Learn more about Culturally Modified Trees through this video!

“Sacred Cedar: The Cultural and Archaeological Significance of Culturally Modified Trees” is a report of the Pacific Salmon Forests Project and the David Suzuki Foundation, written by Arnoud H. Stryd and Vicki Feddema. It explains that First Nations have utilized cedar for at least 3,000 years.  Wood- and bark-working tools found in archaeological sites helped discover this.

The following video features the CMT that lays in Anacla near the entry to Pachena Bay. The intro states that “thousands of years ago, when the Huu-ay-aht people fished, hunted and carved their history into the cedar trees overlooking the Pacific Ocean, theirs were the only human voices. They had no idea that, one day, a giant ant would descend from the sky, pick up a chunk of one of those cedars and deliver it to their village…” Find out more about this story here:

“Indigenous Public Safety and Policing Forum” was a step toward change for indigenous peoples

The Assembly of First Nations (AFN) Indigenous Public Safety and Policing Forum took place on March 30th,  in Regina, Saskatchewan, bringing together more than 80 delegates and speakers, including AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde and The Honourable Ralph Goodale, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness.

“This forum brought together many of the parties required to create justice systems that work for our people and communities,” said AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde.  “I am encouraged by the many community driven approaches underway.  Our people will continue to lead the way in developing creative solutions built upon our traditional values and First Nations justice systems with a goal of improving public safety and policing for First Nations and others across Canada.”

“Undertaking this meaningful conversation with our Indigenous and public safety partners on issues related to gaps in  services in the criminal justice system, community safety and policing is a step in the right direction toward fulfilling the Government of Canada’s commitment to a renewed relationship with Indigenous Peoples,” said Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Minister Ralph Goodale.

The Forum featured discussions on Gaps in Services in the Criminal Justice System; Community Safety Plans and Protocols; Policing; and connections to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action.  There was a commitment from the federal government to renew, support and, based on direction from First Nations, revise where necessary the First Nations policing Program.

The Forum brought together Indigenous organizations, federal and provincial policing organizations and other organizations to begin a dialogue on working towards improved public safety and policing for Indigenous communities and people.  Participants included representatives from the Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, the Métis National Council, the Native Women’s Association of Canada, the RCMP, Office of the Correctional Investigator, First Nation Chiefs of Police, the Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations, the Indigenous Bar Association, Correctional Services Canada and others.

The Assembly of First Nation is the national organization representing First Nation citizens in Canada.  Follow AFN on Twitter @AFN_Comms, @AFN_Updates and visit the AFN website at www.afn.ca.

Fresh Food Program is on hold

The Fresh Food Box is currently on hold. The program is a non-profit alternative fresh food distribution system that started in May 2015 and was paid for, in part, through a one-time funding opportunity that the Nation received called the LNG Generations Fund.

We are currently working on ways to locate funding to continue the program for another year and during this year develop a longer term solution.

We will advise citizens as soon as we have further information.

 

Fresh Food Box Program on Hold

 

 

AFN National Chief says that Federal Budget is a significant step in closing the gap for First Nations

The federal budget is a significant step in closing the gap in the quality of life between First Nations peoples and Canadians and beginning the process of reconciliation, Assembly of First Nations (AFN) National Chief Perry Bellegarde says.

“The budget begins to address decades of underfunding and neglect, which have perpetuated a growing gap in the quality of life between First Nations and other Canadians,” said AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde.  “This budget invests in important priorities for First Nations and all Canadians. Investments in housing, clean water, education, and child welfare will bring long-needed relief for those living in third world conditions, and build a stronger economy for everyone.”

The 2016 federal budget unveiled today is an historic $8.4 billion over 5 years in investments in Indigenous issues. It has committed to eliminate the 2% cap. It also allocates investments in First Nations Education; Infrastructure and Housing; Green Infrastructure on Reserve and clean drinking Water; First Nations child and family services; Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Strategy; Aboriginal Languages Initiative; Health; Justice; Fishing and Environment. The federal budget also commits to engage with First Nations on a new long-term fiscal relationship.

“Creating the conditions for First Nations peoples to succeed, whether they live in the north, on reserve or in urban areas, is the best economic stimulus plan for Canada,” said National Chief Bellegarde.  “It will add billions to the economy and save billions more in social costs while creating a stronger, more just and prosperous country for us all.”

Watch the webinar: “First Nations Social Innovation and Social Finance; First Nation Access to Credit”

On Tuesday, March 22  at 1:00 pm (EDT) The Assembly of First Nations will be hosting a webinar entitled “First Nations Social Innovation and Social Finance;  First Nation Access to Credit”, with speakers from Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) and Forrest Green, a Licensed Credit Bureau.  Highlighted are invited testimonials by partnering First Nations and First Nation financial organizations. The following have been invited: Pic River First Nation,  the Atlantic Policy Congress, Tribal Whi-Chi-Way-Win Capital Corporation (TWCC) and the Aboriginal Savings Corporation of Canada (ABSCAN)

About this Webinar:
Join us for this webinar as speakers discuss First Nation exclusion from the credit rating system, its impact on borrowing and the implications for economic development, employment, housing  and access to capital for First Nation individuals, corporations and governments.  A series of early adopters of the initiative will discuss First Nation community, political and corporate perspectives on this issue.

To join the webinar on Tuesday, March 22nd, click on the link below:
https://livestream.com/afn/fnaccesstocredit.

About the Speakers
Randy Jenkins  is a Senior Analyst with the Office of the Indian Registrar in the Department of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada.  He formally held positions as Senior Economic Analyst within the Community Infrastructure Branch and Senior Advisor within the Lands Branch where the credit initiative was first developed.

Blair McMurren is Director of Social Innovation in the Strategic and Service Policy Branch at Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), where he is responsible for policy development as well as outreach and engagement related to the Government of Canada’s commitments to explore the potential of social finance.  He has recently helped to launch an Innovation Lab that will develop and test innovative solutions to policy, program, and service delivery challenges across the ESDC portfolio, in collaboration with other emerging public innovation hubs and labs.

Murray Rowe Junior is the owner and President of Forrest Green registered credit bureau that is partnered with TransUnion a Consumer Credit Reporting Agency and Dun & Bradstreet a Global Business Credit Bureau.  For over 20 years, Murray has been supporting private and public sector clients by implementing technology solutions using credit reporting agency data, secure web portals, training, eLearning, automated workflow and intelligent documents. Murray has provided expert testimony to the House of Commons and Senate on credit issues impacting Indigenous Peoples.

Invited:  
Garland Moses, a member of the Ojibways of the Pic River First Nation, is employed as a Capital Housing Manager and is charged with the responsibilities of Capital and Housing responsibilities. Over the past twenty years, Garland has brought improvement to a new Water Treatment Plant which is currently extracting its water supply from ground source that is being treated with slow sand with an ozonation treatment system. In addition, Garland has assisted in the development of a new Daycare centre located in the community which is now known as Children and Family Learning Centre.  To support the overall need in wellness of the community and the surrounding area, Garland has been instrumental in the capital development of the Holistic Treatment Centre, the Biibaaban Healing Lodge. His latest support to the community infrastructure is the completion of a new office to support the Anishinabek Police Service. With the assistance of the Housing Committee support by our leadership and management team, the housing program has grown up to 160 residential units which includes a Senior Complex as well as a Six Complex which was recently completed in March 2010.  With the completion of the Six Plex, the Housing Program has completed a major part of the Ojibways of the Pic River Ten Year completion which addresses the need to construct up to forty residential units. Today, along with the Home Improvement Program, which has completed renovations to nineteen of existing residential structures, another eighteen units are currently in process and are slated for completion by the end of March 2011.  Garland was involved in the genesis of this initiative and continues to work through access to credit in the area of housing in Pic River.

John Paul is the Executive Director of the Atlantic Policy Congress of First Nations Chiefs Secretariat in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia.  Taking direction from the Atlantic Chiefs through frequent All Chiefs Forums and Executive Chiefs Meetings, Mr. Paul provides policy analysis and strategic advice on a wide range of policy issues facing First Nations in Atlantic Canada and Eastern Quebec. The APC Secretariat’s mandate is to research, analyze and develop alternatives to federal policies affecting its member First Nation communities. Mr. Paul has a Bachelor of Arts in Community Studies and received his Master of Public Administration in Financial Management from Halifax’s Dalhousie University in 1982. A dedicated advocate for First Nations, Mr. Paul has worked toward positive change for First Nations communities in diverse policy areas for more than 25 years.

Chief Shining Turtle has been the Chief of Whitefish River First Nation for 11 years and is family man with a strong desire to help his Community move forward. As an Engineer by trade, the Chief has helped his Community secure over 30-million dollars in new infrastructure funding; his drive and determination is extraordinary. Chief Shining Turtle’s education includes Bachelor of Engineering from Lakehead University, Diploma of Technology from Seneca College, a Technical Leadership Certificate from the University of Florida, and a Water Systems Supply Certificate from California State University.

Jean Vincent, is the Vice-Grand Chief of the Huron-Wendat First Nation.  For the past 22 years, Chief Vincent has been the President and General Manager of the Native Commercial Credit Corporation (SOCCA), which provides commercial financing to Quebec Aboriginal-controlled businesses in the start-up or expansion phase.  He is also President and General Manager of the Aboriginal Savings Corporation of Canada (ABSCAN) offering Aboriginal peoples corporate bonds adapted to their needs; and financing in the form of secured loans in the real estate, institutional and commercial sectors. ABSCAN was incorporated on October 21, 2005 under Part II of the Canada Corporations Act to serve as a fund-gathering medium offering Aboriginal peoples control over their economic development.

Brenda Zurba is the Vice President of Sales, Marketing & Development for Tribal Wi-Chi-Way-Win Capital Corporation (TWCC), a Winnipeg-based Aboriginal Capital Corporation. She brings 17 years of experience in marketing, sales, sales management and executive leadership as well as a post-secondary education in psychology, commerce and marketing. Brenda was employed with a publicly traded, multi-billion dollar organization for more than 10 years and led a nationally specialized team that consulted with small businesses across Canada to develop their annual and semi-annual marketing strategies. Prior to joining TWCC, Brenda served as the National Sales and Marketing Director for Telpay Incorporated, where she managed customer support, marketing operations, as well as multi-channel sales of 24 million transactions worth $14 billion annually. Brenda is a designated member of the Canadian Professional Sales Association, which is a national institute that provides guidelines and professional standards in the sales and marketing profession. At the 2013 Social Enterprise World Forum in Calgary, Brenda was a speaker on the “Building Indigenous Social Enterprise” panel.