KASABONKIKA LAKE First Nation – The community of Kasabonika came out today to celebrate the 33rd anniversary of the Kasabonika Community Development Corporation, as well as Chief Eno Anderson’s birthday today.
KCDC was formed to establish and develop opportunity for Kasabonika First Nation.
The community has seen success in the creation and growth of their hotel, community restaurant, a small community owned store, as well as shareholder investment in the Landmark Inn in Thunder Bay and an ownership stake in Wasaya Airways.
Five of the community members who formed the original board of directors who formed KCDC were honoured today at a community celebration and feast.
Kasabonika Lake First Nation is located 448 kilometres northeast of Sioux Lookout, Ontario and along the Asheweig River. For much of the year, the only way into the community is by air. During the winter, there is access by winter road.
The community is looking to further boost economic opportunities. Chief Eno H. Anderson is looking toward several projects that will provide youth in the community with employment and positive futures.
On July 2nd, at a community feast which came as a part of the Canada Day weekend events, the community recognized the people who formed their economic development corporation. Today there were games for the youth and a time for community members to gather and enjoy the day.
One of the goals for Chief Eno H. Anderson is to make the community more self-supporting. To that end the KCDC is an important component of that success. So too is the vision of community leaders.
One of the focal points for the community is a growing dependence on aircraft. On Sunday there were several aircraft landing at the airstrip in Kasabonika. One a Wasaya cargo flight brought in lumber for the ongoing housing developments in the community. The other, a Kasper Airways flight, brought in supplies for the community store as well as passengers.
Kasabonika is looking toward the future, as climate change is impacting the access to the community in the winter. This past winter road season didn’t last long enough to bring in the needed supplies that it did only a decade earlier.
This change is fueling change in northern Aviation. Recently an Airbus C295W did a test flight into Kasabonika to demonstrate the large aircraft’s ability to fly into northern communities.
One of the big issues in Kasabonika as well as other northern communities is power generation. While there are several wind turbines in the community, the bulk of the electrical power is produced by diesel generators.
Moving forward while recognizing the importance of the past is key in Kasabonika. On July 2nd, that was the message, along with a lot of fun and smiles.