The Urban Aboriginal Strategy (UAS) was first developed in 1997 by the Federal Government of Canada to help respond to the needs facing Aboriginal people living in key urban centres. Through the UAS, the Government of Canada partners with other governments, community organizations and Aboriginal people to support projects that respond to local priorities. The Thunder Bay Urban Aboriginal Strategy (TBUAS) was launched in the City of Thunder Bay in 2003, with a goal of addressing urban aboriginal family poverty. The TBUAS is currently administered by Shkoday Abinojiiwak Obimiwedoon. The Urban Aboriginal Advisory Committee is the community body that oversees the strategic direction of the TBUAS and ensures it remains a community driven initiative. The committee is comprised of Aboriginal service organizations, community partners, federal, provincial and municipal representatives.
The Thunder Bay Urban Aboriginal Strategy (TBUAS) is unique in the sense that the participating agencies adopted a different approach to delivering the project in the City of Thunder Bay compared to other urban centres. In Thunder Bay, every agency has committed to working together as one to develop the proposal - a truly collaborative approach. In Thunder Bay, the Urban Aboriginal Strategy focuses on actions to improve the socio-economic conditions of Aboriginal people in order to create a sustainable and healthy community. Addressing issues related to poverty are a key priority. Findings from the Thunder Bay Urban Aboriginal Task Force Report indicate that a high percentage of Thunder Bay’s urban Aboriginal children and their families are living in extreme poverty. Over the last eight years, the TBUAS has made great strides in bringing awareness, collaboration and action on the many issues facing the Aboriginal community in Thunder Bay. Through extensive community consultation, community strategies have been and continue to be developed that identify priority areas and solutions to move the project forward.
Artist: Kevin Belmore
This image depicts four people holding hands that are raised in honour to the Creator. The eagle is in the spirit form which is a blessing to the people. The three background colours represent higher levels of learning and promote emotional spiritual and mental growth. It also represents all involved including the three levels of government. At the bottom is the Sleeping Giant which represents the people of Thunder Bay.