Blog Archives

Aaron – Assets for Success Program

AaronDECSA is proud to announce that Aaron, a client in the Assets for Success program, has been hired at Tim Hortons; and after just two weeks, the store owner was so impressed that he increased his responsibilities. Aaron has gained a lot of self-confidence and is happy to be working at Tim Hortons. He was also able to obtain new work shoes free of charge through our partnership with Mark’s.

In addition, since coming to DECSA and participating in the program, Aaron discovered he has a passion for heavy duty equipment operating. To support Aaron’s long-term goal, the Assets for Success team has linked him with High Velocity Equipment Training and is assisting him to obtain funding to attend school there in the future.

Congratulations, Aaron!

Career Fair at Alberta Indigenous Games 2015 – Register Now

AIG - Career Fair Poster, 2015We are inviting employers, community groups and agencies to participate in our Career Fair at the Alberta Indigenous Games, which take place on July 14 & 15 at Rundle Park in Edmonton.

This year’s Career Fair aims to connect employers and employees, build new partnerships, and share the wealth of information and resources available in our community.

The Alberta Indigenous Games attract people from near and far to gather in the culture of spirit, sport and excellence.

To register your organization for participation in the Career Fair, please contact DECSA at (780) 474-2500 or contact Velma Bellerose at You can also find the registration form here: AIG – Career Fair Registration Form, 2015

Nothing Beats Confidence!

We are honoured to have Confidence Coach Shirley Borrelli join us here at DECSA (11515 71 Street) on April 30th at 2pm. Shirley will be presenting on how to increase your chances of getting hired by projecting confidence, even if you don’t feel it! All are welcome to attend.11009082_466971186787882_1958501650160680295_n

The DECSAmobile!

Clients and staff gathered on the front lawn of DECSA on Tuesday to watch the arrival of a generous gift from ATB Financial: a cargo van! The van, which even features DECSA’s logo, was driven up to the front of the building by staff from ATB Financial, and presented to DECSA’s CEO Deborah Rose by Sandra Huculak from ATB.

DECSA will be able to use the van for a variety of purposes, including trips to the Edmonton Food Bank to pick up groceries for clients.

Thank you ATB Financial!


5 Tips on Goal Setting

The clock has struck midnight, the ball has dropped, and a whole new list of New Years resolutions has been made. Whether your dreams for 2015 are big or small, here’s a list of 5 ways to ensure you achieve your goals!

1. Choose an attainable goal

We all have dreams, but some are more realistic than others. If your goal is to become a famous singer in 2015, but you have a terrible voice, you may want to reconsider your goal. This doesn’t mean you have to avoid the music industry altogether, it just means that your goal should suit your ability and talents.

2. Plan the path

The easy part is coming up with a goal; the harder part is actually getting the wheels in motion! To make it more manageable, break your resolution down into smaller goal and develop a strategy on how you will reach each step. If your long term goal is to lose thirty pounds, for example, you could start by planning on losing the weight in five pound segments, which you will achieve by going to the gym three times a week. By setting yourself mini goals along the way, not only will your final one will seems less daunting, you’ll also have a detailed path in place to keep you on track.

3. Establish a timeline

Decide when you want your dream to become a reality, and “check in” along the way. That way you can measure how close to success you are, and whether or not you need to re-evaluate some steps in your plan. You’ll become more motivated by giving yourself a deadline.

4. Create a visual reminder

Sometimes we make goals, and then forget all about them. If your goal is to save enough money for a holiday to Paris, consider keeping a photo of the Eiffel tower in your wallet. That way, every time you go to use your credit card on an impulse buy, the promise of your dream vacation is staring you in the face! You can also write your goal down, or tell a friend to help you stay accountable.

5. Don’t stress!

It’s great to have dreams and aspirations, but try not to obsess over it too much. Remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day so if you expect a change to happen overnight, you are only setting yourself up for disappointment!



Is a career change in the cards for you this year? DECSA offers a variety of pre-employment programs and services. We also have a Community Resource Centre available for job search. For more information, call 780-474-2500.






Fall foliage

We hope everyone had a safe and special long weekend!

Here’s what DECSA staff had to say when asked the question, “What are YOU thankful for?”

Turkey. Good Health. Happy children. Having a job. Kettle bells. Supportive family and friends. For my family. For my career. For my home. For my health. For just being me. Family, friends, my job, my mom. Having a safe, warm home. My health, my sense. Laughter, seasons, flowers. Slurpees, food, candy, chocolate. My children. My job. My health. My lovely friends. My great family! The sun shining through my windows. Health, family, education. Opportunity. To be surrounded by such bright , ambitious people. Health. Team work. Family. Security. Stability. Life, family, friends, work, co-workers, opportunities, social media, Edmonton community, natural environment (Edmonton parks), sports and recreational facilities, Winspear Centre, churches, schools, galleries, city events and festivals, the Mayfield Dinner Theatre, shopping malls, medicentres, hospitals. I am thankful fro wildlife and birds and my ability to photograph them. Being part of an awesome team. My family. My home. My job. My friends.

So much to be thankful for!

And now, we are back, open, and ready to continue serving the community!


You Can Teach an Old Dog New Tricks

Pyschologist Gwen Villebrun

Pyschologist Gwen Villebrun

We’ve all been in relationships, romantic or otherwise, that made us cringe inwardly. Overly close, painfully distant, perpetually irritating, frighteningly explosive – whatever the problems were, none of us want to experience those hurts again. But creating healthy relationships can be challenging and confusing.

Our relationships are central to our mental well-being. During Mental Health Week, registered psychologist Gwen Villebrun visited DECSA to discuss healthy relationships. Gwen explained that as children we developed ways to handle the challenges of living in our families. For example, a girl with a very angry mother might become very quiet and submissive to avoid conflict. The patterns we created as children, though, often do not work well when we become adults. If that quiet girl doesn’t become more assertive as she grows up, others may take advantage of her vulnerability.

The Canadian Red Cross, the Canadian Federation for Sexual Health, and the Edmonton Police Service paint a picture of healthy relationships. Here are a few concepts they mention.

Relating healthily with another person involves:

  • Open, honest communication: In healthy relationships, you address concerns and conflicts honestly.
  • A variety of feelings: In healthy relationships, you may feel happiness, sadness, excitement, disappointment, anger, and other emotions.
  • Support: In healthy relationships, you support and affirm the other person.

Relating healthily does not involve:

  • Physical violence: Hitting, punching, kicking, slapping, pushing, etc.are not healthy ways to relate to others.
  • Verbal and emotional abuse: Threatening, insulting, intimidating, ridiculing, constantly monitoring, and stalking are not healthy ways to relate to others.

“You know that saying, ‘Can’t teach an old dog new tricks’?” Gwen asked during her talk. “Now we know about neuroplasticity.” Our brains are neuroplastic, which means that our brains can change at any age. You can teach an old dog new tricks! No matter how dysfunctional our childhood families were, and no matter how long we’ve lived out those dysfunctions as adults, we can still learn better ways of relating. But changing isn’t easy. It takes honesty, awareness, effort and consistency.

For anyone who wants to learn more about developing healthy relationships, Gwen recommendations these books:

  • Leaving the Enchanted Forest
    By: Stephanie Covington and Liana Beckett
    (Available at and
  • Codependent No More
    By: Melodie Beattie
    (Available at the Edmonton Public Library and
  • The Dance of Intimacy
    By: Harriet Lerner
    (Available at the Edmonton Public Library and

DECSA wishes you the best in your relationships with your family, friends, and coworkers.