The Government of Canada has had a very important long-term relationship with CYFN beginning with the whole negotiations process in 1973 to work towards a modern day treaty. Over the 20 years of negotiating a Land Claims Settlement, the Council has worked with countless Ministers of Indian and Northern Affairs as well as federal negotiators. The Council continues to partner with the Federal Government by the very nature of the tripartite agreements, ensuring that there are joint initiatives and partnering on various levels.
An Important Federal program is The Gathering Strength Program, Canada's Aboriginal Action Plan. This program was developed in response to the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples with a long-term, broad-based policy approach designed to increase the quality of life of Aboriginal people and to promote self-sufficiency. The purpose and vision of Gathering Strength is as follows:
"A new partnership among Aboriginal people and other Canadians that reflects our mutual interdependence and enables us to work together to build a better future. Financially viable Aboriginal governments able to generate their own revenues and able to operate with secure, predictable government transfers. Aboriginal governments reflective of, and responsive to, their communities' needs and values. A quality of life for Aboriginal people like other Canadians."
CYFN has a Gathering Strength Coordinator who works within the Finance and Administration Department. Visit the Gathering Strength web site at http://www.ainc-inac.gc.ca/index-eng.asp
Another important Federal initiative is the First Nation Forestry Program (FNFP) which was introduced in April, 1996, to help improve economic conditions in status Indian communities by providing opportunities for First Nations to work with federal, provincial and territorial governments and private forest-related industries to participate in on- and off-reserve forest-based economic activities. The five-year program is designed to create jobs, encourage financially viable forestry operations and enhance First Nation forest management skills. The program is a partnership initiative between Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) and First Nations. Visit the FNFP web site