Waseskun, in conjunction with Mizheekay, offers the Employment Skills Program to our residents to help empower them to be better able to adjust to life when they return home and to follow their healing path to a brighter future. We offer basic training and hands-‐on experience in kitchen help, maintenance, woodworking and other related areas, when resources are made available. Mizheekay works towards developing different resources both inside and outside Waseskun (municipalities, community organizations and businesses). These may include woodworking and related Sawmill projects and volunteer work in the surrounding communities, as they become available. Through these opportunities, residents develop and perfect different skills, talents and abilities to help them succeed wherever they go in the next steps of their social reintegration. Some acquired skills can be seen as relevant work experiences, transferable to future employment.

In 2014, Waseskun and Mizheekay acquired a sawmill which is actively put to use by men in the program to cut boards from logs to use in many woodworking projects. In 2015, Mizheekay opened a boutique at the entrance of Waseskun to enable residents to sell their woodworking products to the public and to take special orders at their request. The MIzheekay Boutique provides residents with the opportunity to gain experience in running and managing a small business, while earning money from the results of their skilled work.


Volunteer activities outside of Waseskun depend on the season and the availability. Activities range from general maintenance, tree-‐cutting and grounds work, to work requiring specific expertise. We network with local community groups and encourage residents to volunteer their services for their personal development, skills improvement and preparation for social reintegration.



As part of living at Waseskun, residents are required to perform daily chores in service of the community and for the maintenance of the center, such as food preparation, dishes, washing floors, cutting wood, tending the grounds and minor repairs.


Waseskun has two resident buildings with single private rooms. Each bedroom is approximately 8 feet by 14 feet, with a locking door. Each resident has a key to their own room and shares a fully equipped bathroom (tub, shower, sink and toilet) and a common area with 1 or 2 other residents in neighbouring rooms.

3. Facilities

Waseskun has a small gym for exercise and working out. There are two TVs with satellite hook-‐ups in the main building, one of them being a big screen TV. Residents may have their own TV for use in their rooms; screens can be as large as 32 inches. Many residents have satellite hook-‐ups in their rooms. Video games are allowed, but any electronics with internet or Wi-‐Fi capabilities are not allowed at Waseskun. Cameras and personal computers are not allowed at Waseskun. Residents may have supervised access to onsite computers in the school computer lab. There are 6 pay phones available to the residents (calling cards at residents’ expense).


Residents can occupy their spare time in a variety of ways including: alone time, working out in our weight room, sculpting and carving in our Arts and Crafts Pavilion and/or Soapstone Carving Hut, and instructional, supportive, social activities that they organise, including a variety of workshops, Drumming Group and AA. As well, special activities are organised for Change of Seasons and Holidays (Christmas, New Year’s, Easter, Halloween and Okiweh {Celebration of the Dead}) where the residents get a break from regular programing and take time to enjoy themselves and socialize with the rest of the community, playing games, team sports and friendly competitions. Smoking in not allowed on Waseskun property. Electronic cigarettes are permitted, but may be used only in designated outdoor areas.


As part of their healing, all residents choose at least one of many committees to participate in so as to learn and practice planning, management and taking responsibility. The committees plan events and outings and raise funds for Waseskun.

6. Peer support.

Residents who have reached a certain level in their healing process may be asked to act as peer support for new residents at Waseskun, acting as role model and guide, while helping them adjust to life at Waseskun.

7. Canteen.

Waseskun manages a Canteen, known as The Snack Shack, which is stocked and run by residents with help and guidance from staff. A variety of snacks and personal products are sold, providing residents choices of many items that they may not otherwise have access to. Pizzas, hamburgers, hot dogs, French fries and poutine can also be purchased for residents’ enjoyment. Special orders for clothing, electronics and other items can also be made through the Canteen, upon approval of a purchase request. Profits from the Canteen go to the Waseskun Community Fund, which is used to help pay for outings to traditional and cultural events.

8. Visits & outings.

Visits can be received from anyone on residents’ visitor’s list from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm on weekdays and from 8:30 am to 8:30 pm on weekends and holidays. Visitors must be screened for approval. We have lodging for the families of section 81 residents who have private family visit (PFV) program. Residents can on occasion have visits with family outside of Waseskun, but in the case of incarcerated residents, only if you have an ETA or UTA program. As residents advance in their healing, some become eligible for outings to the store, internet café, and organized day trips, to help prepare residents for gradual social reintegration and for them to acquire some social skills to facilitate this transition. Organized day trips include outings for traditional and cultural activities, special interests, and for personal development.