Marks Habitat for Humanity Canada’s First Project On-Reserve
TORONTO, June 19, 2015 – Flying Dust First Nation and Habitat for Humanity Canada host a special All Chiefs Build today at Flying Dust, located 300 km northwest of Saskatoon. This milestone build marks the start of a successful partnership between Chief Richard Gladue, his Council and Habitat for Humanity Lloydminster.
In recognition of National Aboriginal Day, Flying Dust First Nation welcomes Chiefs and dignitaries from across Canada as part of the inaugural on-reserve build of a 10-unit Elders’ lodge. Chief Richard Gladue of Flying Dust First Nation, Chiefs from Saskatchewan First Nations, and Gary Vidal, Mayor for the City of Meadow Lake, come together in solidarity and commemorate the historic partnership between Flying Dust and Habitat.
“We are very proud to partner with Habitat to find sustainable and affordable housing solutions for our community,” says Chief Richard Gladue. “This project will enable us to provide suitable housing for our Elders and assist young families in realizing their own dreams of homeownership.”
The Elders’ lodge, named “Kikinaw” the Cree word for “Our Home,” is an example of how First Nations and Habitat can partner together to achieve safe, decent housing for all. Over the past eight years, Habitat’s Aboriginal Housing Program has built over 100 homes for First Nation families.
“We congratulate Habitat Lloydminster and Flying Dust First Nation on forging a partnership for better living,” says Mark Rodgers, President and CEO, Habitat for Humanity Canada. “We hope this exemplary project will be an inspiration to other Aboriginal communities as they explore possible solutions to housing challenges. Habitat’s Aboriginal Housing Program has made significant strides and envision over 250 Aboriginal partner homes by 2020.”
Unlike other Canadian communities, a “housing continuum” does not exist on First Nation land. The Elders’ lodge, which broke ground in May, will provide sustainable housing solutions. Once the lodge is built, the homes currently occupied by Elders can be retrofitted for other families in the community, helping to improve living conditions through good housing and enabling access to a significant asset that would be otherwise out of reach.
In addition to providing appropriate housing for the Elders of Flying Dust, this project creates opportunities for Flying Dust First Nation youth to obtain training and skills in building and ensures the homes are both adequately built and meets the needs of this community.
Since its inception in 2007, Habitat’s Aboriginal Housing Program aims to address housing affordability issues faced by Aboriginal families in Canada.
In 2011, Habitat signed an agreement with the Assembly of First Nations (AFN) with the ultimate goal of increasing First Nations’ involvement in Habitat projects and enhancing opportunities for First Nations people to further their knowledge and skills applicable to all dimensions of housing, while adding to the housing stock.
Habitat’s Aboriginal Housing Program is made possible by founding partner Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation and supporters Enbridge, RBC Foundation and Tachane Foundation. For more information, visit www.habitat.ca/ahp
About Habitat for Humanity Canada
Founded in 1985, Habitat for Humanity Canada is a national, non-profit organization working towards a world where everyone has a safe and decent place to live. With the help of over 63,000 volunteers every year and 57 affiliate organizations from coast to coast, their mission is to mobilize volunteers and community partners in building affordable housing and promoting homeownership as a means to break the cycle of poverty in Canada and around the world. Globally, Habitat for Humanity Canada provides strategic support through grants, technical support and volunteer engagement in an effort to serve the 1.7 billion people in need of access to shelter. For more information, please visit www.habitat.ca.
SOURCE Habitat for Humanity Canada
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