Group of females at work talking together in office

Transitions to Work – Gander

The “Transitions to Work” program is a community partnership between the Qalipu First Nation’s Education & Training Department, the Gander Women’s Centre, and the Department of Advanced Education, Skills and Labour (AESL). The program will provide employment readiness training and supports for Non EI eligible women so that they can access entry level employment.

Participants to the program will hone their skills in problem solving and workplace communications, learn budgeting skills, benefit from career exploration through identifying personal strengths, and obtain workplace certificates such as First-Aid and WHIMIS.

If you or someone you know would be interested in participating in this program, please check out the poster below for more information.

TTW (Fall program) POSTER (Monique Carroll)

Logan MacDonald, Made Space, Photography, 2018

Indigenous Arts at Grenfell Art Gallery

Artist Panel: Resurgence and Media: Creative Practices in Indigenous Storytelling

Friday 30 November, 1-2:30 pm Grenfell Art Gallery

Featuring artists Douglas Walbourne-Gough, Logan MacDonald, Meagan Musseau, and Melissa Tremblett in discussion about their diverse practices in relation to the transmission and revitalization of Indigenous stories and experiences.

Visiting Opening and Artist Talk

Friday 30 November, 4:30-7 pm

As always, these events are free, and all are welcome!


Visiting reflects and unpacks indigenous/settler identity, pan-indigenous cross-cultural exchange, cultural revival, and queerness. Not to provide answers, but to explore endless possibilities that reflect the diversity of individual experiences. While mediating these experiences through installation, drawing and photography, these works contemplate the dynamics of community and belonging while negotiating access and viewership.

Visiting: Logan MacDonald is presented by Grenfell Art Gallery in collaboration with Identify: A Celebration of Indigenous Arts and Culture and Eastern Edge Artist-Run Centre. In this exhibition MacDonald looks at manipulated landscapes, earthworks, structures and signage established by Indigenous communities as a means to assert property against encroachment. These moments of intimacy and movement draw connections between body and land as both sites of colonization and resilience in queer and Indigenous people.

– Emily Critch, Curator

 This is one of the 200 exceptional projects funded through the Canada Council for the Arts’ New Chapter program. With this $35M investment, the Council supports the creation and sharing of the arts in communities across Canada.


Newly Elected Qalipu Chief and Council Officially Take Office, Marked by Swearing in Ceremony

An election to choose Qalipu’s governing body, the Chief and Council, takes place every three years, and was recently conducted this year on October 23.  Today, the newly elected Chief and Council take office following a 30-day transition period.  The occasion was marked with a Swearing in Ceremony at the Civic Centre in Corner Brook.

The ceremony was officiated by Chief Mi’sel Joe of the Miawpukek First Nation, included musical sharing by Troy Bennett and Friends on the Community Big Drum, Paul Pike, and the Corner Brook Aboriginal Women’s Association.

Chief Brendan Mitchell, re-elected for a second term, said he is looking forward to working together in unity with the new Council, building upon initiatives that were started during his first term, and striving to achieve shared goals.

“Members of Council will have unique priorities and vision for their communities, however we share common interests including achievement of positive results in new negotiations with government.  Veterans, members of the Canadian Armed Forces, RCMP and FNI members or members of other Mi’kmaq organizations who were involved in the enrolment Process and denied Founding Membership will all be considered”, he said.

Mitchell also noted other priority areas that he believes will be shared on Council.  He said,  “We share a common vision of cohesiveness and unity within our communities; advancing business development initiatives leading to greater self-sufficiency for Qalipu as a means to contributing financially to our Ward communities; working towards obtaining a food, social and ceremonial license that will benefit our membership; and continuing to support the cultural revitalization that we have witnessed in recent times.”

The ceremony was attended by representatives from local indigenous organizations, community members and government officials.

Following the swearing in ceremony the new Council went on to hold their first meeting together, at the Community Room in Corner Brook.

My Post (10)

Qalipu Community Development Group Celebrates World Children’s Day at Stepping Stones Daycare

World Children’s Day shines light on every child and their right to live in a world, safe from harm, where they are able to fulfill their full potential (UNICEF). In recognition of this special day, Qalipu First Nation’s Community Development team visited children at Stepping Stones Daycare, Corner Brook, to craft little shakers and sing songs. Smiles and music filled the room as children played their new instruments for the first time.

For more information about World Children’s Day, please visit

The word NEWS written in vintage wooden letterpress type in a wooden type drawer.

Announcement of Appointments

Qalipu First Nation is always looking for opportunities to participate in forums and discussions that advance the interests of our membership. We are often asked to sit on committees and boards to bring an Indigenous perspective to various issues. We are pleased to announce three recent appointments.

Tara Saunders, Tourism Development Officer, has recently been elected to the board of the Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada (ITAC). This national organization supports the growth of Indigenous tourism in Canada and addresses the demand for development and marketing of authentic Indigenous experiences. Tara has previously represented the Band on the provincial and atlantic ITAC advisory committees.

Sara Leah Hindy, Community Development Officer, has been appointed to the Newfoundland and Labrador Indigenous Education Advisory Committee. The committee is a working group of the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development, established to advance Indigenous education within the provincial K-12 school system and implement the recommendations outlined in the Premier’s Task Force on Improving Educational Outcomes.

Ralph Eldridge, Director of Community Development, has accepted an appointment as Director with Skills Canada Newfoundland and Labrador. Skills Canada’s mandate is to encourage and support a coordinated Canadian approach to promoting skilled trades and technologies to youth. The Board educates and encourages young Canadians to develop skills that address labour shortages and support Canada’s economic well-being.


Please Contribute to the Ktaqmkuk Mi’kmaq Place Names Project

Do you live in one of our Newfoundland Mi’kmaq communities such as Bay of Islands, Flat Bay, Burgeo, or Badger?  Do you have roots in Port au Port, Exploits or Millertown?

Have you camped, hunted or travelled Newfoundland areas and have stories or pictures that you would like to share?  Have you heard family stories about logging, guiding or fishing in Newfoundland?

We are collecting stories, pictures and information that we can add to our online interactive Mi’kmaq place names map.

Sharing knowledge through storytelling is a strong Mi’kmaq tradition that we continue today.  By capturing some of these memories, and adding them to an online interactive map, we can preserve stories about the places that are special to us.

If you would like to share, please contact Nicole Travers at the following email: or tel. (709) 634-3856.

We also invite you to view our interactive Ktaqmkuk Mi’kmaq Place Names map of Newfoundland.

Storyingtelling poster


Canada to reassess nearly 58,000 applicants for Founding Membership in the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation and commits to exploratory discussions on membership for veterans, military members, RCMP and FNI members

November 15, 2018 — Ottawa, ON — Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada

Canada remains committed to renewing the nation-to-nation relationship with Indigenous Peoples based on recognition of rights, respect, cooperation and partnership.

Today, Gudie Hutchings, Member of Parliament for Long Range Mountains and Yvonne Jones, Member of Parliament for Labrador, on behalf of the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations, along with Brendan Mitchell, President of the Federation of Newfoundland Indians (FNI) announced the next steps in the implementation of the Wells/Wells decision.

Canada and the FNI will be moving forward with reassessing approximately 58,000 individuals who were denied Founding Membership in the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation. In addition, parties have committed to enter into exploratory discussions to address outstanding concerns regarding members of the Canadian Armed Forces, veterans, RCMP and FNI members or members of other Mi’kmaq organizations who were named in the 2008 agreement and denied Founding Membership. Individuals affected by the exploratory discussions will be contacted once further information becomes available.

The review of the Enrolment Process is a result of the May 8, 2018 Federal Court decision on the David Wells and Sandra Wells case, which deemed the requirement for proof of self-identification to the Mi’kmaq community pre-dating 2008 to be unreasonable and unenforceable. Therefore, these individuals will have the right to request reassessment of their application and to submit additional documentation for the self-identification criterion.

Individuals affected by the Wells decision will be contacted by mail in January 2019 with information on how to submit additional documents to have their application reassessed. Those who wish to have their applications reviewed will be asked to submit the form and documents with a postmark no later than 100 days after receipt of their letter.

Quick Facts on the Wells Decision

  • On May 8, 2018, Federal Court released its decision in the David Wells and Sandra Wells case, stipulating that it was unreasonable to require applicants to provide proof of self-identification to the Mi’kmaq community pre-dating the 2008 Agreement for the Recognition of the Qalipu Mi’kmaq Band.
  • This decision means that the approximate 58,000 individuals whose application for Founding Membership to the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation was denied based on the self-identification criterion of the Enrolment Process, now have the right to request reassessment of their application and to submit additional documentation.
  • In January 2019 (TBD), the Government of Canada and Federation of Newfoundland Indians will notify the 58,000 applicants eligible for re-assessment as a result of the Wells decision on next steps for the reassessment of their application.
  • Those affected should ensure their mailing address is up to date by contacting the Qalipu toll-free telephone line (1-800-561-2266). Individuals whose mailing address has not changed since their initial application are not required to provide updated information.
  • Additional information on the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation Enrolment Process and the process through which the Wells decision will be implemented can be found online.

Quick Facts on the Exploratory Discussions

  • In the signature of the 2008 and 2013 Agreements and the Indemnity Agreement, the Government of Canada, the Federation of Newfoundland Indians, and the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation all agreed to the eligibility criteria individuals were required to meet in order to register under the Band.
  • In accordance with the 2008 and 2013 Agreements, and with the Enrolment and Appeals Processes, no exemptions or exceptions were granted to Veterans or members of other distinctive groups. However, Canada has heard the concerns regarding Canadian Armed Forces, RCMP, veterans, as well as members of FNI, who believe their applications were unfairly denied and will be entering into discussions with the FNI on this matter.
  • The Government of Canada recognizes and deeply values the meaningful contributions of Indigenous Veterans, RCMP, Canadian Armed Forces and other members of the military, to the development of our nation, and honours the sacrifices they have made in the defense of freedom and the pursuit of world peace.



“The creation of the Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation is an important step towards reconciliation and the recognition of Newfoundland’s Mi’kmaq People. Canada and the Federation of Newfoundland Indians will continue to work in close collaboration throughout the implementation of the Federal Court’s decision, in the spirit of upholding the integrity of founding membership.”

The Honourable Carolyn Bennett, M.D., P.C., M.P.
Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations

“I encourage all those who are eligible to submit additional documentation regarding the self-id criteria to do so.  Letters will be mailed to impacted individuals in the near future so I encourage you to ensure that your mailing address is up-to-date.  If you’ve moved or changed address, please contact 1-800-561-2266.  Let’s all look out for one another by sharing this news among our communities.”

Brendan Mitchell
President of the Federation of Newfoundland Indians


Maw-pemita’jik Qalipu’k November 2018 Newsletter


In this edition of Maw-pemita’jik Qalipu’k we’ve got a lot of great stories and pictures from our communities. Grassroots people are at the heart of our Nation and this is easily seen in the many events, workshops and volunteer efforts that we see happening in our communities. Find some of those stories featured on Pages 7-11.

Qalipu’s election was held on October 23 and our newly elected Council will officially take office in just one week. Find all the details on the Election, an invitation to the Swearing in Ceremony and explore the top three priorities of each member of Council on Pages 4-6.

Also, in this month’s newsletter, a story and pictures from the Experience Qalipu Indigenous Tourism Forum and a focus piece on one of the Indigenous tourism operators at work in our province, Pirates Haven RV Park and Chalets; an update on the Outdoor Education Program; student success stories and opportunities from the Qalipu Education and Training Department; and important updates from the Health division.

The big announcement yesterday came too late for publication but, we are all talking about it. The federal government has committed to enter into exploratory discussions regarding veterans, members of the Canadian Armed Forces, RCMP and FNI members or members of other Mi’kmaq organizations who were involved in the Enrolment Process and denied Founding Membership. Our Chief committed to fight for this in a Demonstration of Community Solidarity. Many stories were collected at that time, and people who are impacted by the outcome of these discussions will be contacted as more information becomes available.

The way forward for individuals impacted by the Wells/Wells court case is also in the works and details  of this were announced. What we want people to know now is that INAC cannot reach you if you do not have a current address listed with them.  If you’ve moved or had an address change, please update it by calling 1-800-561-2266.

Please, keep in touch. Share your community event, success story, news and anything else that would be of interest to the Inidgenous community by emailing me at




Message From the Chief – November 9, 2018


I greet you today humbled and thankful that you have chosen me to be your Chief for another term following our election on October 23.  I look forward to continuing to build on projects that were started in my first term including establishment of the Business Park, the pursuit of Indigenous hunting and fishing rights, partnerships, enhanced community engagement and cultural activity, and settling into our place among other First Nations in Canada with the Assembly of First Nations.

I would like to thank all those who were so supportive during election time.  Supporters, friends, and family, thank you for your faith in me and for your encouragement throughout the election and always.

I further offer thanks and congratulations to the newly elected Council: Randy Drover, Central Vice Chief; Keith Cormier, Western Vice Chief; Calvin Francis, Gander Bay; Frank Skeard, Glenwood; Andy Barker, Exploits; Bern White, Benoit’s Cove; Brian Dicks, Corner Brook; Jasen Benwah, Port au Port; Odelle Pike, Stephenville; Ivan J. White, St. George’s and; Ivan White, Flat Bay.  I look forward to working with the new Council in the years to come.

We begin our work together at 9:30 am, November 23, commencing with a Swearing in Ceremony at the Civic Centre in Corner Brook.

We are pleased to share that we will be joined by special guests Assembly of First Nations Regional Chief Morley Googoo, and Miawpukek First Nation Chief Mi’sel Joe.  All our community Chiefs, partners and government representatives have been invited to join us, and an invitation is extended to all of you! We hope to see many of you there as we mark a new beginning, a new chapter for the Qalipu First Nation.

Thank you and blessings for those who have moved on from Council, and to those who put themselves out there as candidates in the recent election.   I hope that you will all stay active in your communities and continue to share your gifts.

I am honoured to have the opportunity to serve our membership as Chief of Qalipu First Nation for the next three years.  I truly hope that our people can be united in the spirit of healing and reconciliation as we go forward to build a better tomorrow together, for our people and communities.


Chief Brendan Mitchell


Canadian Coast Guard Officer Training Program

Would you like to save lives, assist in search and rescue missions, patrol Canadian waters, support scientific surveys, and help deal with pollution in our oceans? These are some of the functions of the Canadian Coast Guard and through their Officer Training Program (OTP), you can become a Ship’s Officer and join the Fleet.

The OTP provides training in Marine Engineering and Marine Navigation over a 45-month training period.  Your education, text books, training costs, room and board are provided for, and participants are entitled to Federal Public Servant Benefits like medical, dental, vacation, pension and a monthly allowance.

The Qalipu Education and Training Department is committed to sharing opportunities that will help our members succeed and realize their full potential.  The OTP looks like an exciting opportunity to train and work toward making a real difference on Canada’s waters.  If this sounds interesting to you, find more information about the program here:

If this program isn’t for you, maybe something else is calling your name.  Please, feel free to talk to us about our programs and services including wage subsidies, grad incentive programs, employment and training opportunities and education funding.

Find contact information for our team here: and follow us on Facebook to stay in the know on valuable information about your benefits, as well as current opportunities, and announcements.