The First Nations - Municipal Community Economic Development Initiative (CEDI) is a joint initiative of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) and Cando that builds the capacity of First Nations and nearby municipal partners to develop joint community economic development (CED) plans and strategies.
CEDI First Nations and municipalities have identified benefits to joint CED plans and strategies, including:
- overall improved community-to-community relationships;
- a more attractive climate for investors and tourists;
- a stronger, united voice for engaging with businesses and federal and provincial governments;
- less duplication and more efficient use of limited resources;
- access to each partner’s unique human, physical and financial capacities, and alternative funding streams;
- more opportunities for local business development and job creation; and,
- coordinated planning efforts to improve land use, land management and environmental/resource protection.
From 2013-2016, CEDI worked with six partnerships of First Nations and municipalities across Canada to enhance their community-to-community relationships and collaboration on joint CED initiatives. Some embarked on economic diversification and tourism plans. Others sought to attract new investors to their region. Most found that in the end, their partnership had the power to implement the joint visions that articulated in the beginning of the process. More than anything, CEDI partners came to value that they are stronger together.
Building on this theme, CEDI developed Stronger Together, a step-by-step planning tool to guide relationship building, joint planning and action for community economic development. The Toolkit is intended for First Nations and municipal elected officials, economic developers, and other staff members as well as other stakeholders and residents to utilize for advancing partnerships towards developing effective joint strategies and plans. The Toolkit was the result of extensive research, CEDI partnership engagement, and peer review, and is available in both French and English online here.
In 2016, FCM and Cando were pleased to launch Phase 2 of the CEDI program, for First Nations and nearby municipal partners. Between 2016 and 2021, as many as 30 new communities will create joint economic development and land management partnerships based on their shared desire for a better future.
These new CEDI partners will benefit from the valuable lessons learned and shared successes of joint CEDI plans and strategies from Phase 1 CEDI partnerships, and from CEDI resources intended to support capacity building, including the Stronger Together Toolkit.
To learn more about CEDI and its participating communities, join the CEDI Community of Practice and access the CEDI Toolkit, visit the CEDI website today.
CEDI is funded by Indigenous & Northern Affairs Canada (INAC).
The CEDI Series will focus on the Stronger Together toolkit framework, going through the 4 stages, explaining the tools available, and sharing lessons learned in developing joint economic initiatives.
Muster your courage; take that lead of faith. The other orders of government aren’t actually the enemy – they can become your best allies. When you look at the downloading of services by the federal government to the provinces and from the provinces down to municipalities, we’ve got a lot more in common. If we can pool our resources and our knowledge, we can come up with some unique solutions that we wouldn’t have been able to come up with on our own. And that alone is well worth it. – Chief Roland Twinn, Sawridge First Nation, AB.
We are not dividing up a small pie into smaller pieces, but instead we are creating a bigger pie together. – Councillor Charles Fournier, City of Edmundston, NB
Trust is the biggest thing. If you don’t have that trust, you don’t have anything. Initially, we struggled through it because we were trying to keep score all the time and you can’t do that. Everything we do as an individual project is not going to benefit us all equally – it never will. And if we’re trying to do that, we’ll never get anything done. But collectively as a whole, all those projects, there’s a benefit for all of us. – Mayor Tyler Warman, Town of Slave Lake, AB
We are collectively the largest land owners in the Fraser Valley and our lands are well situated near critical infrastructure required for development and transport. Now more than ever in history is an opportune time for partnerships between First Nations and the business community to flourish. Business relationships built on honest, trust and respect will enrich our community and your organization. – Chief Clem Seymour, Seabird Island Band, BC
For More Information
Senior Program Officer for the Western Region, Cando
T: (778) 628 2180
CEDI Coordinator, Cando
T: (780) 990 0303
CEDI Program Manager, FCM
T: (613) 907 6320