Keewaytinook Okimakanak

Planning for Winter Road

Just a reminder to start planning for this years winter road. If you need any assistance please contact myself or David Neegan @ 1-800-387-3740

Deadline Date for CORDA and OAEDP, December 3/2001

The deadline date for this year's Canada Ontario Resource Development Agreement (CORDA) and Ontario Aboriginal Economic Development Program (OAEDP) is December 3/2001. Under CORDA, First Nations, band members, and Native organizations are eligible to apply for dollars to cover resource economic development activities (ie. fur harvesting, forestry, resource planning, etc..) The programs under OAEDP are: 1) Organizational Development ($15,000) 2) Economic Capicity Building ($25,000) 3) Business Development ($50,000) For more program information, please goto

National Day of Mourning at Keewaytinook Okimakanak

Keewaytinook Okimakanak leaders and staff joined together to offer their prayers and support during the National Day of Mourning for all the people and their families who lost loved ones during the tradegies that took place on Tuesday, Sept 11 in New York and Washington DC. Linking together via videoconference and watching the ceremonies on Parliament Hill helped each of us feel a part of this very important event. The three minutes of silence organized by the Government of Canada provided everyone with a brief time to reflect on the victims of this terrible crime against humanity. Afterwards, a local minister lead the group in a prayer of understanding and reflection. Pictures of this event are available at

Keewaytinook Okimakanak staff presents at OFNTSC annual conference

At the 6th Annual Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation conference at the Valhalla Inn in Thunder Bay, Keewaytinook Okimakanak staff presented information about the Kuh-ke-nah Smart First Nations demonstration project during the Keynote Address at the Wednesday evening dinner. Ken Thomas, Assembly of First Nations Special Advisor to National Chief Matthew Coon Come, challenged the audience to begin planning for broadband Internet access in every First Nation across Ontario. He presented AFN’s plans to partner with a number of public and private sector groups to develop the National First Nations Broadband Network to connect every First Nation across Canada to broadband data services. Peter Campbell, KO Public Works Manager and OFNTSC Board member, introduced the project (read his speech). Brian Beaton, K-Net Services Coordinator, presented information about the Kuh-ke-nah project (its origins, work completed and plans for the future). The powerpoint presentation is available on-line.

Kuh-ke-nah Network Workshop in Balmertown

Keewaytinook Okimakanak e-Center managers, Computer Technicians, and KiHS Classroom Assistants met at the Keewaytinook Okimakanak office in Balmertown (Week of Aug 13). This was the first opportunity that everyone has been able to get together to share their stories and developments from their communities. Everyone learned a lot from each other as members of the Keewaytinook Okimakanak Smart Team. Each of the six deliverables (projects) under the Kuh-ke-nah Smart Demonstration initiative were discussed and strategies for developing and delivering these projects over the next three years were reviewed. These included: * the Keewaytinook internet High School (KiHS) * the Keewaytinook Okimakanak Telehealth project * the K-Net Caching Router project * the e-Centre development project * the Keewaytinook Data Warehouse project * the K-Net Portal project. See the pictures of all the different Keewaytinook Okimakanak staff involved in the Kuh-ke-nah project.

OECD publication profiles the ICT work of Keewaytinook Okimakanak

The international Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) recently published a research book entitled "Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) and Rural Development". Cases studies used to produce the analytical part, policy recommendations and other resources in the book, included ICT projects from Canada, France, Ireland, the United Kingdom and the United States. The work of the Keewaytinook Okimakanak First Nations in the development of the Kuh-ke-nah Smart First Nations Demonstration project (with sections on KiHS and Telehealth) is included in the case study section (see the KO Case Study - HTML format or WORD format).

Some great recommendations in the publication supporting the Broadband Task Force's "The New National Dream" ... for example

Under Telecommunications Infrastructure (Chapter 4, page 89):

1. Consider deployment of a national broadband project, as some countries are already doing, either through public/private partnerships or with public funding in the areas with the lowest population.

2. Consider the possibility of extending universal service principles and compensation to other areas than telephony, and at least for public service applications useful in rural areas.

Other recommendations come under the headings of:
* Implementation of ICT projects
* Observation and measurement of ICT in rural areas
* Public access points
* On-line access to public services
* Local governance
* Implementation of ICT by SMEs
* Creation of new activities

Connecting All First Nations to Broadband

There have been a number of newspaper articles written about the Broadband Task Force report: The New National Dream: Networking the Nation for Broadband Access. Just last week after the AFN meeting in Halifax the Globe and Mail carried the story “High-speed Internet Service Would Link All Native Reserves” and CBC on-line news had the story “New plans to bring Internet to First Nation reserves”. In the June 28 edition of Wawatay News, the release of the New National Dream report was covered in the article, “National Broadband Task Force”. The Sioux Bulletin also carried an article about the release of the report in their June 27 paper, with the front page headline “High-speed Internet access for everyone”.

The report is available on-line (the Broadband Task Force final report). For additional information about connecting communities to broadband networks, check out the National Broadband Task Force web site, Reports and Papers in the Resource Area. There are many excellent reference documents that were used to assist the task force in developing their final report.

News coverage of the Launch of the Kuh-ke-nah Network

Various local and regional newspapers and radio stations provided coverage of the launch of the Kuh-ke-nah Network of Smart First Nations. Read the on-line July 7 article in the Thunder Bay Chronicle Journal entitled "Red Lake-area First Nations to get 'connected'" and the July 11 front page story in the Sioux Bulletin "Northern Chiefs launch Smart First Nations Project". Other stories are available in the Red Lake District News (July 4 and 11 issues) and are being written for the Northern Ontario Business and Windspeaker. Wawatay News (July 12 issue) published an article about the launch entitled "Kuh-ke-nah Network Grand Opening".

Thanks to everyone for making this event so successful! Be sure to watch the Launch web site for more information about this event.

Celebrating the Launch of the Kuh-ke-nah Network of SMART First Nations

On Friday July 6, Keewaytinook Okimakanak First Nations will be celebrating the launch of the Kuh-ke-nah Network of SMART First Nations. See the invitation to attend the celebration at our Balmertown office

Similar celebrations will be occurring in each of the Keewaytinook Okimakanak First Nations (Deer Lake, Fort Severn, Keewaywin, North Spirit Lake and Poplar Hill). The offices in each community will be connecting with each other using the video conferencing services over the Kuh-ke-nah Network. Everyone is invited to stop by the office in your community to participate in the celebration of this launch.

The Kuh-ke-nah SMART project is a three year initiative that officially began in April 2001. The project will demonstrate how Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) are being used by the communities to support their economic and social development. Funding for this multi-million dollar project is being provided by Industry Canada's Smart Communities and FedNor programs, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, Northern Ontario Heritage Fund, Office of Learning Technologies (HRDC) and the Sioux Lookout Area Aboriginal Management Board (SLAAMB).

Partnerships with a number of different corporations, businesses, organizations and governments are making this project a nationally recognized undertaking. Representatives from many of these groups will be attending the gathering in Balmertown. Watch the K-Net web site for further updates on this launch.

“Kuh-ke-nah” is the Oji-Cree word for “everybody” in English. Keewaytinook Okimakanak Chiefs and staff want to invite everybody to work with us and share in this exciting development.

National Aboriginal Day at Pakwash Park

Northern Chiefs Office in Balmertown celebrated National Aboriginal Day at Pakwash Park, which is located just south of Red Lake. Several of the staff and their families camped overnight at the campground, while other staff and families arrived at the park for breakfast and lunch on June 21st. The children had a wonderful time fishing and playing in the water, while the rest of the people enjoyed the beautiful weather by relaxing in the sun, hiking in the park, and thoroughly enjoying this special day. Check out the pictures of this gathering.

Elizabeth Pahkala
Health Secretary