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Collaborative partnerships are achieving results

Social performance case studies from the 2014 Sustainable Electricity Annual Report, Engaged for a Sustainable Future.


CEA members are successfully engaging Aboriginal Peoples to build more positive, mutually beneficial relationships with the communities in which they operate:

Increasing cultural awareness at ATCO Electric

ATCO Electric has a long-standing commitment to consultation and cooperation, working closely with First Nations to understand their culture and communities. A meeting with Bigstone Cree Nation, for example, revealed that ATCO Electric staff would benefit from Aboriginal cultural awareness training. Two camps were held in 2013, with 28 employees working directly with Elders to acquire a deeper understanding of what it means to be an Aboriginal person. Employees participated in a personal healing journey and learned how local vegetation, fish and animals are used for food and medicine. ATCOElectricFirstNations

ATCO Electric employees like Dinesh Sharma were invited to explore many aspects of traditional First Nations culture at the Big Stone Cree Nation cultural camps. Photo courtesy of ATCO Electric.

BC Hydro earns par Gold-Level certification

BC Hydro and Power Authority has earned PAR gold-level certification—the highest level of achievement in the Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business’ Progressive Aboriginal Relations Program—in recognition of its commitment to Aboriginal employment, business development, capacity development and community engagement. Last year, BC Hydro made significant investments in Aboriginal training, providing over $1 million in funding to the Northern Lights College Foundation and $100,000 to the North East Native Advancing Society. BC Hydro also works with numerous education institutions to award scholarships to Aboriginal students across the province.

Building postitive relationships with the Ktunaxa Nation Council

Throughout 2013, Columbia Power Corporation met with the Ktunaxa Nation Council, one of its key First Nations stakeholders, to discuss next steps after the completion of the Waneta Expansion Project. In the fall, Columbia Power brought together representatives from seven Ktunaxa Nation Council government sectors as well as four Bands. Presentations were made on topics such as environmental stewardship and habitat protection, how Columbia Power engages with communities, and an overview of the company’s strategic plan and the potential for future power projects in Ktunaxa Nation territory.

FortisBC supports the National Day of Reconciliation

Building and strengthening relationships with Aboriginal Peoples throughout British Columbia is a key pillar of FortisBC Inc.’s community relations. Recognizing that the National Day of Reconciliation is a significant event for the Aboriginal groups it serves, in September 2013 FortisBC presented a $15,000 donation to Reconciliation Canada’s Ambassador Chief Dr. Robert Joseph, a Hereditary Chief of the Gwawaenuk First Nation. These funds will be used to support workshops and outreach activities to transform and renew relationships with Aboriginal Peoples and all Canadians.

Manitoba Hydro provides pre-placement training to Aboriginal candidates

Pre-placement training initiatives help Aboriginal Peoples acquire the minimum qualifications needed for entry into Manitoba Hydro’s power electrician, operating technician and power line technician training programs. These initiatives help address the gaps related to education by allowing trainees to complete the high school prerequisites for entry into the trades and gain on-the-job work experience in the trades. Since inception, more than 400 trainees have been hired into the programs and in 2013, Manitoba Hydro’s first female power line technician completed her apprenticeship program.

Giving First Nations the skills to contribute to SaskPower projects

In 2013, SaskPower and the Black Lake First Nation entered into a formal basic skills training initiative called the Certified Workforce Education Program, which is providing 64 Band members with the skills necessary (e.g., from cooking to heavy equipment maintenance) to contribute to the development of the Tazi Twé hydroelectric project. Program participants will also receive a certificate from Northlands College, helping them translate their new skills to future job opportunities with SaskPower or other employers in the region.

TransCanada draws on the Aboriginal community to meet its need for skilled employees

The Aboriginal and Native American Employee Network is dedicated to the recruitment, retention and advancement of Aboriginal employees within TransCanada. It offers opportunities to share experiences and ideas, creates opportunities for mentorship and sponsorship, and provides links to culturally appropriate community supports in all regions. TransCanada also awards hundreds of thousands of dollars in scholarships, bursaries, university chair and research positions, and in-kind donations to Aboriginal students and educational organizations across the country.

Use the menu at the right to read more member success stories and case studies from the 2014 Sustainable Electricity Annual Report, Engaged for a Sustainable Future, or get the PDF here.