The Native Women’s Association of Canada (NWAC) is founded on the collective goal to enhance, promote, and foster the social, economic, cultural and political well-being of First Nations and Métis women within First Nation, Métis and Canadian societies. NWAC is an aggregate of thirteen Native women’s organizations from across Canada and was incorporated as a non-profit organization in 1974.
To help empower women by being involved in developing and changing legislation which affects them, and by involving them in the development and delivery of programs promoting equal opportunity for Aboriginal women.
The principles or objectives of the Native Women’s Association of Canada are as follows:
- to be the national voice for Native women;
- to address issues in a manner which reflects the changing needs of Native women in Canada;
- to assist and promote common goals towards self-determination and self-sufficiency for Native peoples in our role as mothers and leaders;
- to promote equal opportunities for Native women in programs and activities;
- to serve as a resource among our constituency and Native communities;
- to cultivate and teach the characteristics that are unique aspects of our cultural and historical traditions;
- to assist Native women’s organizations, as well as community initiatives in the development of their local projects; and to advance issues and concerns of Native women; and to link with other Native organizations with common goals.
We have a vision of Aboriginal communities where all individuals have an opportunity to develop their talents in order to achieve their full potential.
We see communities where all people can lead healthy lifestyles by maintaining balance in their spiritual, emotional, mental and physical health.
To build a sense of pride and a strong identification of who they are. They constantly seek to broaden their knowledge of the things that affect them and their relationship with the environment and the land.
We see communities where all our people have an opportunity to learn our history and traditional ways while attaining a high level of academic education with children to be proud of who they are and to be comfortable in a predominantly non-Aboriginal environment.
We see a community where all Aboriginal people accept and exercise their responsibilities to contribute to a strong community. We also envision an Aboriginal community that understands and respects the diversity and uniqueness of all Aboriginal nations.
A community which communicates with each other and works in unity with all Aboriginal organizations to ensure a strong voice in maintaining Aboriginal and treaty rights. This is a community which assumes responsibility in selecting leaders who will be youth and following generations.
Finally, we see an Aboriginal community which determines how our natural resources are utilized and can co-exist in co-operation with society – free of racism and discrimination.