THUNDER BAY – Crimebeat – The Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug First Nation received some needed help from the York Regional Police. The effort in conjunction with the Ontario Provincial Police and the York Regional Police are also likely to help foster good relations between law enforcement and First Nations. Project Dream Catcher, and Constable Natasha Jones, a Community Services School Resource Officer in #4 District has collected more than 4,500 pounds of food and supplies for shipment to the Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug (People of the Lake) Aboriginal community on Big Trout Lake in Northern Ontario.
Constable Jones was moved by the plight of the community after she saw the documentary Third World Canada by Gemini Award nominee Andree Cazabon last February. She was determined to assist the People of the Lake community and found many community partners, including the Ontario Provincial Police, more than willing to lend a hand.
PODS Moving and Storage Company donated containers for the shipment, Easy Pack Corporation donated collection boxes after #4 District staff filled existing boxes to overflowing, Gemsen and Walmart donated supplies and the City of Vaughan donated space on its property to store the containers behind the #4 District station.
Manitoulin Transport, a Leader in Transportation Solutions, graciously donated the delivery of the supplies as far as Thunder Bay and OPP Sergeant Marty Singleton, the North West Regional Provincial Liaison Coordinator, has volunteered to drive the supplies the remaining 18 hours, across ice roads, into the community of 1,500.
Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug is accessible only by air in the summer and ice roads in the winter, making goods incredibly expensive and beyond the reach of most residents. Families are crowded into substandard housing and many are lacking even the basic necessities. Items collected by Constable Jones include non-perishable food, baby formula and diapers, hygiene products, clothing, sports equipment and blankets.
The shipment left #4 District, located at 2700 Rutherford Road in the City of Vaughan, on Saturday, January 21, 2012. At approximately 10:30 a.m., Constable Jones and her platoon-mates loaded the supplies into trucks. Following the loading of the trucks, OPP native drummers celebrated the endeavour and Constable Jones offered her thanks for the support she has received during Project Dream Catcher.
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