BYTE is super excited to introduce Calandra Roberts, she was awarded $1500 from the BYTE Leadership Fund to go to the Dreamcatchers Aboriginal Youth Conference at MacEwan University from October 12-13. The conference had a number of cool workshops including Blanket Exercise, Crime Scene Investigation, Acupuncture, Positive Police Interactions and Powwow Fitness to name a few. Check out Calandra’s favourite workshops from her time at the conference below! 

Claiming Identity through Story and Dance: This was my favourite session of them all! Individuals from the circle would tell their stories and they would really hit home. Recognizing everybody has their own way to express feelings and what way is best for them to not let the past have a say on your future, and whenever you think you have it bad there’s always other people who are going through the same thing so don’t feel alone. It’s good to release how you feel instead of letting it all build up and let it negatively affect you.

Empowering Youth Through Building Self-Esteem and Resilience: Everybody in the group got a card out of the deck, whoever got the Ace had to be treated better than everybody else in the room, the people who got the 2 from the deck had to treated with the least respect. This activity really impacted everyone because you can’t treat one another less or better than the other. Everybody has their own story and are dealing with different things. Always treat everybody with the same respect.

We also did an activity without words, where we had to solve an easy situation without communication. When you are not communicating to others that “Yes, you can get the job done!” it’s going to be frustrating because when you aren’t communicating, an easy situation in the first place becomes aggravating. It’s always best to communicate to figure out the situation rather than let it negatively impact you.

Thank you for supporting me to to go to this conference. It has impacted me greatly and has made me recognize self-worth and to take my time to acknowledge my surroundings and to realize how lucky I am to have the family and friends I have and not to take any of it for granted.


The Dreamcatcher Aboriginal Youth Conference takes place every fall at MacEwan University in Edmonton. “The idea that dreamcatchers accept the good and ward off the bad in the lives of youth has shaped the Dreamcatcher Aboriginal Youth Conference. The Dreamcatcher conference’s message is of self-empowerment – Dream, Learn, Achieve.” For more information about the conference visit their event website here.