FedNor invests to boost tourism, immigration and economic growth in Thunder Bay-Superior North


As our economy recovers from the impact of COVID-19, the Government of Canada is stepping up efforts to help Northern Ontario municipalities, First Nation communities and not-for-profit organizations not only survive, but strengthen and build for a sustainable future.

The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health, and Member of Parliament, Thunder Bay-Superior North, and Marcus Powlowski, Member of Parliament, Thunder Bay—Rainy River, today announced more than $1 million to support six initiatives designed to create and maintain jobs, support recovery efforts and maximize economic development and growth opportunities across the Thunder Bay-Superior North region. The announcement was made on behalf of the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for FedNor.

Thunder Bay-Superior North initiatives supported by FedNor

Thunder Bay Community Economic Development Commission

The Thunder Bay Community Economic Development Commission (CEDC) will receive $490,500 to support the implementation of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada's (IRCC) Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot (RNIP) in the region. Specifically, this project will enable outreach and education activities with employers regarding immigration pathways available to help meet their workforce needs. In addition, the initiative will support employer diversity readiness training and the marketing and promoting of in-demand jobs to newcomers nationally and internationally. Designed to spread the benefits of economic immigration to smaller communities, RNIP supports permanent residence for skilled foreign workers wanting relocate to a participating community. Thunder Bay is one of the 11 successful applicant communities under the IRCC's RNIP.

Red Rock Indian Band

Enhancing tourism

To help maximize the tourism and economic potential of Northwestern Ontario’s Indigenous communities, a Government of Canada  investment of $237,250 will help the Red Rock Indian Band modernize the Chalet Lodge. Provided through FedNor’s Northern Ontario Development Program, this targeted investment will help transform the facility into an all-season tourism hub. Specifically the funding will be used to complete a variety of critical improvements such as electrical, heating, ventilation, and accessibility upgrades. The funding will also support the installation of new doors, windows and insulation, which will allow the Chalet Lodge to open during the winter and shoulder seasons.

Strategic planning

A FedNor investment of $24,925 will enable the Red Rock Indian Band to complete a feasibility study to determine the viability of establishing a wild rice cultivation and processing operation. Identified by the First Nation as a priority project to support self-sustainability, the study will explore the social and economic benefits of a developing a wild rice cultivation business, including revenue estimates, community growth and job creation.

Northern Policy Institute

Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot

FedNor funding of $150,000 will enable the Northern Policy Institute (NPI) to collect, assess and conduct annual reporting on the impacts and benefits of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada's Rural and Northern Immigration Pilot. Specifically, the funding will be used to collect and record data from new arrivals, employers and service providers to evaluate the successes, challenges and opportunities of the program on the five participating Northern Ontario communities (Thunder Bay, Sault Ste. Marie, Sudbury, Timmins and North Bay).    

Youth Internship

NPI will also receive a FedNor investment of $31,500 to hire a youth intern for a one-year period. While on the job, the intern will coordinate a series of events and activities designed to encourage community partnerships and facilitate the sharing of best practices aimed at attracting and retaining newcomers to the region.

Township of Nipigon

To support the recovery and growth of Northern Ontario’s tourism industry, the Township of Nipigon will receive FedNor funding of $96,500 to upgrade and promote local tourism attractions. Specifically, this targeted investment will enable the community to upgrade the Edge Arts Studio and Gallery, complete landscaping work at the Bridgeview Lookout and install banners promoting local attractions and events. Once complete, this priority project is expected to help increase tourism and spending at local businesses by enhancing the overall visitor experience and encouraging extended stays.

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Catherine Mounier-Desrochers
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages

Barclay Babcock
Communications Officer

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