A look at our programs in 2017!

In 2017 Northern Youth Abroad proudly celebrated our 20 year anniversary! There have been several highlights this year, illustrating both where the organization has been and where we are going. This year NYA ran three core programs for the first time in our organizations history!


Canadian Program

The Canadian Program is NYA’s first and largest offering. The program is 10-months in length and is highlighted by a six week placement in one of the 10 southern provinces. Participants are paired, and stay with a host family while completing a volunteer work placement that aligns with their career interests. Participants earn up to 9 high school credits for their efforts while building a variety of skills in a supported environment. Returning youth have a clearer sense of their identity and of their own interests, skills, and career objectives.


2017 Accomplishments:

  • This year 35 youth completed the Canadian Program, highlighted by a five week placement in 18 communities across southern Canada
  • This year we had 18 host families spread across Ontario, British Columbia, and Nova Scotia
  • Canadian Program participants worked a total of 4,760 hours at their volunteer work placements


International Program

International Participants travel as a group to a foreign country to contribute to a local volunteer initiative, build career skills, increase independence, acquire new knowledge and experiences, and exchange culture with local indigenous populations. Cultural exchange and immersion in local life is an important component of the international program as it allows Participants to explore the similarities and differences between the people, cultures, and circumstances of their home and placement communities.


2017 Accomplishments:

  • This year’s International program was completely revamped, with the team of six participants and two leaders travelling to Costa Rica
  • The team spent 7 weeks divided between 3 locations - first at Cirenas, a coastal campus where they learned about sustainability and perma-culture. They then spent 3 weeks in San Jose participating in mini-courses at United World College, and doing volunteer work, and then spent a final 12 days completing an Outward Bound program.
  • All in all it seemed to be a very positive experience, and one that succeeded in meeting our intention of having an International program that challenged participants, inspired them to think beyond themselves, and to have a deeper learning about global issues, while gaining clarity in their own path.


NYA Next

NYA Next works to revisit, reinforce and build upon many of the facets and lessons of the Canadian program by promoting education, personal growth, cultural awareness and career preparation. The program addresses NYA’s desire to build more diverse offerings, emphasizing goal setting and achievement, which can be individually tailored to each Participant’s interests and needs. The bulk of the summer placement for NYA Next takes place at Algonquin College in Ottawa, where Participants will learn about construction and building; while also engaging in volunteer work and service learning and participating in a multitude of group activities.


2017 Accomplishments:

  • 12 participants completed the NYA Next program, highlighted by a 5 week stay at the Algonquin College campus in Ottawa
  • Participants completed a four-week course in construction and trades put on by the college
  • Participants also took part in a broad range of group volunteer experiences throughout the city and surrounding area, in a number of different learning areas
  • Each participant took on an individualized Personal Learning Project, which entailed an educational experience chosen by each participant to further their learning in an interest of their choosing
  • Participants were involved in two adventure experiences – one a 4-day trip to Montreal, the other a camping trip in Algonquin Park


Northern Youth Abroad is beyond appreciative and grateful for the support we have received over the past 20 years. With your support we continue to strive to empower youth across the Nunavut and the Northwest Territories to achieve their goals!


Here’s to the next 20 years!


find out more about all things NYA at our website!

Posted by: Northern Youth Abroad on November 22, 2017.