The site of the S.A.Y. Health and Community Centre, which is a joint initiative of the Skowkale, Aitchelitz and Yakweakwioose First Nations. (Eric J. Welsh/ The Progress)

Federal government contributing nearly $4 million to First Nations community centre

The S.A.Y. Health and Community Centre will be built on a piece of land off Chilliwack River Road

A group of First Nations in the Chilliwack region is receiving nearly $4,000,000 in federal government funding to build a new community and recreation centre.

Construction has already begun on the S.A.Y. Community Centre, which will occupy a piece of land along Chilliwack River Road and include a gymnasium, multi-purpose space, weight and fitness room, playground, sports field, entry atrium, cultural space, washrooms and other amenities.

The Skowkale, Aitchelitz and Yakweakwioose First Nations are contributing $1,321,410 to the project while the federal government kicks in $3,964,230 through the ‘Investing in Canada Plan.’

Twenty one infrastructure projects were announced in B.C. last week.

The Seabird Island Band is building a cultural education, community resource centre and longhouse with $2,167,875 in federal funding.

READ MORE: Funds announced for B.C. Indigenous entrepreneurs

READ MORE: Chilliwack groups receive money from province’s emergency preparedness fund

The new facility will include an arts room, kitchen, carving room, open carving shed, accessible washrooms, pow wow grounds and round room.

The Seabird Island Band is contributing $722,625 to the project.

The Shxw’ow’hamel First Nation in Hope is using $648,750 of its own funds plus $1,946,250 from the federal government to build a spray park and playground along with lighted soccer and slo-pitch fields.

“Our Government understands the important role that sport, recreation and active living play in our communities,” said Carla Qualtrough, Canada’s Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion. “We are also investing in infrastructure projects across the Lower Mainland that are working to make communities more resilient to climate change and increasing flood risks, working to improve community and health centres as well as drinking water facilities. We are supporting local economies and investing in the success of Canadians.”

The Government of Canada is investing more than $44.5 million into the 21 projects that have been announced.

B.C.’s provincial government is contributing over $19.2 million and applicants (municipalities, Indigenous communities and not-for-profits) are adding more than $22.3 million.


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