Matawa First Nations Youth Mine Readiness Training
LONG LAKE #58 First Nation – Students from Long Lake #58 First Nation embarked on a journey today. Cold weather, temperatures of -28c greeted students starting on the Matawa First Nations Ring of Fire Aboriginal Training Alliance (RoFATA).
It all starts with the drum, it is where all things start for our people,” stated Gilbert Legarde, the Elder as 15 students started the Ring of Fire Aboriginal Training Alliance Job Skills /Mining Readiness being operated by Kiikenomaga Kikenjigewen Employment & Training Services (KKETS).
Peter Rasevych, the RoFATA Program Co-ordinator explained that each Matawa community is hosting an eight week RoFATA program, along with one in Thunder Bay for off-reserve residents.
The eight week program leads to the second tier program where participants will move to a mining specific program.
Working together to move our community forward.
The RoFATA program started in August, when the alliance was announced in Thunder Bay.
Peter explained how the program starts with the eight-week session, and then the students head to the next step in their career path.
The key difference is that instead of just training, the RoFATA moves through training to jobs for successful graduates with Noront Resources Inc.
Students will receive a certificate of completion after each step of the program.
The program moves from the classroom toward hands on experience.
Additionally, RoFATA offers students the opportunity to complete high school.
That opportunity is through the KKETS Aboriginal Skills and Advancement Program (ASAP).
Opening the morning’s session, Gilbert explained that to make it in today’s world education is important. That is the guiding effort behind the program.
The Matawa Chiefs are working with the Ontario and federal government to ensure that the jobs in Matawa First Nations communities are able be done by member community members.
The Mining Readiness Program runs Monday to Friday from nine to four, it is a thirty-hour per week program. Each program is set by the First Nation’s in when the program will run.
For example in Aroland First Nation, the training will run from Wednesday to Saturday in the evenings.
The course is broken out into modules, and is designed to enhance success for the participants.
We are in the first stage, learning about what the mining industry will expect of students. That move next to the tier two Occupations Specific Skills Training.
That is the ‘Pre Camp ‘ stage where programing shifts to specific mining operations.
For students in Long Lake #58, today the students were very interested in starting the program. They are starting on a journey of learning, and a path to a new life.
For more information visit: www.matawa.on.ca