A framework for how we work

Our Strands of Success stem from an ongoing reflection on the essential qualities of our work that produce our strongest relationships and greatest achievements. They are deeply woven into our operations, how we ensure our work is meeting real community needs, as well as in the design and delivery of our education and training programs.

Trust Building

Ensure that respect, honesty, transparency, humility, and integrity are fundamental to our engagements.

Meaningful Partnerships

Fully committed to collaborations built on open communication, mutual knowledge exchanges, and common goals.

Lasting Results

Consistently strive toward sustainable outcomes, with skills and benefits remaining within Indigenous communities for the long-term.

the Water First strands of success

To achieve and maintain our mandate, we strive to braid the three strands across all aspects of our work. They reflect our organizational values and are integrated into our everyday work. The strands are critical to our success and have led to a strong community up-take of our programs over the years.

In the words of our partners

Why we chose this image

A braid is three long strands woven together. It is a simple, but effective, representation to express the many complicated meanings and purposes of our work. The act of braiding strengthens the potential of a single strand by giving it support. An important property of the basic braid is that when you remove one strand it unlinks the other two.

Most Indigenous communities use the braid in practical and spiritual ways within daily life. A clear example of this is in sweetgrass, one of the four sacred medicines. Sweetgrass is always braided together. One strand is easily broken, but when many strands are braided together, it is nearly impossible to break.

The strands of a braid represent the strength of individuals and communities coming together. They also reflect Indigenous beliefs, or ways of interacting with the world, which are honesty, kindness, and love. We see the symbolism in the braid reflected in the way we operate as an organization.