Investing in cultural and recreational infrastructure builds strong, dynamic communities, supports economic growth, and promotes people’s health and wellbeing.
Today, François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, and Trade and Export Development Minister and Meadow Lake MLA Jeremy Harrison, on behalf of Government Relations and Minister responsible for First Nations, Métis and Northern Affairs Lori Carr, announced funding for the new Thunderchild Wellness Centre northeast of Turtleford.
The new facility on Thunderchild First Nation will include offices for a dentist and a doctor, a pharmacy, social and childcare facilities, a full-sized ice rink, and a field house. There will also be space for a variety of events from weddings to band council meetings and community gatherings.
The centre will serve Thunderchild First Nation and the surrounding communities of Turtleford, St. Walburg, Edam, Spruce Lake, Mervin, Live Long, Glaslyn, Turtle Lake, Witchekan Lake, Pelican Lake, Makwa Lake, and Loon Lake.
While primarily focused on serving First Nations communities, it will be open to all. Having these amenities in one place will provide access to services that would otherwise be difficult to get, increasing opportunities for people of Thunderchild First Nation and surrounding communities to develop healthy lifestyles and thrive for years to come.
The Government of Canada is contributing $13.5 million to this project through the Community, Culture and Recreation Stream of the Investing in Canada Plan, and the Government of Saskatchewan is contributing $4.5 million.
“Community hubs like the Thunderchild Wellness Centre are the backbone of our communities and important focal points for activities that bring people together and help them flourish and grow,” said Champagne. “The Government of Canada recognizes that Indigenous peoples are marginalized when it comes to getting access to health services and is determined to close the gap. This project will help accomplish this while supporting local economic growth to build a bright future for all.”
“The Government of Saskatchewan is proud to be investing $4.5 million toward this important centre for Thunderchild First Nation and neighbouring communities,” Harrison said. “A great deal of work has gone into planning for this project. Once built, the wellness centre will help improve quality of life and give the community a new facility they can be proud of.”