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Grand Opening Celebration – Canada.ca

June 21, 2024 at 2:05 pm  Federal, Politics

Lower Post Residential School

The Lower Post Residential School operated from 1951 until its closure in 1975 and was a source of profound trauma for many Indigenous families. Run by the Catholic Church, the school left lasting scars on the children and families of Yukon and northern British Columbia First Nations. The building continued to be used for government meetings and administrative purposes until it was permanently closed due to water damage in June 2020.

The demolition of the remaining structure on June 30, 2021, marked a significant step towards healing and reconciliation. The event was attended by various federal and provincial ministers, including the Premier, community leaders, and Residential School Survivors, symbolizing the community’s resilience and hope for the future. The grounds were blessed in preparation for the new multi-purpose building.

Dene Kǫ^ multi-purpose building

The new multi-purpose building stands as a symbol of growth and renewal for the Daylu Dena Council (DDC) and the Kaska people. This facility will serve as a hub for community activities, providing space for gatherings, events, and administrative functions. It represents a safe and welcoming place for the community to come together, fostering social, economic and cultural development.

Additional infrastructure projects in Lower Post, B.C.

As part of the community’s transformation, numerous infrastructure and housing initiatives have been completed. Along with the grand opening of the Dene Kǫ^ multi-purpose building, we are celebrating the DDC’s accomplishments, made possible with support from provincial and federal governments, to enhance the well-being of the Kaska people of Lower Post.

Water treatment facilities

In addition to the multi-purpose building, the community has recently seen the construction of a state-of-the-art water treatment facility, funded by Indigenous Services Canada (ISC). This facility is crucial for providing clean, safe drinking water to the residents, significantly improving the overall health and well-being of the community. Furthermore, there have been significant improvements to the existing water infrastructure, ensuring more reliable and efficient water delivery systems to all residents and supporting the community’s growth and development.

Housing

The community has also benefited from the construction of numerous new homes, contributing to the development of a new subdivision. These housing projects, supported by significant contributions from ISC, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), BC Housing, and the Province of British Columbia, are essential to address the needs of the Daylu Dena Council and to support the population’s growth and stability.

Project funding

These projects were funded through collaborative partnerships:

Multi-purpose building

  • $10 million from Infrastructure Canada, managed through the BC Government under the Community, Culture, and Recreation Infrastructure stream of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP)
  • $540,000 from the DDC – in support of the ICIP application
  • $1.5 million from the BC Government – in support of the DDC’s ICIP application
  • $13.1 million from ISC – including support from the ISC Indian Residential School Infrastructure Program (IRSIP) addressing the legacy of residential school buildings and sites on reserve
  • $4 million from the BC Government to the DDC to help address unforeseen costs associated with the COVID-19 pandemic and dramatically escalating building costs in northern B.C.

Additionally, Indigenous Services Canada has provided $4.1 million since 2009 to remediate the site and remove hazardous materials.

Water treatment facilities

New housing since 2021

  • $3.1 million from ISC to construct seven new homes, including two 5-bedroom houses and one 4-bedroom house
  • $1.3 million through the CMHC Affordable Housing Fund for the construction of transitional housing for at-risk residents and those fleeing domestic violence (announced in March 2023)
  • Co-investment: $1.6 million through the CMHC Affordable Housing Fund, $600,000 from the DDC, and $590,000 from ISC for the construction of five affordable homes (announced in October, 2023)
  • $6.6 million from the Province of British Columbia through BC Housing’s Building BC: Women’s Transition Housing Fund and $6.1 million from the Supportive Housing Fund. BC Housing has also provided $411,747 in operation funding to the Lower Post First Nation Housing Society.

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