Social Development

Principles of the GGC Social Development Program

This policy manual will change and evolve as the needs of the community and people change. It is the goal of the GGC and member Bands that the policies will evolve to a point where the traditions and culture of the Gitksan will be reflected throughout and that the House and Clans will assume more responsibility in promoting the health and well-being of each member.
The objectives of the social development program will focus on reinforcing the traditional responsibility of caring and supporting all Gitksan and working towards independence and growth away from social assistance to social development.
Social development includes developing educational and employment plans for all able-bodied individuals, focusing on realistic goals with assistance from the extended family House, clan and community.
It is the tradition of the Gitksan to be self sufficient and it is the responsibility of the extended family to assist individual family members in need. Only when traditional family resources are no longer available should one turn to the Band social development program for support. This should never be the first resort, but rather the last. Independence and self sufficiency should be the guiding force of every individual within the context of our traditional tribal culture.
Goals of the GGC Social Development Program (2006)
Individuals:
•To develop skills to seek and maintain financial independence through employment or business ownership
•To develop confidence in making decisions that affect one’s future through education or employment plans
•To develop the ability to make decisions and choices leading to self reliance
Extended Family and House:
•To strengthen traditional family responsibilities of caring for all.
•To provide assistance and guidance to all family members working towards independence and self reliance.
•To provide moral, and in some cases financial, support to family/House members as opposed to reliance on social assistance programs.
Community:
•To develop resources and programs that will assist individuals and families to become self reliant within the context of our traditional tribal culture.
•To encourage individuals to seek alternatives to social assistance through education, counselling and/or employment plans.
•To discourage individual and family reliance on social assistance programs and to encourage the tradition of caring for each other.