ARCHIVED - Piikani Nation Housing Authority

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The Piikani Nation is transforming the lives of its band members through its innovative five year comprehensive housing strategy. New homes are being built; older homes renovated, youth are learning skilled trades and people are proud to live on the Piikani Nation reserve.

Transcript: Piikani Nation Housing Authority

Narrator voiceover:
With a comprehensive 5 year housing strategy, the Piikani Nation is transforming the lives of its band members.

New homes are being built; older homes renovated, youth are learning skilled trades and people are proud to live on the Piikani Nation reserve.

Narrator voiceover:
The Piikani Nation in Southwestern Alberta has a population of 3,500 with over 1,500 band members living on reserve.

Until recently, the housing situation in this community was bleak….

Natoshia Bastien:
We experienced a housing crisis in the community, so we created a 5-year action plan to address these issues…

Out of the 405 homes that are on the Nation, about 90% required major repairs…so we've um…were able to access funding through Canada's Economic Action Plan, and address 160 within a year and a half.

We've assisted approximately 110 home occupants to bring their houses up to a level of health and safety…and then we've transferred the house title to them so they're now the homeowners

We've created our housing corporation, which serves as the lender for home ownership, so in turn we're keeping the interest in the community, which is allowing us to revolve those funds and build a greater number of units

Adam North Peigan:
The Piikani Employment Services has been a very very important partner in our housing program and we've embarked on a partnership between Chief and Council the Housing Authority, as well as the Housing Corporation

Narrator:
The 48-week Skills Training Partnership is a key component of Piikani's 5 year housing initiative in which youth earn their first year journeyman's certificate.

Herman Many Guns:
We have a large population of young people, and in order to be successful in achieving some of our housing plans we had to join together and recruit these young people and teach them for the future.

Narrator:
The students are taught electrical, carpentry and plumbing skills often by journeymen band members.

Gordon Little Mustache:
I work with our students….we teach them…ah…the fundamentals …we try to get ‘em job ready…and I must say we're getting better students all the time…we've got students enrolled in first year, so hopefully we'll have more journeymen here on the reservation

Jim Swag:
The success in terms of training, is 95% success rate…employment wise 60-70%
.

Herman Many Guns:
What we've done here through the housing, the staff and the team …I think we gave  hope to our people…

Kelvin Buffalo:
When I moved here it's ….like God's world (laughs)…It's a whole new…a whole new situation here…

Natoshia Bastien:
People are happier….they do have hope….we feel proud to be Piikani again

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