On Thursday, July 6, 2023, Huu-ay-aht Chief Councillor John Jack, Councillors Brad Johnson, Edward R. Johnson, Stella Peters, Ḥaw̓iiḥ Councillor Theresa Nookemus, Child and Family Wellness Director, Shannon Zimmerman, and Executive Director, Karen Haugen met with Honourable Murray Rankin, Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation, and Josie Osbourne, MLA of Mid Island-Pacific Rim at the construction site of the Oomiiqsu (Aboriginal Mother Centre).
IWCO, a Nanaimo-based Construction Company, is building Oomiiqsu, and was available to answer questions about the project.
Oomiiqsu will provide culturally safe, wrap-around support to Huu-ay-aht, as well as other Nuu-chah-nulth women and children. Oomiiqsu will house the Child and Family Wellness Office, Oomiiqsu Office, 4 Transitional Housing Units, and housing for up to 48 women and children.
Oomiiqsu provides an alternative to the removal of children from the care of their mothers and ensures the safety of women and children (ages 0-12). Oomiiqsu will also house the Oomiiqsu Child Care Centre with 8 spaces for children, 36 months and under, and 16 spaces for children ages 30 months and over.
The Oomiiqsu project is well underway. To date, gridlines have been set, and the bulk excavation of the building has been completed. Upcoming work will include forming footings, installation of the site fence and signage.
This project is a partnership between Huu-ay-aht First Nations, BC Housing, Ministry of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation and Ministry of Child and Family Development.
Highway 4 closures due to the Cameron Bluffs forest fire have impacted construction timelines.
The anticipated occupancy date has been moved from August 2024 to December 2024.
Currently, IWCO is hiring for Carpenters, Apprentices, and Labourers for the Oomiiqsu site.
To apply online, visit IWCD.ca.
Contact info: email@example.com or call 1-250-802-4390
Recommendation 26 of Social Services Report : click here