Over the past few months, Dawson Civil has proudly contributed on projects that directly impact Indigenous groups.

In June 2021, a fire destroyed much of the Lytton area. Skuppah Band is located two kilometres south on the TransCanada Highway 1 and felt the effects of losing their nearest community.

“We love helping out on projects like these where we have the chance to contribute in a meaningful way to a community. They are great projects and we are fortunate enough to have a trusting relationships that allow us to work together to increase water to the community,” said Matt VandenBrink, Dawson Civil Project Manager.

Skuppah Band set up a food relief centre supported in part by the BC Food Bank. Operating out of the Band office, community members gathered for supplies, meals and to support each other. While the space is functional, it is less than ideal.

In the past year, Skuppah Band received a $2.1 million grant to build a Food Security Centre, a larger space for community members to gather for meals, prepare food, store food and a larger space for community events.

Previous working relationships brought Dawson Civil into the fold, as they helped with nearby Spuzzum First Nation and worked with Skuppah Band developing a rainwater well, grading for their roads and other additional works. On this new venture, Civil demoed and prepared the site where the Food Security Centre will be constructed, built an RV park for companies to use and stay while working on the Food Security Centre, installed a new water service and developed land for evacuee housing. Later in the project’s lifecycle, Civil will also do the grading and paving for the Food Security Centre parking lot.

Dawson is one of six partners contributing to this project that is targeting a grand opening in the Fall 2023.

“We envision that the Food Security Centre will have some space for our families to prepare food together,” Sherry McIntyre, Skuppah Band Councillor commented in the McElhanney video. “We recognize the need to become more self sufficient when providing food for our people. I think [the Food Security Centre] will be pretty popular.”

VandenBrink is quite pleased in the progress the project has been making so far.