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Nagweyaabiin Friendship Centre helps make hockey accessible to local youth – Anishinabek News

November 2, 2023

ESPANOLA – In June of 2022, the new Nagweyaabiin Friendship Centre (NFC) in Espanola was founded by Dalbert Kitchimokman, a member of Whitefish Island First Nation. At present, the Board of Directors includes: Bridget Faries, Vice President living in Sudbury and a Moose Cree First Nation member; Kaitlyn Jones, Treasurer from Sagamok Anishnawbek First Nation; Kimberly Holderny from Espanola is Secretary; and Tanner Faries is the Youth Representative.

Still in its developmental stages, the Centre has no dedicated office space but is meeting virtually as well as at members’ homes for meetings and planning of events. NFC has organized activities such as drum socials, potluck dinners, and, enriching verbal Indigenous teachings.

On Saturday, Oct. 21, in collaboration with the Indigenous Hockey Equipment Drive, the group held an event with the Espanola Minor Hockey Association in Espanola where they gave away hockey equipment to those who need it for their children and youth but cannot afford to buy it. According to Kitchimokman, they are planning on hosting the giveaway annually. Prior to gathering at the Espanola Recreation Complex for the Hockey Equipment Giveaway, the group hosted another equipment giveaway in Sudbury on the same day.

NFC has submitted grant applications to the Ontario Trillium Foundation’s Resilient Communities Fund, Community Investments Grants – Seed, Grow, Capital, Youth Opportunities Fund, and Community Building Fund.

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