Newsletter – Summer 2017

Source (PDF): Seeing Oneself® Summer 2017 Newsletter

Excerpt from the Newsletter

“Lynn Francis, Director of Economic Development, Elsipogtog Mi’kmaq First Nation, New Brunswick, provided valuable leadership in preparing for the Seeing Oneself® Facilitator Training course, April 18-19, 2017. Lynn and her community partners, including “J” Division RCMP, are creating a path through capacity building to reach the goal of establishing a means by which youth will continue forward and contribute to developing a self-sustaining indigenous culture and thriving community.”

– Dr. Nancy Comeau, program developer

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I have been interested in youth and their well-being for many years. In fact, as an educator and youth addictions researcher, I have devoted much of my lengthy academic career to finding the root causes behind youth substance abuse and developing ways to reduce or prevent it. I was involved with the PEI Allied Youth program before heading to Australia to for graduate studies and later working in prevention and community education with NS Addiction Services. These experiences eventually prompted me to return to university to pursue an interdisciplinary doctorate. I wanted to explore what could be done to help teens with mental health and drug addiction issues. My focus was to develop evidence-based programming that the community could use to help vulnerable students avoid the pitfalls of addiction and crime. After completing my PhD in 2003, I developed the Seeing Oneself® program, a culturally grounded approach to school based intervention aimed at reducing substance abuse among adolescents, also available in French as Voir Qui Suis-Je®. My aim has been to develop a research based program that helps young people stay healthy. I am grateful that as a researcher I could help advance knowledge and as an educator I can put it into practice in collaboration with youth and community partners.

The SEEING ONESELF® program is intended to provide an informed, personally meaningful, timely, and appropriate response to support youth as they develop culturally relevant insights and meaningful skills to accomplish their positive goals.


A tribute to the Elders, youth and community members for their valuable contribution to the SEEING ONESELF® program:

Let us believe to be more alive

I believe in the wind for it whispers love
I believe in the stars for they shine endlessly so that we may shine
I believe in Mother Earth for it nourishes my life.
I believe in people because they are basically good
I believe in myself because I am worth believing in
I believe in the youth because they are the future of my belief.

This is my “I believe prayer” so that people may live more by believing.

– Patlias Tumma Kurudeepan omi, Sri Lanka
Indian Brook Mi’kmaw First Nation, Nova Scotia

“If I had known how to think like this before, I would never have done what I did.”

– 16 yr old youth (who had committed an assault) reflecting on their experience

Illustrations and graphic design: Nathan Collupy, Steven Power, and Stephen Piercy, Nova Scotia. Special thanks to PRINT 101 Ltd.

“I do want to say thank you for giving me the opportunity to take this training and bring this program back to my community. One more tool we can use for creative positive change.”

– SEEING ONESELF® Facilitator Training Instructor