August 5th, 2019

Brandon in Beamsville

My placement is in Beamsville Ontario, it’s about 2 hours to Toronto and about half an hour to Niagara falls, Beamsville is on the south side of lake Ontario.

We spent a day in Toronto, in the morning we visited the CN tower, my favourite part was the glass floor jumping up and down and the elevator going 15 mph. The view from the top was surprising and the people on the ground looked like ants, after the CN tower we went sailing. 

So far in the program I went to Niagara falls with my host family at day time and with Rebecca and Sean at night time. What I did like was seeing the falls, you could feel the mist and hear the falls, what I did not like was the crowds and cars. At night time the falls had colored lights and fireworks.

We also went to Canada’s wonderland. The Bat was the first roller coaster I went on and it goes backwards, the Yukon Striker is the brand new roller coaster just opened this year, it has a 90o drop and it goes 130km/h. The scariest part on Yukon Striker was the drop. The leviathan was my favourite roller coaster because it was scariest and longest. I didn’t like the Time Warp because you had to hold on really tight.

Thanks for reading!

August 5th, 2019

Jeremi’s time in Kingston so far

Hi, my name is Jeremi Boisvert and I’m from Taloyoak, Nunavut. I am 17 years old. I have lived most of my life in Taloyoak but I did live in Montreal when I was younger, where my dad is from, so I have been to the south quite a bit but never without my parents.

My placement is in Kingston, ON. I think it’s pretty nice here and I’ve enjoyed my time so far. I’ve always liked swimming, my buddy Dion and I went swimming in Lake Ontario, Big Salmon Lake, and to a couple of pools. I also like going to the movies with my buddy and I finally got to see Avengers: Endgame. There aren’t any theatres in my community so its cool not to have to wait six months to see new movies.

My work placement is at the D&D Auto shop, where I assist the mechanics fixing cars and have some cleaning duties. The guys there are really nice and I enjoy working there, though some days feel long especially when I don’t get my coffee in the morning. I drink a little too much coffee for someone my age, but what can I say, I get it from my parents.

My host family, Wilson and Caroline, are really nice and their home is as well. They have lots of space for Dion and I. I really appreciate that they welcome us into their home and for taking us to places to see and try new things.

I applied for NYA for a few reasons but the biggest being I wanted to get experience living in the south so that I’m ready when I go for post-secondary school. I wasn’t sure where I wanted to go, but I think I might try for Queens here in Kingston. I want to study electrical engineering, and at queens, they have good engineering courses and an indigenous entry program which all make Queens convenient for me. I will be going to an engineering camp there next week which I am looking forward to. I am going to Canada’s Wonderland with Dion and two other NYA participants, Nathan and Lutie which I’m really excited for.

NYA has been a really good experience for me so far, I made lots of friends at Orientation and I can’t wait to see them at Re-Orientation. I encourage anybody of age to apply it is an amazing experience, especially if you are from Nunavut, the pop is nice and cheap.

August 5th, 2019

Ben in Bear River

Hi my name is Ben. 

I’m from Colville Lake in the Northwest Territories and I’m 16 years old. My placement is in bear river First Nations in Nova Scotia. My host mom is Holly Meuse and my host brothers Brock, Cruizer, and Jesse. I have volunteered at a community center, band office, fire hall and a carnival. 

My host buddy and me have been going to a mall, a Virtual Reality stop, an escape room, rafting and mud sliding. My favourite part of the summer has been being with my mom when she visited. 

I had never done an escape room or rafting before. I’m excited to see everyone at orientation. 

Thank you for reading my blog. 

August 5th, 2019

Renee’s summer in Flatrock, Newfoundland

My name is Renee Okalik and I am from Whale Cove, NU. I am also a participant in Northern Youth Abroad (NYA). This opportunity wouldn’t happen without you guys believing in me.

For my job I am volunteering at is a Traditional Coffee House. I worked with mostly ladies and a few teenagers (they’re wonderful people). The responsibilities I had was to prepare for the busy lunch hour.

In my host family, they are Willow and Dave Anderson, and my host little brother, Dexter. Very loving, kind people they are. The things I get to do over the summer is to go on road trips/ vacation, go to concerts, and attend different activities like drum dancing.

Before this program, I was a timid person. NYA even got me doing a presentation which has helped me a lot so far about talking publicly.
After being a participant in NYA, I will volunteer in some activities at home. Encourage other youths to join this program. This program got me thinking about what I want to become. An Inuk educator to teach people about my people.

Thank you for reading my blog.

Renee Okalik

August 5th, 2019

Dion’s summer in Kingston Ontario

Hello my name is Dion Sanguya!

I am in the Canadian program, placed in Kingston Ontario. I’m am in between Toronto and Ottawa where there are many things to do here and I have been having so much fun in the past 5 weeks and I can’t wait to meet all of my fellow participants at Re-orientation and have a great time.

While I’ve been here with my buddy Jeremi I’ve had a lot of fun doing many things and we went to Canada’s Wonderland not long ago and it was awesome while we went there we met up with Lutie and Nathan! We had an awesome time together and made many laughs on the rides and in the water park I was very curious of how I would do on the rollercoasters but it was awesome and I loved how fast we went, I can’t wait to see how everyone else is doing and I hope every single one of you are okay and having fun.

We’ve went to new places and had fun trying new foods too like, Thai foods and going to the theatres, I’m very excited to see all of my fellow participants again and going to make the most of my time having fun now and I hope you all will enjoy your times cause I’ve enjoyed mine.

Sincerely, Dion. PS I’m a goofy guy.

August 5th, 2019

Jolan’s time in BC

My name is Jolan, Jolan Kotchea, I’m from Fort Liard, NWT, and my placement is Squamish, B.C.

It’s currently treating me well, It’s very beautiful here, mountains are very nice to look at, and to hike. My work placement is a day camp and I work with children from ages 6-9. It’s very fun, I do a lot of activities everyday, and it’s a different activity each day so it doesn’t get boring. The day camp is called “Kid Kapers”. 

My highlight of the summer is seeing a lot of different things every day and learning more about my host community, and exploring the area.

August 5th, 2019

Marilyn’s summer in Glencoe

My name is Marilyn Kochon, I’m from Colville Lake and I’m currently living in Norman wells. I’m looking forward to graduating from high school by the year 2020.

I’m a participant in the 2019 Northern Youth Abroad (NYA) Canadian program. A big thank you to everyone who supports the NYA program, otherwise, without your support my experience would not be possible. This summer my host community is in Glencoe, Ontario. There is a Tim Horton’s which I don’t have in my community.

My work-placement this summer is at a ELM day centre, I walk to work every morning and at the end of the day it takes me around six minutes to reach my work placement. Throughout summer I have been volunteering at a ELM day centre. I work with nine or more toddlers. My duties included doing yard checks, raking the sand, bringing the snacks and lunch upstairs to the toddler room, and tidying up after the toddlers. After they have finished eating I would bring the dishes downstairs. Working here is a great experience, I love kids and they seem to like me and they like to engage in conversations or ask what’s my name. Today I started working with the preschoolers. Some of the kids already know my name but I can’t remember all their names.

I loved the family I stayed with over the summer. My host mom and dad Jennifer and dan, host sister Danielle host brother Michel, and their cat Ray. They’re amazing to be around. They have been so warm and welcoming, which made the stay comfortable.

Some of the fun things I did over the summer going on road trips with my host family to their ranch where they have some ducks their building a fence for their horse. They have a pool outside their house so I went for a swim. We went to Niagara Falls so it was a first for me which was fun.

Being a participant for NYA has been a lot of fun so far. The program has helped me with things like time management, being more open about my feelings, learning how to work as a team, learning more about post secondary schools,

Some things I find different in the south compared to home is the price of food or fruit, back home the prices are high in the south everything is cheap.

Thank you for reading my blog


Marilyn Kochon

August 5th, 2019

Emily in Dartmouth

My name is Emily Hardisty-Marcellais and I am from Fort Simpson, Northwest Territories. I am a participant in the 2019 Northern Youth Abroad Canadian Program. I’d like to thank everyone who supports NYA, because without it I wouldn’t be able to attend this amazing program. And thank you to the NYA staff for taking care of all us, and making this program fun and educational.

My host community is in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. There are a lot of things to do here, such as going on hikes on trails, going shopping, checking out festivals, and joining a yoga/fitness group on the weekends. I like that there’s a lot of things to do here, while in Fort Simpson activities are limited, so I like the options. Dartmouth has some flaws though, I’m not used to the heat, and I’m not used to travelling so far to get to a store, the nearest store from me is twenty minutes away. Other than that, Dartmouth is great. 

Throughout the summer I have volunteered at Selby’s Bunker. Selby’s Bunker is a café and gift shop; working there was really fun, I got to make drinks, take orders, serve people food, and the staff there were so nice, they made my summer great. At my work place I learned that it’s okay to ask questions, and that it’s okay when you mess up, and being responsible with money and food, being more patient.

I liked the family I stayed with over the summer. My host mom Leticia, host sisters Fatiko and Kayla, and their six cats. They were very welcoming, which I liked. We did have a few challenges, but we sorted it out. I’m happy they opened their home to us and gave me this amazing opportunity. 

Some fun things I did this summer was go shopping, exploring trails, going to the movies, going to festivals, going to carnivals, and checking out the beach and boardwalk. 

Being a participant for NYA has been a lot of fun and a great experience. The program allowed me to see more of Canada, gave me a great opportunity, and a chance to meet other youth from the Northwest Territories and Nunavut. This program has helped me with my confidence, asking more questions, learning about post-secondary school, other cultures, and what it’s like to live abroad.

What I’ll be doing with my experience with NYA when I get home is try to encourage other youth to join this program, the youth in Fort Simpson need to see what the world can offer them and the great opportunities they can have. I believe it’s important for the youth in my community to see different parts of Canada/the world, I want them to see that there’s more for them outside of Fort Simpson, like I said so many opportunities for education, jobs, travel, etc. I know every young individual in my community is capable of doing great things, and I think NYA is a great way for them to see that. 

I’d like to thank Kristen Morrison, Jackie Whelly, Val Gendron, and my family and friends, and the rest of my community for supporting me, without you I couldn’t have had this amazing experience.

Thank you for reading my blog!


Emily Hardisty-Marcellais

August 5th, 2019

Holly in Campbell River

Hi, my name is Holly Norwegian. I live in Fort Simpson, Northwest Territories; originally from a small town called Jean Marie River. I am a participant in the 2019 Northern Youth Abroad Canadian Program. Big thanks to all who have supported and helped me with fundraising ; especially my home community, to be apart of this program. 

I was placed in Campbell River, British Columbia. Population of approximately 35,000 people. I am volunteering at the Laichwiltach Family Life Society. I started at their Head Start, and had so much fun working with the staff and children. The Head Start was only a three week long Program, so I was recently moved to the Little Fry daycare, which I also enjoy. 

My host parents’ name is Debbie, Debbie Weir. She’s brought me almost everywhere on Vancouver Island; Nanaimo, Port Alberni, Duncan, Cowichan Bay, And Victoria.

I have been exploring a lot of Campbell River on my own time, and it certainly has some very beautiful sites. My favourite place to go would probably be the pier and shoppers row. The pier has very good ice cream, and shoppers row has lots of stores to browse around. 

I am so glad to have been placed here, the people are very friendly. My host parent is very kind and generous. The people I work with are very kind and easy to get a long with, and the kids have brought so much joy over the month. I am also very very glad that I applied and was selected to be apart of Northern Youth Abroad. This is an experience that I will never forget. 

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog. 

Sincerely, Holly Norwegian

August 2nd, 2019

Marina in Castlegar

Hi, my name is Marina.

I’m from Qikiqtarjuaq, Nunavut. I am a participant in the NYA Canadian Program 2019. My work placement is at Doukhobor Museum.

I’ve met kind people there they’re so welcoming. I love it when they show me how lovely they are. When I learned about Doukhonor’s it makes me want to keep my culture alive. My host parents are amazing to be around. I had a lot of fun going to other places and go hiking, swimming and many more.

I can’t thank enough to Northern Youth Abroad for giving us this opportunity to experience here in down south with amazing people.