Ontario Supporting Community Infrastructure Development for Pikangikum First Nation Youth

Posted on April 14, 2023

PIKANGIKUM – The Ontario government is providing $793,050 through the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC) to Pikangikum First Nation to build the Youth Wellness Hub and expand the Youth Sawmill. This investment supports important infrastructure upgrades and economic growth, and creates employment opportunities for Indigenous people in Northwestern Ontario.

“Our government is proud to support projects like the Youth Wellness Hub and Youth Sawmill that contribute to a stronger, healthier and resilient Indigenous community,” said Greg Rickford, Minister of Northern Development and Minister of Indigenous Affairs. “Today’s investments demonstrate our commitment to enhancing infrastructure and economic development opportunities, and improving the quality of life for northerners.”

NOHFC is funding the following two projects:

  • $600,000 to build the Youth Wellness Hub, Outdoor Cultural Centre, and Safe House Village reception area. The project will provide a safe and secure place for learning, development, healing and cultural teachings for the community.
  • $193,050 to renovate, upgrade and expand the Youth Sawmill to increase manufacturing capacity. The project will provide employment and training for community members, as well as provide finished products at low costs to the community.

The NOHFC promotes economic prosperity across Northern Ontario by providing financial assistance to projects—big and small, rural and urban—that stimulate growth, job creation and skills development. Since June 2018, the NOHFC has invested more than $639 million in 5,265 projects in Northern Ontario, leveraging more than $2 billion in investment and creating or sustaining over 8,421 jobs.

Quick Fact

  • The Ontario government launched new and improved NOHFC programs that support more projects in rural northern communities and make it easier for more people and businesses to apply. The programs target existing and emerging markets, provide more work opportunities for Indigenous people and address the skilled labour shortage in the North.

Additional Resources


“I’m very grateful for the Youth Wellness Hub. It brings unity and teaches youth about our culture, hunting, fishing and traditional food preparation. The hub keeps our youth active and learning, and also brings them hope. Thank you.” – Shirley Keeper, Chief, Pikangikum First Nation

“We are grateful to have received assistance from NOHFC to improve the sawmill. The infrastructure upgrades will help improve efficiency and productivity. For example, the cribs are a great addition to the sawmill, as we no longer need to worry about the weather outside. Logs and slabs stored in the cribs can dry throughout the year and then be used as chips for the school boilers during the winter months.” – Kurtis Strang, Sawmill Lead, Pikangikum First Nation

Media Contacts

Erika Robson, Minister’s Office -- 416-450-1309 -- erika.robson@ontario.ca

Media Desk, Communications Branch -- mediadesk.ndm@ontario.ca