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Treaty One Leadership Paves Path to Self-Determination with Wiitahnookiinitaw Tahshkayzing Entrepreneurship Centre

Press Release

June 26, 2024 – Treaty No. 1 Territory – The Treaty One Nations and Treaty One Development Corporation are proud to announce the formal establishment and upcoming launch of the first Indigenous-led Entrepreneurship Centre. Wiitahnookiinitaw Tahshkayzing (Wii-tah-noo-kii-nitaw Tah-shkay-zing), meaning “Working Together to Succeed”, was named by Knowledge Keepers from the Sandy Bay Ojibway First Nation. The Wiitahnookiinitaw Tahshkayzing Entrepreneurship Centre (WTEC) is scheduled to officially open in the Fall of 2024 and will significantly impact Indigenous entrepreneurship by providing essential services along with cultural, economic, and technical resources to Indigenous entrepreneurs and First Nations across all of Canada.

The WTEC is committed to empowering Indigenous entrepreneurs by creating a business environment that embraces the cultural, spiritual, and community-driven perspectives of Indigenous peoples and First Nation communities. The mandate encompasses promoting culturally integrated business practices, advancing entrepreneurial education through training, mentorship, and access to capital, as well as encouraging the introduction of innovative ideas into the marketplace.

Councillor Evan Roberts, WTEC Chairperson, expressed: “We are excited to launch the Wiitahnookiinitaw Tahshkayzing Entrepreneurship Centre, which represents a significant step forward in supporting Indigenous entrepreneurship as well as recognizing and realizing the unique contributions of Indigenous people to our economy and society.”

Kathleen BlueSky, WTEC CEO, stated: “Our centre will create a vibrant ecosystem of Indigenous entrepreneurship where our unique cultural, spiritual, and community-driven perspectives are at the heart of every business venture. We are dedicated to bringing innovative ideas into the marketplace, fostering economic growth and cultural integrity”.

Chief E.J. Fontaine, President of the Treaty One Development Corporation, stated: “Treaty One’s Entrepreneurship Centre will empower Indigenous entrepreneurs through comprehensive education, mentorship, and access to funding, focusing on building the entrepreneurial spirit among Indigenous youth. Our goal is to build their confidence and capabilities, inspiring a new generation to achieve excellence and contribute to strengthening both their communities and the economy. ”

The official launch event will be held in the Fall of 2024, featuring keynote speakers, workshops, and networking opportunities for aspiring entrepreneurs and community members.

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For media inquiries, please contact:

Vic Savino
Director of Communications, Treaty One Nations
Email: vsavino@treaty1.ca | Cell: 204-770-0392

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