Planning Today… Building Tomorrow

The 11th Annual First Nations Northern Housing Conference took place on February 12, 13 & 14, 2013 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.


Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug

Sunset Lodge owner Stanley Bluecoat had said that the wait for Band supplied housing was not in keeping with his ambitions so he decided to take on the challenge of home ownership and construction himself. Stanley initially approached the construction of his new home in a phased multi-year plan. After completing the first phase of construction Stanley approached the bank for additional funding. He received a full mortgage to allow the completion of the home. Not only is this new dwelling Stanley’s own home it is also his new business. Stanley operates his home as a lodge offering some of the best accommodations in the North. The Sunset Lodge is a successful operation often booked to capacity. Stanley is already considering the addition of a second building to expand his business.

Batchewana First Nation

The Batchewana First Nation Housing Department has advanced leaps and bounds over the past few years. The Housing Department offers several services to the community through various programs such as financing assistance, ownership programs, renovation assistance and a housing rental program. The housing department is continually enhancing the programming to benefit the community and its residents. Batchewana First Nation has not only constructed new homes for members but also enhanced their capacity in the housing programming field.

Muskrat Dam First Nation

Muskrat Dam First Nation was recognized for their innovative designs in new home construction. In consultation with technical advisors, improved designs were identified and implemented for use in future homes in the community. Muskrat Dam broke away from the conventional models of home construction and approached their projects on their own terms and with their own designs. Not only are the new designs a success from the point of view of the housing department but also from the people who live in the homes.


Interior Finishing

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:

  • the proper techniques for installing drywall on a wood frame wall including board layout, hanging and fastening techniques as well as planning ahead when cabinets are to be installed;
  • finishing drywall on a wood frame wall including how to finish screw heads, panel joints and inside and outside corner finishing;
  • proper finish carpentry techniques including how to install various pieces of trim, including baseboards and window jambs and mouldings;
  • and assembling and installing “knock down” style cabinets, including basic cabinet fitting and hanging instructions.