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"Promoting Healthy, Active Lifestyles in Mi'kmaw Communities across Nova Scotia 
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Nova Scotia Aboriginal Canoe/Kayak Pilot Project Program

The Canadian Canoe Association (CCA), Atlantic Division, in partnership with the Nova Scotia Mi’kmaw Youth, Recreation & Active Circle for Living (MYRACL) is working together to create opportunities for increased active lifestyles for Mi’kmaw communities.  

Information on proposing a request for proposals has been presented to a number of community representatives at recent MYRACL Grassroots Committee Meetings and are now taking the next steps to identify communities interested in being selected as one of the three-five (3-5) communities that will be selected as pilots.

As outlined below, communities were required to follow guidelines to ensure the overall success of the program:


A)  Develop a community recreation/sport OR canoe pilot project organizing committee – this will ensure the smooth running of the pilot project throughout the pilot term.  Suggested involvement in the committee should include a minimum of 3-5 representatives consisting of persons from the fields of recreation, school, band council, health, fisheries (support) or general community. 

This committee should also have an established bank account with more than one official signing officer.  This pilot project would also require a minimum of three (3) support letters outlining the pilot project scope and organizing committee.  One of these support letters must come from either the school or band (ie: health, education, NADACA program, etc).

B)  Equipment (or commitment to acquire)

Canoes:             Minimum 4-6 recreational canoes

Paddles:             Minimum 18 recreational canoe paddles (various sizes)

Life Jackets:      14 life jackets (various sizes) – Option for participants   
     to supply their own which would reduce cost and 
     ensure appropriate fitting

Safety:                1 motorized safety boat – ensures safety and is an 
    effective coaching tool

C) Coaching Requirements (minimum 1-2 instructors)Communities are encouraged to involve as many community leaders as possible in coaching education initiatives in an effort to develop long-term leadership resources.

·     NCCP Level 1 Theory – Scheduled Regionally, more information is available at

·     Flat water instructor course (May 28-30 -June 4-6 2004 - Metro) – Option to host clinics in communities throughout the province

·      Pleasure Craft Operators Card

·      C.P.R./First Aid certification

D) Program Site

·        Reliable access to waterfront

·        Suitable area for launching of canoes and providing instruction

E) Facilities

·        Equipment storage space - Options include building space, secured fenced areas, transporting equipment by trailer for programming

·        Access to washroom/changing room facilities during program

F) Programming Requirements

·        Developed programming timeline (sample timeline attached)

·        Scheduled sessions for youth programming to be approved by  
   MYRACL and/or the Atlantic Division

·        Documented registration process

·        Insurance – Option to access through the Atlantic Division 
   (must register as an Atlantic Division canoe club to be eligible)

·        Program Steering Committee – 4-6 member committee to 
   guide programming or alternate plan to be approved by the 
   MYRACL and the Atlantic Division

Commitments of the CCA  (Atlantic Division):

(Italicized items have financial implications):

A) Coaching Assistance

·        Assistance in the scheduling, development and delivery of coaching education courses

·        1/3 reimbursement of coaching course costs -Participants 
   are eligible as long as they are active as a coach in their 
   community, as a part of an existing Coaching Assistance 
   program of the Atlantic Division.

·        Future opportunity for access to sprint racing coaching ed

B) Program Development

·        Assistance in program structure development

·        Program timeline guidance

·        Opportunity to liaise with potential partner organizations 
   including the Canadian Canoe Association, Canoe/Kayak 
   Nova Scotia and Nova Scotia Marathon Canoe Association

·        Access to programming insurance as a part of the Atlantic 
   Division – Canadian Canoe Association insurance policy.  By 
   first registering as an individual canoe club, insurance costs 
   are then determined by the number of participants and the 
   location of the program.  Costs typically range from $500-750.

C) Development Opportunities

·        Opportunities for access to sprint racing development 
   opportunities (i.e. coaching, equipment, camps)

·        Assistance in the effort to increase Nova Scotia’s participation 
   in the North American Indigenous games

·        Potential access to used sprint racing equipment should this 
   be determined as a direction for programming


D) Equipment

·        Equipment research and purchasing information

·        Equipment delivery

·        Potential access to sprint racing equipment should the need 


E) Canadian Canoe Association

·        Fee for canoe club registration waived by the CCA ($225 for a                first year club)

·        Free access to sprint racing programming resources should 
   the need develop (i.e. Canoe Kids Program)



Potential Budgeting Items                                                               Cost (taxes not included)


1 canoe, 3 paddles, 3 PFD’s, 1 whistle, 1 rescue bag                       $785.80

Insurance (approx.)                                                                                  $650.00

NCCP Theory Level 1                                                                             $  25.00

Pleasure Craft Operators License                                                         $  50.00

First Aid/C.P.R. Certification (approx.)                                                  $  50.00

Flat water Instructor Course (Hosting)                                                    T.B.D.

Coaching Wages (varies by community)                                                T.B.D.

Canoe Club Registration Fees (Waived)                                               $225.00

Facility Costs (varies by community)                                                        T.B.D.            

Equipment Summary by item                                                                 Cost (taxes not included)

10+ Guide Canoes                                                                                     $603.00

Hardwood Wooden Paddles                                                                      $ 16.50

Plastic/Alum. Paddles                                                                                 $ 22.50

CCG Approved PFD's                                                                                $ 35.00  

Rescue bags                                                                                                $ 25.00

Whistles                                                                                                        $   3.30


Sample Programming Schedule

Part-time programming

bulletBased on access to 6 canoes and associated equipment, groups would be a maximum of 12 participants
bulletProgramming also based on one part-time coach
bulletAccess to additional equipment and instructors will allow group size to increase



Tuesday OFF






Group 1 (Ages 8-10)


Group 1 (Ages 8-10)


Group 1 (Ages 8-10)


Group 2 (ages 11-14)


Group 2 (ages 11-14)


Group 2 (ages 11-14)








Group 3 (ages 15+)


Group 3 (ages 15+)


Group 3 (ages 15+)

Programming schedule may vary based on the needs of needs of the 

Aboriginal Canoe/Kayak Program Implementation Timeline:

May 1-14:            Identify interested communities through submission of a 
                             “Letter of Interest” (LOI)

May 14:               Communities to submit a “Canoe Pilot Project Hosting 
     Proposal”, which will include a summary of the existing 
     community requirements, resources, potential leadership 
     options and equipment needs.

May 21:               Selection of host communities for 2004 recreational canoe 

May 22-30:          Scheduling of coaching courses in selected areas in the 
                              province (if possible)

May 23:                Place equipment order

May 31:                Program Outline Presentation – Halifax, NS

June 4:                 Communities to complete Canadian Canoe Association     
      canoe club registration process

June 4:                 Communities to finalize programming structure and begin 

June 4:                 Community leaders to work with school system 
      representatives to identify potential for in-school canoeing 
      programs in the fall of 2004

June 11:               Community leaders/coaches to complete coaching 

June 11:               Insurance secured

June 18:               Participant registration complete

June 18:               Finalize programming options for school programming in the 
                              fall of 2004

July 3:                   Potential Saturday program launch in each community.

July-August:         Summer programming held

September:         Summer programming evaluation

Sept.-Oct:            School programming held

November:           School programming evaluation


As of September 2004, the CCA and MYRACL have determined that there will be a review of the summer program schedule and to identify some of the program challenges and successes that the three communities have faced this summer.  Once this evaluation process has been completed, a meeting of the three pilot communities will be organized. 

In November of 2004, there will also be a national meeting called "Aboriginal Canoe/Kayak Paddling" planned for Montreal, Quebec.  Representatives from each of the three communities will be participating at this gathering.

More details to follow shortly.  For more information and to see how your Atlantic Region can participate in this project, please contact MYRACL at your convenience and we'll be happy to provide any information your community or organization may need to get you started!

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Copyright © 2000 Nova Scotia Mi'kmaw Youth, Recreation & Active Circle for Living (MYRACL LTD.)
Last modified: January 19, 2006