A new Indigenous organization is aiming to take a holistic approach to housing in First Nation communities.
The First Nations Housing Community (FNHC) is designed to support First Nation communities in managing their housing programs, while bridging the gaps between First Nations, government, and industry.
The association has evolved out of the annual First Nations Housing Conference, which has been held in northwestern Ontario every year since 2003.
“This is a huge step for the evolution of the conference and the working group that organizes it,” said Clarence Meekis, a member of the First Nations Housing Working Group and spokesperson for the new association, in a Feb. 27 news release.
“From its humble beginnings as a small event in Sioux Lookout to the national conference it is now, evolving into a national housing community is a big deal.
“The working group is committed to working with First Nations, government and industry across Canada to create a new First Nation-led approach to providing viable housing solutions to First Nations communities.”
The association will work in conjunction with other First Nations housing organizations, working together to find solutions to housing issues faced by Indigenous communities, the release said.
Its core functions will include training and development, community advocacy, expert advice, information sharing, member support, and research and communications.
In its first year, the working group will seek national representation to form the community.
Members who choose to join the association will be offered a free, one-year membership.