Student Classic to be held May 14, 2018

The Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation (OFNTSC) is announcing the Student Classic Golf Fundraiser will be taking place May 14, 2018 at Thundering Waters in Niagara Falls, ON with a 1pm Shotgun Start. Cost to register for this great event is $150 per person or $600 for a foursome. We invite you to come out and show your support for First Nations students!

The Student Classic takes place each year to raise funds for Ontario First Nations students in science, engineering, technology and math studies. Funds raised from the tournament go directly towards the OFNTSC’s Student Achievement Awards. The OFNTSC provides four bursaries to Ontario First Nations students and one engineering bursary.

REGISTER NOW FOR THE STUDENT CLASSIC

This year’s tournament will be taking place the Monday before the OFNTSC’s First Nations Water Symposium.  Participants will receive a gift bag for registering for the tournament, which can be picked up the day of the tournament.

Interested in becoming a sponsor? See our attachment at the bottom of this page for sponsorship opportunities related to the Student Classic. Have a question about the Student Classic? Please contact Tom Northardt, Student Classic Coordinator at 416 651 443 ext.  245 or by email at tnorthardt@ofntsc.org

2018 Annual Report Now Available!

The Ontario First Nations Techncial Services Corporation (OFNTSC) is proud to present our 2018 Anual Report. This year’s report includes updates from the President of the Board, Wes Bova, Management and Service reports.  Additionally the report includes strategic reports on the update of the national operations and maintenance policy, the OFNTSC’s five year strategic plan, tri-lateral steering group, OFNTSC mandate review and the OFNTSC’s task force report on drinking water regulation. We would like to thank all of our stakeholders for there continued support, and we look forward to working with our First Nations and tribal councils on techncial issues.

Attachments:

OFNTSC Annual Report 2018

Water Symposium Presentations now available!

Presentations from our 2018 First Nations Water Symposium are now avialable for download. We would like to thank all of our delegates for participating in the Symposium. The Symposium couldn’t have taken place without you.

Please note that this is not all of the presentations given at the Symposium.  Looking for a presentation that’s not on our website? Contact Colin French, Communications Officer, at 416 651 1443 ext. 256 or by email at cfrench@ofntsc.org.

Attachments:

Groundwater Supply Well Construction, Operation and Maintenance

OFNTSC 2018 Peer Support Network

OFNTSC O&M Cost Analysis FNWS May 2018

Toolkit cover and organizations

2018-15-05 Water Task Force Update

SourceWaterTraining H2OSymposium 20180515

2018 Trilateral Summary Presentation

20180515 Data Results Water Symposium Presentation

Press Release: First Nations Water Symposium to address progress on Federal Government’s promise to eliminate of boil water advisories in Ontario First Nation

Niagara Falls, ON – On May 15, 2018 the Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation (OFNTSC) will be holding the 2018 First Nations Water Symposium in Niagara Falls, ON at the Sheraton on the Falls beginning at 8:30am. The First Nations Water Symposium aims to bring together Chiefs, administrators and water/wastewater plant operators with federal and provincial governments to address water quality issues.

The morning of the 15thwill open with welcome remarks from Chief Stacey LaForme, Mississuagas of the New Credit, Wes Bova, President, OFNTSC, Melanie Debassige, Executive Director, OFNTSC and a representative of Indigenous Services Canada (ISC).

After the welcoming addresses, a panel will take place that will discuss the current state of water in Ontario First Nations. During the last federal election the current federal government promised the elimination of boil water advisories in all First Nations across Canada by 2021. Ontario’s First Nations progress towards this goal will be updated by the OFNTSC’s water and wastewater engineer Tricia Hamilton.  The OFNTSC will also provide presentations on source water protection, operations and maintenance cost comparison and gap analysis, and an update on the water task force, which was launched in response to the federal government’s Safe Drinking Water Act for First Nations.

Following the morning plenary session on the 15th, themorning will conclude with the launch of the First Nations Public Infrastructure Engineering Vulnerability Committee’s Toolkit. The toolkit will assist First Nations in identifying and developing mitigation measures for risks to infrastructure in First Nations. Representatives of the project team from First Nations, OFNTSC, ISC, Stantec, and Engineers Canada will be on hand for the launch.

Over the course of the two days delegates of the symposium will take part in workshops intended to assist First Nations in the delivery of safe drinking water. Workshops will range from source water protection, climate change/asset management, water security for First Nations, and reducing operations and maintenance costs at your water plant.

The Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation was created in 1995 to provide technical advisory services to 133 First Nations, 16 Tribal Councils in Ontario. Areas of service include operations and maintenance, housing, water and wastewater treatment, infrastructure, emergency planning, environment, climate change and fire and safety. For more information on the OFNTSC, please visit www.ofntsc.org

For more information on this announcement please contact Colin French, Communications Officer, 416 709 8738 or by email at cfrench@ofntsc.org

Press Release: OFNTSC Climate Change Program renews funding through 2020

Toronto, ON (April 12, 2018)  – The OFNTSC working together with our provincial partner the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) have renewed funding to support the OFNTSC’s Climate Change program.  The funding agreement allows for the transfer of $2.1 million to the OFNTSC for work related to renewable energy studies, carbon management studies, and to train 50 First Nations on the energy course.

Executive Director of the OFNTSC Melanie Debassige said “We welcome the renewed commitment of the MOECC to address the critical impacts of Climate Change on First Nations in Ontario.  The need for First Nations to develop community energy plans combined with mitigation strategies for climate change cannot be understated.”

Under the renewed agreement the OFNTSC will be engaging with 50 First Nations over the next two years to deliver energy related training, five renewable energy studies and two carbon management studies in First Nations across Ontario.

Debassige added “Climate Change is one of the biggest threats to critical infrastructure in Ontario First Nations.  Addressing options to mitigate the effects of climate change will ensure infrastructure will be available for future generations use. “

The OFNTSC’s Climate Change program was initiated to assist First Nations in Ontario with development of community energy plans, renewable energy studies, greenhouse gas reductions, assist in building capacity at a community level and working with tribal councils, PTO’s, and First Nations on Ontario’s climate change mitigation policies.

The Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation was created in 1995 to provide technical advisory services to 133 First Nations, 16 Tribal Councils in Ontario. Areas of service include operations and maintenance, housing, water and wastewater treatment, infrastructure, emergency planning, environment, climate change and fire and safety. For more information on the OFNTSC, please visit www.ofntsc.org

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For more information on this announcement please contact Colin French, Communications Officer, 416 709 8738 or by email at cfrench@ofntsc.org

 

Press Release: OFNTSC continues to advocate for clean drinking water for Ontario First Nations

OFNTSC continues to advocate for clean drinking water for Ontario First Nations

(Toronto, March 22, 2018) – The Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation (OFNTSC) is acknowledging that today is World Water Day. The United Nations originally began this acknowledgment in 1993 to bring attention to the importance that freshwater plays in everyone’s lives and the sustainable management of water resources.  This year’s theme is: The Answer is in Nature.  

The OFNTSC has worked over the past 23 years to ensure First Nations have access to clean drinking water in the communities we serve. Initiatives carried out by the OFNTSC in relation to clean drinking water, target: the protection of source water, training of water and wastewater plant operators, treatment facility operations and maintenance, and working with the Federal and Provincial (Ontario) governments, and the Chiefs of Ontario to address long standing boil water advisories in First Nations as part of a trilateral group. The OFNTSC also provides engineering services to First Nations to address water deficiencies.

“The OFNTSC continues to work with our First Nations and Tribal Councils in Ontario to ensure everyone has access to clean drinking water” said Melanie Debassige, Executive Director of the OFNTSC. “The goal of ensuring First Nations have clean drinking water is one that is attainable through working together with our partners. We can’t become complacent with progress that has already been made. We have to establish policy and funding mechanisms that realize First Nations have a right to clean drinking water.”

The OFNTSC would also like to acknowledge Autumn Peltier, from Wikwemikong First Nation. Ms. Peltier today is addressing the United Nations assembly in New York City on the importance of clean water to communities across the planet. Autumn will be delivering a presentation entitled “Water’s Promise: Making Every Drop Count”. The OFNTSC would like to congratulate Autumn on her continued efforts to raise awareness about the importance water plays in everyone’s lives, and to ensure water resources are available to future generations.

“Today on World Water Day we encourage all people on our mother earth, to give thanks for the water with which we sustain our lives. It is our responsibility now at this time to safeguard this precious resource for our future generations use.”

The Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation was created in 1995 to provide technical advice to 134 First Nations, 16 Tribal Councils, six large First Nations, 11 southern unaffiliated First Nations and seven northern unaffiliated First Nations. Areas of service include operations and maintenance, housing, water and wastewater treatment, infrastructure, training, environment, fire and safety and emergency planning. For more information on the OFNTSC, please visit www.ofntsc.org

Student Achievement/Derrick Kamanga Memorial Award Applications now available

The OFNTSC’s Student Achievement and the Derrick Kamanga Memorial Award applications are now available for the 2017-2018 academic year.  Each year the OFNTSC awards four – $1000 scholarships to First Nations students across the province in science or technology fields, and one – $2000 award for a First Nation student in engineering.

Students applying for the awards must meet these eligibility requirements:

  • Must be of First Nations ancestry
  • Must be a member of the OFNTSC client base (First Nation in Ontario)
  • Must not be a previous recipient of the award (in past two years)
  • Be enrolled in a recognized college or university program
  • Studies should be focused on science, technology, engineering, math, architectural, etc.
  • Completed application package

The deadline to apply for this year’s awards are July 20, 2018 at 4:30pm. All applicants are required to complete the application in its entirety in order to be eligible for the awards. Late submissions will not be accepted beyond the deadline.  Students can be nominated for the awards by parents, siblings, teachers, guidance/education counsellors, etc. Please note that the Derrick Kamanga Memorial Award is for engineering students only.

Have any questions about the application package? Call Colin French, Communications Officer at 416 651 1443 ext.256 or by email at cfrench@ofntsc.org.

Attachments:

Student Awards 2018

DK Memorial Award Application 2018

2018 First Nations Water Symposium registration now open!

The 2018 First Nations Water Symposium (FNWS) website is now open for registration. The FNWS will be taking place May 16-18, 2018 at the Sheraton on the Falls, Niagara Falls, ON. The First Nations Water Symposium is aimed at bringing together First Nations communities to address current water and wastewater issues.  The FNWS also provides an opportunity to network, build awareness and understanding of the day-to-day issues facing water and wastewater management in first Nations.

The OFNTSC is sponsoring two delegates from these areas in Ontario:

  • Tribal Councils
  • Large First Nations (populations above 2500 on –reserve)
  • Unaffiliated First Nations (First Nations without a Tribal Council affiliation)

For a complete breakdown of what’s covered during the event, agenda, and activities during the FNWS, please visit our website www.firstnationwatersymposium.com

Press Release: OFNTSC announces hiring of New Executive Director

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation announces hiring of New Executive Director

Toronto, ON (February 12, 2018) – The Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation Board of Directors (OFNTSC) has appointed Melanie Debassige as the new Executive Director for the OFNTSC. Her appointment to the role will begin on February 12, 2018 at the Toronto Service Centre.

“The Corporation is pleased that we have found such a great leader for our Corporation” said Wes Bova, OFNTSC President. “Melanie brings business knowledge combined with a passion to assist First Nations in creating sustainable infrastructure for First Nation communities. The Board of Directors felt that she is the right fit to lead this Corporation.”

Melanie is currently leading the British Columbia Assembly of First Nations as its Chief of Staff. In this role she has served as political advisor to the BC Regional Chief, while also managing the day-to-day operations of the BC AFN. “After spending the past few years serving First Nations leadership in British Columbia, I am thrilled to return home to serve Ontario First Nations in their pursuit of self-reliance and self-determination” said Debassige.

“I am honoured to serve as the first Indigenous woman to lead the OFNTSC at this critically important time in our collective history. I have always been guided and driven by my ancestors, the advice of my elders, and the goal of First Nations self-determination and self-reliance. I am humbled to lead OFNTSC on this journey of reconciliation in lifting our people up to respond to the most pressing issues of our time, and I look forward to hitting the ground running with the important work of fulfilling the mandate of OFNTSC.”

Prior to her joining the OFNTSC Melanie has held previous executive positions with Waubetek Business Development Corporation, Serpent River First Nation Economic Development Corporation and Milman Industries Inc. “On behalf of the Board of Directors I want to welcome Melanie to the OFNTSC. We look forward to working with her on critical infrastructure issues that affect First Nations in Ontario.” added Wes Bova.

For more information on this appointment please contact:

Colin French, Communications Officer, OFNTSC

(416) 651 1443 ext. 256 cfrench@ofntsc.org

 

2018 First Nations Water Symposium

Mark your calendars for the 2018 First Nations Water Symposium! The Ontario First Nations Technical Services Corporation (OFNTSC) is pleased to deliver another successful Symposium which is scheduled for May 14 – 16, 2018 at the Sheraton on the Falls, Niagara Falls, Ontario.

Please visit www.firstnationswatersymposium.com for additional event information!

Have further questions?  Please contact Corrie Hill, Symposium Coordinator at (461) 651-1443 ext. 222 or by email at chill@ofntsc.org

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