Welcome the Niagara Peninsula Aboriginal Area Management Board (NPAAMB) at 39 Geneva Street, an Indigenous Employment Training organization that provides skills development and training opportunities for Urban Indigenous Youth across Southern Ontario. NPAAMB brings a source of Indigenous representation to the Downtown core with the St. Catharines catchment area.

NPAAMB provides employment and training solutions to prepare urban Indigenous youth for a successful transition into the labour market by incorporating their core values into daily work. This organization allows for youth to have a source of stability and assistance with challenges while navigating the workforce. Some clients have experienced intergenerational traumas, lack of resources, lack of labour force attachment, and lack of cultural connections due to living in an urban setting. 

Urban Indigenous youth experience a multitude of barriers as it relates to their lived realities as they embark on developing a career that leads to a full life where they can thrive.  NPAAMB endeavours to assist youth in navigating these barriers through culturally-developed programs that validate Indigenous ways of being and knowing as the key to their success!

We were fortunate to speak with Youth Success Worker Naomi Regolini-Curd about NPAAMB, their backstory and future. Originally from Toronto, Naomi has a background in community development. Realizing her passion for aiding those in need, she had goals of becoming a social service worker and graduated from Centennial College with a Social Service Worker diploma in 2016. Naomi was invested in doing something meaningful and significant with the community’s youth. Naomi then enrolled in Niagara College’s Community and Justice Services program. An employment training career called to her and she has provided support for youth trying to accomplish their employment and training goals. One important value to Naomi is support. This is reflected through her dedication to community and career path. She shared that her favourite part of her job is seeing the impact that is being made for her clients and knowing that a real difference is being made. It has been the greatest reward. 

Downtown St. Catharines seemed like the best area for this branch of NPAAMB because of its central location. The proximity to the bus terminal makes it accessible to most and being in the vicinity of Brock University and Niagara College were a benefit as well. Being in a central location Downtown makes appointments and walk-ins easily accessible and welcomed.

Every year NPAAMB hosts and manages the “Opportunity Knocks’’ Employment Conference, where 100 youth from across southern Ontario are introduced to a wide range of employment opportunities, post-secondary options, while maintaining cultural components. This event aims to guide them in exploring potential career paths for their future. Youth Success Workers also frequent local high schools with an emphasis on apprenticeship support and acts as a link between their clients and business owners. Assisting with applications to post secondary schools is another service they offer students. Their services aren’t exclusive to students only though. The goal is to demonstrate to their clients that they are not confined to this region and give them the workplace skills to be confident wherever they go. The objective is to display options that their clients didn’t know existed. NPAAMB is open year round and offers constant services and provides referral support. They are approachable and want to provide guidance. 

A typical consultation will include an intake, creation of an action plan, and figuring out what additional supports are needed. These initiatives are used to create connections and eliminate barriers. Follow up meetings are also scheduled with the client. Helping youth navigate and find meaningful employment options is a key factor on how NPAAMB workers assist with career guidance. Career guidance would encompass determining what field might be best for you because of your hobbies and passions. Another service included is support with the entire job application process which includes resume help, mock interviews, in depth overviews, and how to approach follow up emails.  

NPAAMB services youth aged 15-30 years of age. If you are over 30 and seeking support, they can refer you to the organizations that will be able to help. 

We are honoured to see NPAAMB embark on this venture and encourage you to find out how you can offer support. 

Welcome Downtown!