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Wataynikaneyap Power: Energizing Youth Complete Capacity Building Program

Press Release

September 17, 2019

Congratulations to the six youth for completing the 6-week Energizing Youth capacity building program! The program began in July with a 2-week course that included curriculum to raise awareness of the Wataynikaneyap Power Project and energy in remote First Nations. The course included safety certificates, information about energy conservation and renewable energy, fundamentals of electricity and the energy system. Guest speakers discussed careers in the powerline industry with profiles from women in energy. The youth worked together as a team, support each other and learned financial literacy, communication, leadership and how Indigenous values are at the centre of energy planning in the communities.

Hands on experiences were the highlight of the course with a welding course at the OSHKI trades trailer where participants practiced welding their initials. The youth were also mentored by Line Crew Ground Support trainees on safety and pole line climbing. Everyone had the opportunity to put on a tool belt and spurs and climb hydro poles at the training site.

Following the course, participants entered into a 4-week in-community work placement. Meaningful work experiences were coordinated with Community Liaisons to gain an understanding of employment opportunities related to energy. Based on their interests, the youth had the opportunity to work in energy planning, business,construction and summer youth activities.

One participant, Gabriel Lac Seul from Wabigoon Ojibway Nation was energized by his visit with trainees at the Line Crew Ground Support training site. He applied and was accepted into the training program and has started the 15-week course! The youth will continue to keep in contact with the project and seek work experience and other training opportunities. We look forward to having another group of youth experience the Energizing Youth Capacity Building program next summer.

Congratulations to the six youth!

Dawson Crowe, Sandy Lake First Nation

Leo Sugarhead, Kingfisher Lake First Nation

Maria Beardy, Bearskin Lake First Nation

Gabriel LacSeul, Wabigoon Ojibway Nation

Brandon Childforever, Wunnumin Lake First Nation

Roberta Wood, Sandy Lake First Nation

More information about Energizing Youth

OSLP, in partnership with Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), the Ontario Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines, and Wataynikaneyap Power, is developing and delivering a capacity building program for youth ages 18 to 25 years from the 24 owner First Nations. An advisory committee of partners has been developed with regular communication. NRCan has provided $400,000 in funding with in-kind contributions from the other partners.

The program will include 6 youth per year over the course of 5 years for a total of 30 participants, beginning July 2019 and ending March 31, 2024.

Youth were invited to submit applications and were selected through an evaluation process. Once selected, they completed the paid 6-week program and are now a part of the Energizing Youth Network which will meet on a regular basis to discuss community energy initiative ideas and provide feedback to the Wataynikaneyap Power project.

A 2-week course was delivered in 2019 that included curriculum that discusses Wataynikaneyap Power and energy in remote First Nations including;

– energy conservation and renewable energy

– fundamentals of electricity, the energy system

– careers in the powerline industry with profiles of women in energy

– financial literacy, communication,leadership, teamwork

– safety certificates

– Indigenous values

– Hands on experiences (welding and pole line climbing and construction was included in 2019)

Following the course, participants entered into a 4-week work placement. Meaningful work experience was coordinated for youth in their community to gain an understanding of employment opportunities related to energy. Depending on the participant’s interests, placements could be related to project management, youth outreach, local distribution, renewable energy, public works, lands and resources, energy conservation, environmental monitoring, etc.

The program may be modified in 2020, based on feedback and lessons learned from 2019. The next intake is scheduled for the summer of 2020. Information will be circulated through the Community Liaisons.

Contact: Lydia Big George ([email protected]) (807) 474-3300

Terry Favelle ([email protected]) (807) 220-0749

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