Recently, some of our residents in the Crisis Program and I were brainstorming new art activities that we could engage in. One of the youth suggested that we could make dream catchers as a group. At the start of the evening we had a discussion about each youths experience with dream catchers and what they meant to them.
We spoke about their historical origins from the Ojibwe peoples and the traditional stories surrounding the creation of the dream catcher. Dream catchers are thought to be a sacred talisman to protect young children (and those who use them) from nightmares. The dream catcher is traditionally hung above the bed and it is believed that it attracts the dreams into it’s webbing. Nightmares are thought to be caught in the protective netting and burned up in the daylight, while the good dreams travel down the length of the feathers and onto the sleeper below.
Our youth enjoyed exchanging their own stories and versions of the tale while wrapping the wire hoop with cording. Although traditionally the hoop would be handmade from woven wood, we improvised with the materials most readily available to us.
The youth concentrated as they meticulously wove their corded web through the hoop, all the while making plans in their heads for the beads and feathers that they wished to dangle from the web. A couple hours later and the group was eager to hang their dream catchers in anticipation of the sweet dreams to follow.
Shared by Desiree, Youth Worker in our Crisis Program