About Us

W.I.N.K.S. Active Wellness Program is an interagency organization that works to support First Nations youth as they move to Sioux Lookout to attend secondary school.

W.I.N.K.S. is a collaboration between four local tribal councils; Keewaytinook Okimakanak (KOBE), Shibogama First Nations Council (SFNC), Windigo First Nations Council (WFNC), and Independent First Nations Alliance (IFNA), as well as the Northern Nishnawbe Education Council (NNEC), and has a combined student membership of 280+ youth from remote communities. For these students a move away from home can represent a period of significant upheaval in their lives, and many are in need of programs and activities that support their physical, social, mental, and cultural well-being. At W.I.N.K.S. we provide a safe space where students feel supported - a home away from home.

W.I.N.K.S. is an acronym that stands for our inter-agency partners (Windigo, IFNA, NNEC, KOBE, and Shibogama).

Mission & Vision

Our mission is to provide active wellness programming to students attending secondary school in Sioux Lookout, with a primary focus on those students who have left their First Nations communities.

Our vision is to cultivate wellness and resilience in our students through programming that heals, strengthens, and protects while also embracing cultural connections to the land.

Who We Serve

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Our priority is our students – young people who have had to leave their families and communities, and are most likely dealing with a period of significant upheaval in their lives. Our focus is to encourage the development of physical wellness, positive mental health, and success both socially and academically.

How We Serve

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Delivered from our centre at 57 King Street, our organization offers wide-ranging programming and events in areas including but not limited to: land-based activities, recreation, language, arts, and culture.

We work as a team with mental health counsellors, guest speakers, and knowledgeable First Nations service providers to create a calendar of events and programming that keeps our students active and engaged. Almost every day of the month has at least one organized activity for the students to look forward to, and we make sure to use all available resources both inside our facilities and outside on the land.

Input from the students is key to the development of our programs, and it’s often through simple interactions that we come up with some of our best ideas! Also important to us is staying focused on our overall mission and vision, ensuring that we keep to our long-term goals for our centre and community.

Our Community

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W.I.N.K.S. brings students together with community organizations to provide a broader spectrum of support and a more inclusive circle of care. Working with community partners W.I.N.K.S. provides opportunities for students including: networking, resource sharing, planning, and strategizing. W.I.N.K.S. has partnered with the Sioux Lookout Public Library, Nishnawbe-Gamik Friendship Centre, Sioux North High School and Student Council, Northwestern Health Unit, Police Services, and other local groups.

57 King Street, Sioux Lookout, ON

Call Us: (807) 738 5812

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