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Minister Anand announces new funding opportunity for Indigenous collaboration on defence matters

The Honourable Anita Anand, Minister of National Defence. Photo: Private Kareen Brochu-Harvey, Valcartier Imaging Section, Canadian Armed Forces



For our institutions to be progressive and inclusive, we need to widen our conversations, to ensure Indigenous voices are included and respected. Through the Indigenous Reconciliation Program, Indigenous partners will have the opportunity to actively participate in decision-making processes that directly impact their lands and communities, which will help build a stronger Canada.”

The Honourable Marc Miller, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations

As we make landmark investments to modernize the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), we are committed to ensuring that First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Peoples are able to provide input on defence issues, and that our institution respects and values the rights enshrined in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP).

To achieve these objectives, it is crucial that the Department of National Defence (DND) and CAF hear directly from Indigenous Peoples about the impacts that Defence projects and activities may have on them, and their communities. That is why we are taking real action to foster better collaboration with Indigenous partners.

As industry partners from around the world gather today at the CANSEC trade show, the Honourable Anita Anand, Minister of National Defence announced the launch of DND’s Indigenous Reconciliation Program (IRP), a program that funds opportunities for dialogue between Indigenous partners and National Defence.

Starting this year, and for the next four years, up to $1.5 million will be available annually, thanks to a $9.5 million investment made through Budget 2022. Indigenous people (First Nation, Inuit and Métis), Indigenous governments and organizations, including bands, tribal councils, Indigenous self-government entities, and local, regional and national representative organizations are all eligible for this funding.

Funding will be made available to eligible recipients in support of engagement, consultation, and information sharing projects and activities, on subjects such as:

  • CAF exercises, their impacts on Indigenous Peoples, and opportunities for Indigenous involvement and benefits;
  • infrastructure projects, including impacts on and opportunities for Indigenous communities, real property transactions;
  • policy research, including on subjects related to the security of Indigenous and Northern communities.

The program is now accepting written applications in English, French, and Indigenous languages, and verbal applications in English and French.

The program seeks to enable National Defence and the CAF to better understand Indigenous perspectives and ensure that Indigenous priorities are considered in our activities and projects.

Questions related to the program, submission materials, or eligibility can be directed to IRP-PRPA@forces.gc.ca.

 “As we invest to modernize the Canadian Armed Forces, we cannot leave anyone behind. Indigenous people are important to the defence of Canada, and the Indigenous Reconciliation Program that I announced today provides an important new funding opportunity to support better collaboration between Indigenous people and our institution. Reconciliation is at the core of our government’s agenda, and we will continue to make the necessary investments to collaborate meaningfully with First Nations, Inuit, and Métis. Our door is open, our minds are open, and together, we will continue to walk the path of meaningful reconciliation.”

The Honourable Anita Anand, Minister of National Defence