Our Impact

Changing lives and communities

Spirit North empowers youth to learn, grow, thrive and strengthen their communities through sport. Our programs have inspired life-changing transformations and meaningful community impact.

Stronger Schools

  • 98% attendance on Spirit North school ski days (versus 65% regularly)
  • 97% of students “looked forward to Spirit North ski days.”
  • Suspension numbers drop after Spirit North ski days.
  • 100% of educators say they would like Spirit North to return to their schools.

Better Health

  • Healthy, active lifestyles can help to prevent numerous health risks later in life.
  • 90% of Spirit North students learned that “exercise can help me feel better inside.”
  • 90% wanted to exercise more after participating in Spirit North programs.
  • 65% reported a change in eating and drinking habits after the nutrition presentation.
  • 80% of educators reported “positive changes in student behaviour” after participating in Spirit North.

Cultural Pride

  • Multi-community events promote cultural exchange and understanding. A recent Spirit North event featured Powwow drum and dance songs and Métis jig activities.
  • 95% of students “feel like I matter” after a day with Spirit North.
  • 95% “feel included and like I belong” while participating in our programs.
  • 89% “feel important” after a day with Spirit North.

Students speak out

  • 99% enjoyed ski days with Spirit North.
  • 93% “feel supported” while participating.
  • 89% felt “happy” after a ski day with Spirit North.
  • 87% learned that “when I try hard, I can accomplish something.”
  • 84% were “in a good mood” after a Spirit North ski day.
  • 76% “felt proud of my new skills” after a ski day.
  • 72% felt “confident” after a ski day.

Activity for Everyone

  • Spirit North has equipment that enables people of all physical abilities to experience cross-country skiing, including those in wheelchairs.

Community Legacy

  • Spirit North can train individuals to become NCCP-certified community coaches.
  • Communities often purchase their own cross-country ski equipment, including skis and track setting equipment, after Spirit North programs.
  • Eight athletes from Spirit North communities qualified for the 2018 Alberta Winter Games team.

Season report

Last season, Spirit North visited over 30 schools and engaged more than 6,000 Indigenous children and youth.

Learn more in our 2016-2017 Annual Report.

In the Media

  • 2017
  • 2018

“Spirit North reveals trail for indigenous health and fitness”
Rocky Mountain Outlook

“Historic Nakoda ski team debuts in Kananaskis”
Rocky Mountain Outlook

“Sunchild Students Take on Ski Fit”
Outdoor Life

“Sunchild students take on cross-country skiing”
The Mountaineer

“Northern Alberta ski race teaches First Nation children lesson in determination”
CBC Edmonton

“Enoch Cree students learn benefit of cross-country skiing”
Windspeaker News

“Two-time Olympic medalist Beckie Scott brings cross country skiing and happiness to Alberta communities”
We Are Alberta

“Olympic medalist Beckie Scott expands cross country skiing program in aboriginal schools”
Ski Trax Magazine

“Kikino puts the Ski in Skilled learning”
Lac La Biche Post

“Trail Blazers”
Ft McMurray Today

“Sunchild: Students have Outdoor Learning Experience”
The Mountaineer

“Kehewin students learn the joys of skiing”
Bonnyville Nouvelle

“Olympian’s skiing lessons pure gold for First Nations students”
Edmonton Journal

“Children who ski are better at school”
The Sportskid Whisperer

“Beckie Scott Leads Star-Studded Lineup of Canadian Athletes Ready to Inspire First Nations Students with Ski Day at Canmore Nordic Centre”

Spirit North Receives Dynamic Boost to Support Indigenous Youth Health & Well-Being through 2020

Spirit North

Helping Indigenous youth focus on health and wellness

CTV Calgary News


Indigenous Youth take part in Spirit North BARHE PIÎCHIYABI Loppet

Spirit North

The Sport Law & Strategy Group partners with Spirit North to support Indigenous children and youth

Sport Law & Strategy Group

Connect. Empower. Inspire.

“An amazing way to introduce youth to cross-country skiing in such a positive way!”
School Guidance Counsellor