Hello (Ahneen) Greetings!  

 

Wow is all I can say for this year.  It is now September 2014.  Everything is back to normal after a hectic summer for everyone.  There have been a number of events, changes, and trips. I’m proud to have our 1st Inaugural pow-wow showcased and completed; it was a job well done from our pow-wow committee. 

 

I’m also proud to see our Nation’s Elders teach our people young and old about what O’Chiese First Nation is about – CULTURE.  We had our first Culture camp just a couple of weeks ago.  This was much needed to show our people how powerful our culture is, to exemplify the power of the prayer, the number of ceremonies and their purpose.  Hopefully, we can feed off of this and retain and in most cases, regain our language and culture.  O’Chiese First Nation’s vision statement is providing a wide range of programs culturally.  I think we are starting to show that to our own members and others.  We value our Culture.

 

I would like to introduce our new Education Director, Doreen L’Hirondelle.  We have been missing this particular position for quite some time now.   We hope to increase the awareness of the importance of education to our people.  Education is the pathway for better livelihood for members, a need for the Nation to recruit for careers in our rapidly growing Nation.  Doreen will be working with the school, adult education, and other agencies to better our need for Education.  One definite mandate is to increase our graduation rate. 

 

Our elders took their annual trip to Minneapolis, MN with stops along the way back to Mt. Rushmore by Rapid City, SD plus a brief stop at New Town, ND for a big pow-wow.  Although the trip was long mile wise, the elders definitely enjoyed it. They took into shopping, Sundance, and of course a little bit of gambling in Minnesota.

Our summer students got a bit of treat near the end of their summer jobs.  The Nation provided them a reward by taking them to Seattle for a Major League Baseball game between Seattle Mariners and Toronto Blue Jays.  Hopefully, it provided inspiration, motivation and a chance to see the USA for the first time for most.  Congratulations to our students who stay in school and continue their education.  Again, it is a very valuable tool in life. 

 

Administratively, we are back to business.  We are looking for 2 RBC Trustees still to sit on the board of our Land Claim Trust.  The information is posted around the Nation.  We were to complete the election process September 4 but due to the busy-ness of the summer, we are extending the deadline for nomination between September 15-19/14 week.  So get nominated.

 

Also, our next community meeting will be from October 7-9/14.  We will have all program managers presenting an update of their programs.  The Business Centre will have a complete day on Oct.8 to do their presentations.  My presentation will include the First Nation Transparency Act plus the Audit 2014, PCD and Election 2015 (wow that time already).  Hope to have a good turnout on all these 3 days.  O’Chiese is about moving forward, transparency, accountability and giving greater opportunity for our members.

 

Speaking of forward, our Phase 2 paving in nearly starting.  We hope to have paving completed to the north end bridge by the end of September.  The old group home, which will now be temporary headquarters for Chief & Council, myself, finance and some administration staff, should be occupied in October sometime, hopefully.  We are outgrowing our current office space as we are rapidly growing.  Our rink roof should also be done before winter hits also…

 

The Leaders of our Nation are doing great job in developing economy, in providing employment, in progressing our Nation, in accountability.  Although, there are many meetings to keep moving forward, they continue the trend so our once underprivileged Nation can continue to progress…  Great Job Chief & Council!!!

 

Til next time….Allan Littlejohn, Band Administrator