saiya-awardsThe SAIYAwards recognize Indigenous youth in Southern Alberta who demonstrates a strong desire and commitment to achieve their goals. These awards are to encourage confidence and help create Indigenous youth ambassadors for the future. For the first time ever in Southern Alberta these awards will recognize and support indigenous youth 13 – 21 years who are contributing to a solution. Recipients will be given an award as well as $1,000 towards future goals and ideas. They will represent themselves and the SAIYAwards as ambassadors for the year. The SAIYAwards theme will be “The Elders are Watching” and will celebrate Indigenous youth who are making a difference in their communities, developing healthy solutions and growing into successful leaders and ambassadors for Canada. The goal of the SAIYAwards is to recognize the amazing contributions Indigenous youth are making to the community.

What are the SAIYAwards?

The Southern Alberta Indigenous Youth Awards (SAIYA) will be the first awards celebration of its kind in Alberta. The program will celebrate the accomplishments of Indigenous youth by bringing both urban and rural communities together to build a stronger society. While acknowledging the unique struggles facing Indigenous youth, the SAIYAwards will highlight the achievements of these youth who are working towards a successful future.

Who can be nominated for a SAIYAward?

Nominations for the awards are open to all Southern Albertans who identify as First Nation, Metis or Inuit between the ages of 13-21 (includes Calgary to the US border). Selected Indigenous Elders will choose the final three winners in 12 categories and the final decisions will be made by a committee of sponsors and community partners.

The 12 categories of the SAIYAwards:

  • Community Leadership
  • Volunteerism
  • Sports
  • Contemporary Arts
  • Traditional Arts
  • Visionary
  • Hope
  • Aspire
  • Shine
  • Academic Achievement
  • Language
  • Entrepreneur

Eligibility requirements

  • First Nation, Métis or Inuit heritage
    Between 13 – 21 years of age
    Live within Southern Alberta which includes Calgary to the US Border

The nominations of deceased persons will not be accepted.

Selection Process

A committee of Elders will review all of the nominations and choose the top 3 for each category. These 3 will be given to the sponsor of the award to make the final decision. The winners will be contacted by November 15th, 2016. Each winner will be asked to make their own short video of acceptance, which should include their vision and inspiration as well as what this recognition will do to contribute to their future.

View and download the nomination form at:

For more information about nominating an Indigenous youth, sponsorship opportunities or tickets, please contact:

Patty Fraser at