CEDI's goal is to help communities build bonds that will support and develop economic cooperation for the long term.
In a time of reconciliation and based on the premise that long-term relationships need to have a solid foundation, the CEDI experience opens the way for First Nations and nearby municipal communities to create economic and social advantages.
By working together, the CEDI communities explore ways to:
- present a strong and united voice when approaching other levels of government;
- increase access to funding from other levels of government;
- provide opportunities for local business to thrive, and to create jobs.
With new support from Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada, FCM's continuing partnership with the Council for the Advancement of Native Development Officers (CANDO), based in Edmonton, Alberta, is ensuring that Phase 2 CEDI partnerships will flourish until 2021.
The six CEDI groups within Phase 1 (2013-2016) of the program saw 7 First Nations and 9 municipal/regional partners working together in all regions across Canada. Some embarked on economic diversification and tourism plans. Others sought to attract new investors to their region. Most found that in the end, their partnership had the power to implement joint visions they took time to articulate at the start.
More than anything, CEDI partners came to value that they are stronger together.
Click on a map below to learn more about the partnerships that made CEDI’s Phase 1 so successful:
Seabird Island Band and District of Kent are adjacent communities in BC's Fraser Valley, approximately 125 km east of Vancouver, where both agriculture and the salmon fishery have been important to the local culture and economy. The two communities are now looking to collaborate on a joint marketing strategy to promote tourism and business development in their communities.
Along the southwestern edge of Lesser Slave Lake and 250 km north of Edmonton lie the Town of Slave Lake, Sawridge First Nation and MD of Lesser Slave River. These three communities came together following a devastating wildfire and realized that working together on common issues would help them to achieve more.
Located 625 km northwest of Winnipeg, these "three communities with one heart" are working together to better promote their region and address major development and infrastructure needs. The similar sizes of OCN and The Pas provide a unique critical mass in northern Manitoba that has created a regional service centre.
Comprising two southern, road-accessible communities and a fly-in First Nation 425 km to the north, these three communities represent the widest distance between CEDI partners. They are demonstrating that three diverse communities can work together effectively and are using the strengths of each partner to address the challenge of access to nutritious food in northern communities.
This bilingual community pairing near the Quebec‒Ontario border has decided to pursue a joint regional tourism strategy and improved coordination among the economic development departments of all three communities. The three communities meet monthly to advance their joint strategy and share relevant information among their communities. They have led the way in accessing a CEDI peer mentor to enhance local collaborative work.
Strategically situated close to the Quebec and Maine borders, these two communities have found common ground in their desire to preserve their distinct cultural heritages - both Acadian and Maliseet. Their unique location along the Trans-Canada Highway offers a natural advantage to collaborative development at the "Gateway to Atlantic Canada".