First Nations

As part of the MAPLE project, ADRA committed to providing financial support to the Wiikwemkoong Outdoor Adventure Leadership Experience (OALE). OALE is an intensive youth leadership preparation program designed to promote culture and community, and help youth develop resilience and well-being as protective factors for their personal growth and development.


Life Is Like A Canoe Trip from ADRA Canada

Through a ten-day, 140 kilometer canoe trip, youth learn valuable life skills such as leadership, perseverance, and the ability to work together. In the summer of 2017, the program was in dire need of specialized outdoor expedition equipment to accommodate the rough terrain of Northern Ontario. Through its charitable network, ADRA arranged and then donated a significant amount of money toward the purchase of canoes, tents, and other outdoor equipment.

Team members from ADRA not only donated money, they also donated time. An ADRA team member went on one of the canoe trips with the youth and created an amazing 30 minute video of the experience. The IGNITE Team wishes to thank ADRA for its commitment to the MAPLE Project and particularly for its generosity of time and money toward the OALE Program.

ADRA Canoe Trip on Vimeo

One of our member projects included reducing the electricity consumption in the local community arena.  As we collaborated with the project team, they told us it was also important to fix any electrical issues as we encountered them.

 

It’s always exciting when one of our members gets a great win, and the Arena project was a great win for the community. The Arena got amazing new lights for the entire building. This lighting retrofit reduced the annual power cost attributed to lighting by nearly 70%. By working closely with the electrical contractor and the project team, we vastly improved the lighting quality throughout, but particularly over the bleachers and ice pad.  After the lighting change, there were areas of the ice pad with at least twice as much light quality, which virtually eliminated previously dimly lit areas on the ice surface. We also worked closely with the electrical contractor to fix a few nagging electrical issues. All this was done with a neutral impact to the member’s operating budget. Feedback from the community has been very positive.

 

Taking control of aging infrastructure is a challenge for any organization. What IGNITE offers its members is a means of simplifying the process to address the present issues affecting public sector infrastructure.  IGNITE provides access to all the resources required to not only get the job done presently but to future-proof the asset by ensuring the long-term operating costs are considered for every aspect of the project.

 

“As soon as you open your mind to doing things differently, the doors of opportunity practically fly off their hinges.”

― Jay Abraham, The Sticking Point Solution


As part of the MAPLE project, IGNITE committed to providing Wiikwemkoong youth with hockey equipment through the Wiikwemkoong Minor Hockey Association.

An IGNITE Team member found a used sporting equipment bank in Calgary who was very interested in supporting the MAPLE project. In late 2017, Comrie Sports Equipment Bank sent 22 pallets of gently used sports equipment by truck to Regina. Comrie provided all this equipment and transportation to Regina for free! Once the equipment arrived in Regina, IGNITE arranged with Manitoulin Transport to pick up the equipment. Manitoulin, which is a resource member to the IGNITE Program, generously donated a portion of the shipping cost to help this project become a reality.

A few months later, Wiikwemkoong Minor Hockey Association held a large event in the rink to make this equipment available to the local community. This initiative was only successful because of the generous financial support of Comrie Sports Equipment Bank and Manitoulin Transport.

The IGNITE Team is very proud of what was accomplished through this team effort, and we trust the community youth will enjoy many hockey games with this equipment!

As a part of the ASPIRE Initiative, IGNITE continued its collaboration with ADRA to create The MAPLE Project to work with the youth at Wiikwemkoong.  MAPLE stands for Motivating and Promoting Lifelong Enrichment which is exactly what the project endeavors to do for Canadian First Nation youth.  As the project grows, the IGNITE Team will continue to post updates on the exciting story’s surrounding this project.  If you would like to get involved and/or help, please visit the ADRA website.

 

For more information on the IGNITE ASPIRE Initiative,  contact us by phone or email.

Walter Manitowabi, Director of the First Nations Sustainable Communities Program of IGNITE Infrastructure Association, presented at the Assembly of First Nations 2017 National Housing and Infrastructure Forum being held in Montreal, Quebec, October 30-November 1. During his presentation, Manitowabi announced the national launch of the First Nations Sustainable Communities Program.

Manitowabi participated in a panel discussion on Skills Development and Capacity Building. The panel also discussed opportunities to support First Nations with innovative project development and financing models. “It is crucial, now more than ever, for First Nations to develop new ways of project development and financing.  The current government programs are broken and have been broken for a long time.  Yes, First Nations do need a national strategy with new delivery models and new federal programming, but until then, First Nations need a new approach to infrastructure – a community driven approach that is supported by IGNITE.”

Innovative Strategy Will Improve Economic Prosperity and Social Well-Being 

October 11, 2017 – Manitoulin Island, Ontario – The Wiikwemkoong Unceded Territory, one of the 10 largest First Nation communities in Canada, is honoured to be the first community to participate in the First Nations Sustainable Communities Program, developed by IGNITE Infrastructure Association Inc. (IGNITE). Elected Chief of the Wiikwemkoong Unceded Territory, Ogimaa Duke Peltier and Director of the IGNITE First Nations Sustainable Communities Program, Walter Manitowabi, celebrated the official launch of the program in Ontario, as well as the successful completion of Phase One of the Wiikwemkoong project, today at a ceremonial red ribbon event. Endorsed by the Chiefs of Ontario, the First Nations Sustainable Communities Program provides support to First Nations in developing comprehensive, community-driven plans that reflect local opportunities and constraints. Through the program, IGNITE works with First Nations communities to design, build, finance, and deliver project implementation strategies; which are developed collaboratively with First Nations Leadership through needs assessments and comprehensive energy and facility audits.