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Government of Canada announces the Indigenous organizations in Saskatchewan who received funding to address the COVID-19 pandemic in urban areas

Press Release

September 24, 2020 — Ottawa, Ontario, Traditional territory of the Algonquin Peoples — Indigenous Services Canada

Today, on behalf of the Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Indigenous Services, the Honourable Jim Carr, Member of Parliament for Winnipeg South Centre announced the 28 Indigenous organizations in the province of Saskatchewan who received approximately $6.1 million in funding through the Indigenous Community Support Fund’s off-reserve and urban stream to address the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Since the pandemic began action has been taken at all levels to protect the most vulnerable and to support those who need it most. The Government of Canada is providing funding to Indigenous organizations in Saskatchewan to address the critical needs of urban Indigenous Peoples during this crisis. The funding will aid with food security, mental health support services, homelessness, and required emergency supplies to ensure the health and safety of Indigenous Peoples.

The Saskatoon Yellow Quill Urban Services received $20,000 in funding to provide direct education and teaching tools to support urban Indigenous Peoples to better understand the impacts of COVID-19. The organization also coordinates activities such as a community garden and home deliveries, ensuring food security, and providing personal protective equipment and sanitation supplies.

As well, the Lac La Ronge Indian Band received $75,000 to help address their COVID-19 Support Plan which will aid their members living off reserve. With this funding, they are addressing food security needs, by ensuring access to grocery financial assistance for approximately 4,200 off-reserve members.

As part of the Indigenous Community Support Fund, the Government of Canada is distributing a total of $90 million to Indigenous organizations and communities providing services to Indigenous Peoples living in urban areas, to support essential services to the most vulnerable and to prevent and respond to potential COVID-19 outbreaks.

On August 12, the Government of Canada announced an additional $305 million for the Indigenous Community Support Fund. This most recent announcement brings the Indigenous Community Support Fund to $685 million in total funding. It will be distributed through a combination of allocations directly to First Nations, Inuit and Métis leadership, and needs-based funding, which will be application driven and extend to Indigenous communities and organizations serving First Nations living off-reserve as well as Indigenous Peoples living in urban centres.

The organizations within Saskatchewan are among approximately 260 Indigenous organizations supported to date by the urban and off-reserve stream of the Indigenous Community Support Fund, to help address the critical needs of Indigenous Peoples living in urban centres across the country impacted by the pandemic.

Quotes

“I am pleased to announce today the 28 Indigenous organizations in Saskatchewan who received much needed financial support to help them continue to provide the necessary services and programs to stop the spread of COVID-19 and to support Indigenous Peoples living in urban centres and First Nations living off reserve. The safety and health of Indigenous Peoples remain our top priority.”

The Honourable Jim Carr
Prime Minister’s special representative for the Prairies and
Member of Parliament for Winnipeg South Centre

“Today’s announcement is another step forward in ensuring the health and safety of Indigenous Peoples. Since the beginning of the pandemic, we’ve seen incredible action taken by leadership at all levels to protect the most vulnerable and to take collective action to support those who need it most. Their hard work and dedication is saving lives and preventing the spread of COVID-19.”

Pam Damoff
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Indigenous Services and
Member of Parliament for Oakville North—Burlington

“I would like to thank Indigenous Services Canada – ICFS Urban funding for approving and funding opportunities for our Urban members of Yellow Quill First Nations in Saskatoon. This will provide us with the necessary supports for the well-being of our urban members. We welcome any opportunities for the betterment of our communities. This funding will provide support in the second wave of the COVID-19 virus. Once again, thank you for the program.”

Rose Campeau, Board Member
Yellow Quill Urban Services Inc.

“The Lac La Ronge Indian Band has over 11,000 members living in six reserve communities, as well as various other areas, including urban locations. Very often our urban members are away from the supports that have helped to improve the lives of our on-reserve membership. In these times of COVID-19, extra support to our off-reserve members was definitely needed. This world-wide pandemic put extra stress on all families, as well as our own LLRIB membership in urban areas, and we were grateful to receive funding from Indigenous Services Canada, through the Indigenous Community Support Fund, to help alleviate some of the worry of food security in these uncertain times. Through ICFS funding, the Lac La Ronge Indian Band was able to provide members with an amount of groceries and household supplies during the initial stages of the pandemic, and this added support was well received by our members in urban centres. On behalf of the Lac La Ronge Indian Band, I would like to thank the department of Indigenous Services Canada for the extra funding for our members who live off reserve, and to relay to the Minister that the support was appreciated.”

Gordon Dupre, Director
Lac La Ronge Indian Band – Economic Development

Quick facts

  • This support is part of over $2.2 billion that has been committed in specific support to Indigenous and northern communities and organizations in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Project funding for the Indigenous Community Support Fund – urban and off-reserve stream was selected through a national Call for Proposals process.
  • First Nations, Inuit and Métis also have access to other support measures available to Canadian individuals, businesses and industries, through the Government of Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan.

Associated links

Contacts

For more information, media may contact:

Adrienne Vaupshas
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Marc Miller
Minister of Indigenous Services
[email protected]

Media Relations
Indigenous Services Canada
819-953-1160
[email protected]

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