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From: Infrastructure Canada
Val-d’Or, Quebec, August 17, 2022—Today, the Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Quebec Lieutenant, on behalf of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities, announced $25 million in federal funding for infrastructure improvements to the Val-d’Or Native Friendship Centre.
“What we are announcing today is more than an investment in brick and mortar. It’s a commitment to the Indigenous community in Val-d’Or that will benefit the entire community. This expansion and renovation project is a concrete action that will allow the Centre to continue its mission and that will positively affect the daily life of its staff and its users,” said the Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Quebec Lieutenant, on behalf of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities.
“The heart of our Friendship Centre beats to the dynamic rhythm of our community. An innovative and engaging community that puts forward an urban Indigenous community governance model well-anchored in its environment. The countless initiatives deployed by the Centre over nearly 50 years in sectors such as health, social services, early childhood, education, community housing, employment, justice and social economy requires facilities that meet the expectations of the development. The Government of Canada’s announcement of unprecedented funding to upgrade our infrastructure represents a lot more than a financial investment for our community: it’s a concrete action that gives a true meaning to reconciliation,” said president of the board of directors for the Val-d’Or Native Friendship Centre, Elder Oscar Kistabish.
The funding will allow the Val-d’Or Native Friendship Centre to develop their infrastructure, notably by expanding and renovating its main building, as well as by building a new five-storey pavilion adjacent to it. This major project will modernize the important community hub and strengthen their culturally relevant and safe services for the city’s growing Indigenous community. The upgrades will include better access to the community hubs and living spaces, the development of the Indigenous Health Clinic, the retrofit of the Indigenous daycare centre, as well as the construction of new living spaces for the Cree of Eeyou Istchee coming to Val-d’Or to receive health care.
In addition to responding to the growing needs and realities of the community, the project will increase the Centre’s capacity and generate significant socio-economic benefits for all residents of the City of Val-d’Or, including members of the Indigenous community. The project will also make the renovated and expanded spaces entirely carbon neutral.
Press Secretary and Communications Advisor
Office of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc
Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities
Val-d’Or Native Friendship Centre
Toll free: 1-877-250-7154
Email: [email protected]
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