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Remembering Cynthia Bertolin

Cynthia Bertolin

It is with profound sadness that Cando has learned of the passing of Cynthia Bertolin.

Cynthia was a key part of the Cando family for many years serving as Cando Executive Director from the late 1990's through 2002.

Cando extends its condolences to Cynthia's family and friends and we wish them comfort and peace during this very difficult time.


Read obituary here.


Youth Feel Heard, Energized at First-Ever Summit

Youth Delegates 2018

Cando Economic Development Youth Summit stop for a group photo at theend of the learning and hard work. 59 delegates, ranging in age from 18-30 years, from across the country, both Indigenous – First Nations, Inuit and Métis – and non-Indigenous, brought together at the River Cree Resort on the Enoch Cree Nation west of Edmonton from July 22-26, 2018.

By Shari Narine
Cando Contributor

Delegates left Cando’s first Economic Development Youth Summit knowing something very important: they were heard.

Jonathan Nolan Morgan Bellerose“I believe the youth in here, and many others across the country, are getting their education and getting that experience in business and economic development where they can have those voices at the decision-making tables,” said Jonathan Nolan, 27, from the Mississauga First Nation.

Jonathan Nolan (left) with Morgan Bellerose holding the MTV music video award won by Drezus who was performing during the Youth Summit gala evening.

“Their voices matter there and they matter here,” he said. Nolan understands the importance of being heard, especially as he sits as the youngest member on the board of governors for Sault College, in Sault Ste. Marie, where he graduated from the Social Work program in April 2018. Now, he’s wanting to return to school and earn his Bachelor in Business.

Cheyenne McGinnisCheyenne McGinnis, 25, says her job in commercial banking and relationship manager with BMO in Nanaimo, BC, has shown her the importance of listening to what people have to say. And here, she felt listened to.

“This has given me a chance to have a voice,” said McGinnis, who is a member of the Saddle Lake Cree Nation, but grew up on the Blood Reserve.

Cheyenne McGinnis (right) participates with her team case study as part of the Youth Summit.

“I think it’s really inspiring to see our next generation are pushing those boundaries and really taking risks and coming out of their shells here as Indigenous youth because they are beautiful and they are smart and their voices are important in this country,” she said.

Nolan and McGinnis were two of 59 delegates, ranging in age from 18-30 years, from across the country, both Indigenous – First Nations, Inuit and Métis – and non-Indigenous, brought together at the River Cree Resort on the Enoch Cree Nation west of Edmonton from July 22-26.

Read full story here.

Click here to download the latest issue of Cando Connect with 20 pages of Youth SUmmit coverage and photos!


Successful Inaugural Youth Summit Could Lead to Annual Event

Ray Wanuch Group

Ray Wanuch, Cando Executive Director, welcomes 59 youth delegates to the Cando Economic Development Youth Summit.

By Shari Narine
Cando Contributor

Cando’s first ever Economic Development Youth Summit was such a success organizers hope to make it an annual event.

Ray Wanuch“These are going to be the next economic development officers and leadership in their communities,” said Cando Executive Director Ray Wanuch of the participants.

Almost 60 of the brightest young minds took part in the four-day event held at the River Cree Resort on the Enoch Cree Nation just west of Edmonton.

Ray Wanuch, Cando Executive Director.

“These are our future generation leaders. As they get informed and empowered and educated then they can do some community and economic development work within their respective communities,” said Cando Alberta Director Shawna Morning Bull

Wanuch was impressed with the delegates, although the goal of attracting First Nations, Métis, Inuit and non Indigenous delegates aged 18-30 years from each of the 10 provinces and three territories did not happen. Delegates were selected through an application process, which included an essay on economic development and land management.

“The future is very bright. We all contribute to the gross domestic product in this country and we know there should be more Indigenous GDP. I think with the skills these youth now have, they’re going to be able to be very productive when it comes to generate an economic base not only in their communities but in Canada,” said Wanuch.

Shawna Morning BullThe event included three panels: lands planning, economic development and entrepreneurship. Delegates were given case studies and information and had to apply what they learned.

Shawna Morning Bull, Cando Alberta Director.

It’s important that today’s youth understand what it takes for their communities to be economically viable, Wanuch says.

“The economic horse leads the social cart,” he said.

Governments rarely have enough money to address these social concerns, he points out, so indigenous communities need to be able to bankroll the solutions through strong economic development.

Wanuch is confident that participants came away with both knowledge and energy. Feedback through a quick survey was positive.

“We’re on the right track,” he said, pointing out delegates rated the event as five stars out of five.

“I think the summit opened up a lot of eyes, maybe a career in economic development,” said Morning Bull. “Economic development is where it’s at to get your communities going.”

The summit was 20 years in the making, says event coordinator Carmelle Nepoose, noting that Cando had wanted to focus on youth in some manner. The summit was put on at a price tag of $160,000 as delegates had all their costs covered. At the last minute, RBC stepped up with $85,000. That kind of support will be needed going forward, she says.

Read the full article here.

Click here to download the latest issue of Cando Connect with 20 pages of Youth SUmmit coverage and photos!

Co-operatives First - Creating Connections

By Sam Laskaris
Cando Contributor

Following a pair of test runs in 2017, Co-operatives First officials have expanded a free workshop that they offer.

The plan is to present Creating Connections: A Workshop on Exploring Co-operatives a total of eight times in 2018. Ideally the workshop would be held twice in each of the four western Canadian provinces this year.
The workshop was created so that economic development as well as community and business leaders can learn how the co-operative business model can enhance opportunities.

Kyle WhiteCo-operatives First is a Saskatoon-based organization whose mandate is to help Indigenous and rural communities prosper in western Canada. Officials from the organization teamed up with Cando, which promotes Indigenous economic development across the country, to debut the workshop a year ago.

Kyle White, the education and engagement lead for Co-operatives First.

For starters, the workshop was held in Saskatoon last September. The workshop was also offered at the Cando Conference staged in October in Fredericton, N.B.

Positive feedback convinced Co-operatives First officials to offer the workshop with more frequency this year.

“At this stage we’re really raising awareness about these workshops,” said Kyle White, the education and engagement lead for Co-operatives First. “We’re open for partnerships with economic developers, universities, communities and all sorts of people that can benefit from these.”

The first workshop of 2018 was held at Calgary’s Ambrose University in February. Workshops were also staged that same month at a pair of British Columbia communities, Revelstoke and Grand Forks.

Read the full article here.

Co-operatives First Continues To Offer Online Governance Course

By Sam Laskaris
Cando Contributor

About 500 people from around the world have taken a free online governance course since it was launched this past October.

The course, titled Governance In Co-operatives, is offered by Co-operatives First, a Saskatoon-based organization whose mandate includes to help Indigenous and rural communities not only to grow but also thrive.

Those who sign up for the course will have the opportunity to learn about vital concepts in the governance of organizations. Case studies of co-operations and corporations will be offered throughout the course.
The course was developed in partnership with the Centre for the Study of Co-operatives at the University of Saskatchewan.

Kyle White, the Education and Engagement Lead for Co-operatives First, said the centre at the Saskatchewan university has a solid reputation globally.

“When it was offered it made sense folks around the world heard about it,” White said. “We had people from Europe, Asia, Africa and all across Canada take the course.”

Co-operatives First has a mission focused on increasing awareness of its ventures in Canada’s four westernmost provinces.

But since it is an online course, Governance In Co-operatives is offered to anyone, regardless of what country they are in.

Those who are interested in enrolling and taking the course can do so at any time. There are three ways to be a participant with the course.

Read the full article here.


Cando releases 2017 Conference videos...