board of directors.

The BCAAFC-PAYC has hosted 19 annual Indigenous Youth Leadership Trainings – starting in 1999 with over 100 delegates – in communities across B.C., including Prince George, Nanaimo, Vancouver, Kamloops, Victoria, Kelowna, Prince Rupert, Penticton, Richmond, and Port Alberni. Since then, it has grown immensely and continues to grow, where we anticipate over 1000 delegates each year.

Criminal Record & Vulnerable Sector Check

Every person attending GOV over the age of 18 must provide a valid Criminal Record and Vulnerable Sector Check (CRC-VSC).