Building Futures Changing Lives

The 8th Annual First Nations Northern Housing Conference took place on February 23, 24 & 25, 2010 at the Valhalla Inn in Thunder Bay, Ontario. The First Nations Northern Housing Conference Working Group would like to thank our generous funders and sponsors for their continued support, and the speakers and tradeshow exhibitors for sharing their knowledge and expertise. Most importantly, we would like to thank the delegates for coming from across Ontario and Canada to join us. Your participation is the reason this conference has been such a resounding success for so many years.


Bearskin Lake First Nation

In 2009 Chief and Council started planning that construction of a triplex and two bungalow units at Bearskin Lake First Nation. In order to reduce winter maintenance and health concerns caused by mould, the community installed a heated concrete slab system. This was the first time such technology has been used in houses in Bearskin Lake. The new system replaces the traditional crawlspace with wood stove, improving moisture resistance, while lessening the amount of maintenance required. The total five units all have their own thermostats allowing each resident to change the temperature as needed.

Muskrat Dam First Nation

In the summer of 2009, 3 crews of 4-5 people built 3 bungalows in only 6 weeks in Muskrat Dam First Nation. Each unit has 4 bedrooms and offers ease of access for either the elderly or handicapped. Crews operated under a unique storage and delivery system, that kept them well organized and enabled the projects to be completed in a short time period. The new storage system only allows supervisors to have access to the storage facilities. The system operated on a same day delivery system, meaning that the supervisors would have all materials for the days tasks delivered before work started for the day.

Whitesand First Nation

In August of 2009, a crew of 9 people working 6 days a week began construction of an eight-plex complex. Each unit of the eight-plex offered two bedrooms in a 550-square foot living space. These new residences were designed to give single people, or individuals, a place to live. The occupants moved into their new homes on December 1, 2009. Under the management of project manager, Merve McDonald Contracting, there were no major delays and Whitesand First Nation became the first community nationally to complete a multi-unit housing project under Canada’ Economic Action Plan.



The Builders Challenge event was once again hosted by TV and Radio personality and all ’round handyman Jon Eakes. The challenge consists of 4 demonstrations and competitions detailing proper techniques for building Stairs.

These demonstrations taught delegates:

  • how to install valley and eave protection;
  • to properly install valley flashing and shingles;
  • to create roof penetrations, as needed, and install flashing;
  • and how to install eavestroughs.


  • Drawings & Specifications
  • Mould & Housing
  • First Nation Housing Role Models Panel Discussion
  • ESA & CEAA Reports
  • Remote Northern First Nation Housing Design Charrette Results
  • House as a System
  • Furnace and HRV Maintenance
  • Training & Education
  • RECAP on CEAP & Section 95, Section 10 Overview and How it Worked for Me
  • Success Stories in Housing Administration
  • Rim/Ring Joist Insulation and Air/Vapour Barrier Details
  • Energy Conservation & Energy Efficiency
  • Maintenance Planning – How To