MakeWay Charitable Society - Northern Youth Leadership
July 7, 2020
Yellowknife, Canada
Job Type
$70,000-$80,000 depending on experience
Northwest Territories


Northern Youth Leadership (NYL) is a project on MakeWay Charitable Society’s shared platform. NYL brings together youth from across the NWT and the Canadian Arctic for remote land-based programming to develop leadership skills, life skills, emotional resilience, and to engage in positive risk-taking. MakeWay builds partnerships and solutions so nature and communities thrive together. The Shared Platform is home to over 60 projects working on community-led solutions that further MakeWay’s mission.

Position Overview

NYL is seeking a qualified and energetic self-starter to provide strategic and operational leadership as Project Director. The Project Director is responsible for all aspects of planning, implementing and evaluating NYL’s remote wilderness programming. This includes leading remote programming, planning camp logistics, assessing and managing risk, applying for funding, maintaining budgets, writing reports, building partnerships, and developing and adapting camp content. The Project Director is also responsible for mentoring and training youth staff through the Leadership Development Program.

The Project Director answers to a committed group of volunteer Steering Committee members and works closely with MakeWay Charitable Society to successfully implement and maintain operating, financial and administrative systems, and policies and procedures that support NYL programming.

How to Apply

With “Application for Project Director” in the subject line, please email your resume and cover letter to, by Sunday August 2nd, 2020.

As Northern Youth Leadership is a project of MakeWay Charitable Society, the selected candidate will be an employee of MakeWay. MakeWay is strongly committed to creating a diverse workplace environment and we welcome and encourage applications from the communities we serve. We are proud to be an equal opportunity employer. MakeWay will provide accommodation during all steps of the hiring process, upon request, to applicants with differing abilities. Please advise us if you need any accommodation.

Our sincere appreciation to all those expressing interest in the position, however, only those applicants invited for an interview will be contacted.

We recognize that many excellent candidates may not meet every requirement listed below, therefore if you are excited about this position and think you would do a great job and meet many of the requirements, we encourage you to apply!


Key Responsibility Areas:

Project Management and Administration

  • Provide strategic leadership for the planning and successful execution of NYL land-based programming including day-to-day operations and program monitoring and evaluation.
  • Ensure the financial health of the project by implementing a fundraising strategy to secure a strong, diversified and sustainable funding base through grant writing and funder stewardship.
  • Lead the preparation of the annual budget for Steering Committee and MakeWay approval and prepare regular budget updates.
  • Financial management including submission of expenses and invoices, review of financial reports and ensuring accurate documentation in line with MakeWay policy and procedures.
  • Develop and nurture positive working relationships with key stakeholders including program participants, parents, staff, volunteers, partners, community agencies and service providers.
  • Ensure compliance with all grant agreements and all policies and procedures of MakeWay Charitable Society.
  • Organize and implement full cycle HR process with employees, contractors and volunteers in accordance with MakeWay HR guidelines, including: recruitment, orientation, training, development, and performance management.
  • Facilitate access and connect youth with resources at the community, territorial and national level, assist with systems navigation, and advocate for youth.
  • Represent NYL, with responsibility for implementing effective branding, social media, media relations, and partnerships.

Land-Based Program Implementation

  • Direct and oversee program preparation including purchasing and packing camp supplies, liaising with participant guardians, and updating risk management documentation.
  • Supervise youth and deliver camp activities during remote wilderness programming lasting 1-3 weeks in length, often in remote areas.
  • Recruit and engage Elders and Indigenous Knowledge Holders in traditional cultural programming.
  • Demonstrate and instruct physical activities including hiking, paddling and swimming.
  • Assess and manage all risks while on camp including wildlife awareness, participant behaviour, and adverse weather conditions.
  • Responsible for the health and safety of all campers, volunteers, and staff including their social and emotional well-being.
  • Understand and implement all NYL policies and procedures and follow all safety guidelines associated with the camp and all program areas.
  • Direct and oversee the unpacking and cleaning of all supplies and ensuring that the storage unit is organized and easily accessible.



Education and Experience

  • 3-5 years’ experience managing non-profit projects in the North in a cost-efficient manner.
  • 3-5 years’ experience preparing grant proposals and working with donors including a proven fundraising track record.
  • 3-5 years’ experience working with youth from diverse backgrounds.
  • Bachelor’s degree in non-profit management, social work, child and youth care, outdoor education or other related fields, or equivalent experience.
  • Experience leading substantial projects and/or other organizations (budgets, strategy, accountability, etc.)
  • Experience with staff training and performance management.
  • Experience working on the land in remote areas under challenging environmental and insect conditions and experience working and camping in bear habitat.
  • Valid Driver’s License.
  • Valid Wilderness First Aid or Wilderness First Responder certification.
  • Ability to provide a criminal record and vulnerable sector check.
  • Experience working in remote northern communities is a significant asset.
  • Paddle Canada Lake Canoe Instructor Tandem Certification is an asset.
  • Paddle Canada Canoe Tripping Instructor Tandem and Solo Certification is an asset.
  • Mental Health First Aid and ASIST is an asset.

Project Director Skills and Attributes

  • Passion for working with youth in land-based contexts.
  • Organized, detail-oriented and efficient, with strong time management and prioritization skills.
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills.
  • Proficient in Microsoft Word, Excel, and Internet applications.
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team in a fast-paced setting.
  • Self-starter who takes initiative and can work with minimal supervision.
  • Strong networking skills.
  • Willingness to learn and ability to follow direction and structure.
  • Ability to interact tactfully, respectfully, and non-judgmentally with everyone (colleagues, youth and general public).
  • Knowledge of Northern social and cultural context.
  • Strong collaborative leadership and conflict resolution skills.
  • Ability to act as a positive role model and mentor to youth.
  • Ability to manage crisis and adverse situations with staff, youth and families.

Land-Based Skills and Attributes 

  • Experience with planning, logistics, and camp preparation of extended remote wilderness trips.
  • Ability to manage other people in a wilderness setting through exceptional skills such as risk management, decision-making, leadership and team building.
  • Ability to spend days or weeks on the land in unfavourable weather conditions.
  • Strong paddling skills.
  • Given the nature of the role, at times, this position requires additional working hours that cannot be foreseen or formally outlined.
  • Must have the physical ability to lead and participate in ALL camp activities which include, but are not limited to the following;
    • Outdoor adventure/camping trips lasting 1 – 3 weeks in duration
    • Full day hikes (up to 10 hours)
    • Full day paddling excursions (Portage canoeing)
  • Must be capable of lifting/carrying reasonably heavy loads up to a 50lbs (moving equipment when required, carrying First Aid and Emergency Equipment).
  • Be comfortable with traversing challenging and uneven terrain in unfavourable weather and insect conditions.
  • Have a good attitude, work ethic and endurance; camp days can be up to 12 hours long.

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