COURTENAY – The Ka:’yu:’k’t’h’/Che:k’tles7et’h’ First Nations (KCFN) are embarking on the development of a new economic development strategy that meets the Nation’s changing needs and challenges. Matching funding support will be provided from the Island Coastal Economic Trust’s Economic Development Readiness Program (EDRP).

The Ka:’yu:’k’t’h’/Che:k’tles7et’h’ First Nations territories are located in a remote area on the Pacific coast of northern Vancouver Island. With members living throughout the region the new economic development plan will require extensive consultation.

“This strategic plan will provide guidance for our future economic development priorities, all with a goal of creating sustainable opportunities for our members,” said Steiner Våge Ka:yu:’k’t’h’ / Che:k’tles7et’h’ Director of Community Services.

Beginning with a review of past strategies and current business plans, the process will include workshops, open houses, interviews, and other engagement activities.

“With the majority of our members living outside the Ka:yu:’k’t’h’ / Che:k’tles7et’h’ First Nations village of Houpsitas, this project requires some unique activities in gathering information and communicating back out to all members,” Våge explained.

One of those unique activities is the development of a ‘graphic novel’, to share the results of the strategy.

“The economic development strategies funding stream of our EDRP program was designed to ensure that communities have the opportunity to define their aspirations and proactively plan for their economic future,” explained ICET Chair Josie Osborne. “This includes using approaches to engagement, communications, and planning  that are best suited to each community. We are excited to see the results of the KCFN’s innovative approach to planning and their renewed economic development strategy.”

The project is expected to get underway shortly with completion anticipated within the year.


About the Island Coastal Economic Trust
Created and capitalized by the Province of BC, the Island Coastal Economic Trust (ICET) has been at the forefront of economic diversification, planning and regional revitalization for the past 12 years.

ICET is independently governed by a Board of Directors and two Regional Advisory Committees which include more than 50 locally elected officials, MLAs and appointees from the Island and Coast. This exceptional team of leaders collaborate to set regional priorities and build vital multi-regional networks.

Through a community centered decision-making process, ICET has approved more than $52 million in funding for over 200 economic infrastructure and economic development readiness projects. These investments have leveraged over $270 million in new investment into the region creating more than 2500 construction phase jobs and 2650 long term permanent jobs.

A full overview of ICET can be found at www.islandcoastaltrust.ca

For further information:
Line Robert, CEO Island Coastal Economic Trust Tel. 250-871-7797 (Ext. 227) line.robert@islandcoastaltrust.ca
Mayor Josie Osborne, ICET ChairDistrict of TofinoTel. 250-725-3229osborne@tofino.ca
Steinar Våge, Director of Community ServicesKa:yu:’k’t’h’ / Che:k’tles7et’h’ First NationsTel. 250-332-5259 Ext.122steinarv@kcfirstnations.com

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