Read the full 2019-2020 annual report report online at www.seabirdisland.ca.

Read the full 2019-2020 annual report report online at www.seabirdisland.ca.

Seabird Island looks back in 2019-20 report

Highlights include COVID response, new development, upgrades

Seabird Island recently released the annual report for 2019-2020. The following is a brief rundown of the highlights of Seabird Island’s 81-page report.

Chief Clem Seymour

Then-Chief Clem Seymour thanked the community for their continued hard work toward the growth and success of Seabird Island over the years.

“Even as we continue to prosper and gain recognition for our work in many areas, we know there is always more to do,” Chief Seymour wrote. He highlighted the forward momentum of the business park as clearing and construction began that year.

Chief Seymour’s focus that year was commitment to recognition and reconciliation by working with several governments.

“My highlight is …working with the governments to find out what is talked about and bring it back to our people so they can find out what it means to them,” he wrote. “To me, recognition and reconciliation starts on the ground with us, not them.”

“We are keepers of the land and community for our grandchildren, protecting the land ensures a future for them,” Chief Seymour concluded. “The work we do, we do for the benefit of Seabird Island; both now and in the future. Building unity is one of our strengths and this is work that we can all take part in.”

READ ALSO: Harrison Hot Springs releases 2019 report

Seabird College

Seabird Island Councillor Rod Peters said Seabird College was proud that nearly 80 certificates went to graduates in fall 2019.

“With certificates in hand, the graduates can proudly step into the world of work to put their newly acquired skills and knowledge to use,” Coun. Peters wrote. The graduates are prepared to enter a number of fields, including carpentry, construction, heavy mechanics, painting, professional cooking and commercial driving.

“Education is important to Seabird to consistently support our students,” Coun. Stacy McNeil wrote. “A higher education opens doors for for them for employment areas that will support their families in the long run.”

Human Resources

Seabird Island has approximately 330 employees as of this report, 124 of which are in health and social development. Education and early childhood education were the next most prolific employers of the community with 80 and 46 employees, respectively.

2019 ended with 297 employees, and the community’s employee base grew by more than 30 to 335 as of September 2020.

Finance

Financial Director Nigel Selvadurai reported increased revenue and number of programs in this annual report. Selvadurai attributed partial success to the transition to a 10-year grant funding agreement between Seabird Island and Indigenous Service Canada.

READ ALSO: District of Kent highlights accomplishments in 2019 report

Revenue topped $40 million, continuing a steady climb seen since 2016. A bulk of the revenue came from the Health and Social Department, comprising about 33 per cent of the year’s revenue at $14 million. Education and band entities each brought in about $9.5 million, or around 22 per cent. The expense statistics almost mirror the revenue with Health and Social being responsible for $13.6 million in expenses (35 per cent), education at nearly $9.5 million (25 per cent) and band entities at $8.5 million (about 22 per cent).

Records Management/IT

Records management took their “Go Green” initiative seriously, recycling 8 tons of paper (16,000 pounds or 7,257 kilograms). This equates to roughly 136 trees and 73,000 kilowatts of energy saved.

In information technology, Seabird Island staff has upgraded servers and other important equipment. Thanks to their completion of the Last-Mile project, 95 per cent of Seabird Island hopes are connected.

Communications

Communications put their emergency preparedness and response skills to the test during the 2018-2019 year. The harsh winter knocked out power and froze and burst pipes at the Band Office.

“The Emergency Operations Center (EOC) worked diligently and quickly to minimize disruption to our staff and services to Seabird Island,” the communications team wrote.

When the pandemic set in, the communications team played and continues to play a critical role in distributing information online and door-to-door.

Fire Department

The Seabird Island Fire Department attended 36 calls between April 2019 to the end of March 2020, 35 of which were on Seabird Island lands.

Events

The 2019 Seabird Island Festival – then in its 50th year – saw an attendance of more than 5,000 people with 65 soccer teams, six baseball teams, 15 canoe clubs and 16 vendors. In September 61 people attended and participated in the Indigenous Sport, Physical Activity and Recreation Council canoe/kayak provincial championships. The athletes were competing for a spot in the Indigenous Games, which was postponed due to the pandemic.

The Pandemic, Leadership and Community

Selvadurai said the transition to working remotely due to the pandemic was difficult at first, but day-to-day operations, at least as far as finances go, ultimately ran smoothly with no major interruptions.

Coun. Alexis Grace briefly touched on COVID-19, expressing her gratitude to Chief Seymour for his teachings and the community as a whole for their coming together – metaphorically speaking – during the pandemic.

“We have witnessed countless acts of selflessness from community champions supporting one another to maintain this collective identity,” Coun. Grace wrote. “Staff and teams continue to work tirelessly, connecting with Community, reaching out to Members that are away from home, ensuring that people are safe.”

”We came from great strength and we will move forward in all areas with the same strength our ancestors intended for our future,” she continued Thank you to everyone for all the work accomplished over the past year and thank you to every individual that has shared with me their story or their truth. I value your trust, your voice, your guidance and your confidence more than I can express.”

Read the full report online at www.seabirdisland.ca.


Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email:
news@ahobserver.com


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

agassizFirst NationsHarrison Hot Springshope

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Fraser Health issued an overdose alert on Jan. 21, 2021 after an increase in overdoses over the past week in Chilliwack associated with a “greeny-blue/turquoise down substance.” (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Fraser Health issues drug overdose alert in Chilliwack

Alert comes after increase in overdoses associated with ‘greeny-blue/turquoise down substance’

Chilliwack Chiefs forward Sasha Teleguine, seen here with Thayer Academy, is on the NHL’s Central Scouting Bureau updated watch list. (Twitter photo)
Chilliwack Chief Sasha Teleguine holds spot on Central Scouting Bureau’s watch list

Teleguine and Prince George forward Finlay Williams are viewed as potential late round NHL picks

ds
Mission potbellied-pig sanctuary mourns death of beloved old hog named Roscoe

14-year-old, 800-pound pig was ‘quite a character,’ said owner Janice Gillett

Vancouver/Fraser Valley CoSA holds a webinar on Jan. 26 titled Staying Safe Online.
‘Staying Safe Online’ is subject of Fraser Valley webinar

Session on Tuesday, Jan. 26 is hosted by non-profit Circles of Support and Accountability

A door is boarded up following a fire at Pho Xuan restaurant on Yale Road on Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
UPDATE: Early morning fire at vacant Chilliwack restaurant was deliberately set

Fire erupted north of the Yale Road overpass at Pho Xuan, which was permanently closed

Toronto Public Health nurse Lalaine Agarin sets up for mass vaccination clinic in Toronto, Jan. 17, 2021. B.C. is set to to begin its large-scale immunization program for the general public starting in April. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
B.C.’s COVID-19 mass vaccinations expected to start in April

Clinics to immunize four million people by September

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam speaks during a daily briefing in Ottawa. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld)
31 cases of COVID-19 variants detected in Canada: Health officials

Dr. Theresa Tam made announces 13 more variant COVID-19 cases in Canada

Daily COVID-19 cases reported to each B.C. health region, to Jan. 20, 2021. Island Health in blue, Northern Health green, Interior Health orange, Vancouver Coastal in red and Fraser Health in purple. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infection rate stays stable with 508 cases Friday

Vaccine delivered to more than 110,000 high-risk people

The District of Saanich’s communications team decided to take part in a viral trend on Thursday and photoshopped U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders into a staff meeting photo. (District of Saanich/Twitter)
Bernie Sanders makes guest appearance municipal staff meeting in B.C.

Vancouver Island firefighters jump on viral trend of photoshopped U.S. senator

School District 57 headquarters in Prince George. (Mark Nielsen, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter)
Prince George school district settles with sexual abuse victim

Terms were part of an out-of-court settlement reached with Michael Bruneau, nearly four years after he filed a lawsuit

Surrey provincial court. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
New COVID-19 protocols set for provincial courthouses

The new rules were issued on Jan. 21, and took effect immediately

Police in Vancouver looking for male suspect who allegedly spat and attacked a store manager for not wearing a mask, at 7-Eleven near Alma Street and West 10th Avenue just before noon on Dec. 17, 2020. (Vancouver police handout)
VIDEO: Man spits on 7-Eleven manager over mask rule, sparking Vancouver police probe

‘Unfortunately, the store manager sustained a cut to his head during the assault’

The Vancouver-based SAR team successfully rescued two lost snowshoers off of the west side of Tim Jones Peak in the early morning of Monday, Jan. 19. (North Shore Rescue photo)
B.C.’s busiest SAR team raises alarm after 2021 begins with fatality, multiple rescues

‘People beyond ski resort areas of Seymour, Grouse, and Cypress go without cell reception,’ SAR warns

Post-COVID-19 recovery clinic in Surrey, at Jim Pattison Outpatient Care and Surgery Centre. (Photo: Fraser Health)
Surrey to host 1 of 3 post-COVID recovery clinics in Lower Mainland

The Jim Pattison Outpatient Care and Surgery Centre is located at 9750 140th Street

Most Read