New partnership will promote the cultural renewal of Peepeekisis Cree Nation through economic stimulation after recent land settlement claim
CALGARY, Alberta, Dec. 07, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Steel River Group Ltd., an Indigenous-owned diversified management, development and construction consortium, has announced a new partnership with Peepeekisis Cree Nation (the Nation), located in Southern Saskatchewan in the traditional territory of Treaty #4.
The partnership will concentrate its efforts on advancing the Nation’s long term economic interests inside the traditional territory of Treaty #4, while fostering the renewal of their culture, expanding their land-based education, and promoting the revitalization of their language.
Steel River Group will work collaboratively with Peepeekisis Cree Nation to generate sustainable benefits back to its Members through focused opportunity exploration in resource development, agriculture, construction, renewables, housing, and irrigation. The Nation will be synergized with Steel River Group’s Ecosystem companies, partners, and relationships, offering a wide scope of opportunities and vision for the future.
“Guided by strong leadership, Peepeekisis Cree Nation is well positioned to capitalize on a diversified portfolio of opportunities that will create generational sustainability for its members,” said Trent Fequet, founder and CEO of Steel River Group. “This partnership will reinforce and promote the preservation of cultural and traditional values for Peepeekisis Members and I am honoured to work collaboratively with the community to achieve those goals.”
The Nation, situated in the Qu’Appelle Valley, has a complex history dating back to 1896 when it was selected as the site of an extreme social experiment rolled out by the federal government. Referred to as the ‘File Hills Colony,’ this program encouraged those who graduated from residential schools to abandon their heritage and traditional way of life and permanently adopt a non-Indigenous homesteading farmer lifestyle. This experiment saw land taken from original Members of the Nation and given to graduates from other bands who were closely monitored to ensure they adhered to European cultural standards.
This forceful assimilation led to a loss of identity for both original Members of the Nation and new graduates. Nation Members were stripped of their traditional lands and were soon outnumbered by newcomers, while newcomers lost band membership on their home reserves and were not permitted to have contact with those who adhered to their traditional culture and way of life.
The Nation reached a settlement with the federal government this summer, ending the decades-long dispute over the ‘Fire Hills Colony’ program that had strained their relationship with government officials. Now that a settlement agreement has been reached, the Nation is looking forward to making significant community investments to help improve the lives of all of its Members.
“As a Nation we are independent, diverse and autonomous,” said Chief Francis Dieter. “Directed by our vision for a healthy and prosperous Nation, we are proud to say that the Steel River Ecosystem will be a definite asset for us as we work towards the development of our Nation.”
Steel River Group is honoured to welcome the Nation to its Ecosystem and looks forward to a collaborative relationship that will enhance the long-term vision of the Nation, while continuing to diversify its economic position.
About Steel River Group
Steel River Group is an Indigenous-owned diversified management, development, and construction consortium. The company’s mission is to partner with Indigenous communities on infrastructure projects to maximize Indigenous employment, education, ownership, and entrepreneurial experience. Steel River Group’s Governing Principles are deeply rooted in Indigenous values, beliefs and culture, grounded by a strong sense of community. Steel River’s operating approach is centered around the company’s inclusive Ecosystem Model, which brings Steel River Owned Companies, Indigenous Communities and Strategic Alliance Partners together over a shared vision to create opportunities for generation wealth.
For more information about Steel River Group, visit www.steelrivergroup.com
About Peepeekisis Cree Nation
The Peepeekisis Cree Nation is a signatory of Treaty #4 in 1874. Located in the traditional territory of the Treaty #4 that spans thousands of kilometers traversing the provinces of Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Alberta, the Peepeekisis Cree Nation is home to many distinct cultural groupings.
Brookline Public Relations