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First Nations forest management company among organizations sharing in $5.7M

Province announced economic development funds on Oct. 5
Owned by seven regional First Nations, Ne-Daa-Kii-Me-Naan Inc. provides forest management services for the Kenogami Forest in northwestern Ontario.

Ne-Daa-Kii-Me-Naan Inc. (Nedaak) has received $2 million in provincial funds to build a new facility that will train more Indigenous people for work in the forestry sector.

The funds, which come from the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corp. (NOHFC), will go toward a 7,141-square-foot business training complex that will provide a permanent location for Nedaak to promote First Nations participation in the forest sector.

Nedaak is owned by the seven regional First Nation communities of Aroland, Constance Lake, Ginoogaming, Long Lake #58, Animbiigoo Zaagi'igan Anishinaabek, Red Rock Indian Band, and Pays Plat.

“This new facility will become the cornerstone of the organization and will assist in the promotion of Indigenous participation in the forestry sector in northwestern Ontario, particularly within the Kenogami forest," said Joe Baxter, Nedaak’s president, in an Oct. 5 news release.

Nedaak is one of six organizations in northwestern Ontario that are sharing in $5.7 million in provincial funds, announced by Premier Doug Ford on Oct. 5.

The remaining projects include: 

  • $2 million for Minodahmun Development Inc. – a partnership between the Animbiigoo Zaagi’igan Anishinaabek (AZA), Aroland and Ginoogaming First Nations – to develop the Migizi Commercial Plaza, which will serve the needs of First Nation members, tourists and regional residents, create jobs, and drive revenue for the partner First Nations and the Municipality of Greenstone;
  • Nearly $1.5 million for the Municipality of Greenstone to enhance ice-making equipment at the Longlac Sportplex, Nakina Community Centre and Beardmore Community Centre, and make electrical and exterior door upgrades and table and chair replacements;
  • $200,000 for Instinct Contracting to purchase equipment that will allow for roadside wood processing and enable the company to work closely with First Nation-owned companies for forestry operations in the Kenogami Forest including harvesting and processing;
  • $60,000 for Aroland First Nation to conduct a feasibility study for the development of a central multi-purpose facility in the community; and
  • Over $26,000 for Booth’s Air Repair Inc. to hire an Apprentice Aircraft Maintenance Engineer to service and maintain aircraft.