The Gathering Our Voices (GOV) Indigenous Youth Leadership Training, hosted by the BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres (BCAAFC) and its Provincial Aboriginal Youth Council (PAYC), is held annually in March during the education break. The local Friendship Centre and surrounding First Nations are engaged to ensure the community is consulted from planning to implementation.
GOV is guided by a Steering Committee who assist with setting the themes, selecting workshops, and inviting exhibitors and guest speakers. Having youth at the center of the leadership training, from its inception to the delivery of the event itself, creates an authentic and relevant experience for all in attendance.
Since GOV began, the goal for the leadership training has been simple and unwavering: PROVIDE INDIGENOUS YOUTH WITH THE TOOLS TO WORK TOWARDS A BETTER TOMORROW by improving themselves and the world in which they live. Over the course of four days, up to 1,500 delegates gather from across Canada to participate in ceremonies, workshops and engaging, informative and educational experiences.
GOV is held in various locations throughout the province to enable the greatest intake of new participants each year. Locations are rotated through Vancouver Island, lower mainland, the interior and the north.