Every month IIKELC is highlighting inspiring and uplifting stories from Nunavummiut across the territory. This month we are proud to celebrate Colby Hickey! Please enjoy his story below…
“My name is Colby Hickey. I am 22 years old and I grew up in Iqaluit Nunavut. I am currently working as a Youth Program Facilitator with the Government of Nunavut’s Mental Health division. For those who may not know, my role in the GN is to work with community partners to ensure that the needs of the youth are being met. We work towards this goal by collaborating with community partners and providing programming to fit the needs of youth in the community. This includes summer camps, community feasts, mindfulness groups, youth counselling, and so much more.
Throughout my childhood here in Nunavut I have interacted with countless people who have had major impacts on my life. Whether it was elders, teachers, sports coaches, or parents, the people of Iqaluit shaped me into the person I am today. However, amongst all these people there is one person who stands out from the rest and that set me on the path I am on today. This person was my high school counsellor.
During grade 11, I was having a very tough time in numerous aspects of my life including school, social life, and family. I sought out counselling services with the Youth Wellness Team early in the school year as my anxiety and stress levels were reaching a breaking point. Almost immediately after attending my first couple of sessions, I learned valuable skills that guided me through high school and ensured that I was taking care of my mental health along the way. These sessions also inspired me to look into different careers in the mental health field which eventually brought me back to Iqaluit to work in the same role as my high school counsellor.
I have been in this role for over a year now and the experience has been exactly what I was hoping it would be. Being recognized by youth in our community fills my heart with love and I cannot express how proud it makes me feel that the youth in our community are coming to see me just like I did 5 years ago. I hope by sharing my story that more youth will be inspired to take the same path that I did and return to help the community and territory thrive.”
– Colby Hickey, Iqaluit