Matawa training and wellness centre

Wild flowers grow freely on the grounds of the former Dawson Court building on Algoma Street. The building has been purchased by Matawa First Nations Management.

Matawa First Nations Management has purchased the former Dawson Court long-term care facility with plans for a training and wellness centre.

“We have been examining the feasibility of purchasing this property for over a year and are pleased to have purchased it and be in the position to make use of unused city infrastructure in the Current River Ward to redevelop into something that will add value, not only for Matawa members but the neighbourhood and city of Thunder Bay itself,” said MFNM CEO David Paul Achneepineskum in a news release.

The purchase of the property was completed on June 12 and the organization is working with senior levels of government to obtain funding for capital renovations.

By purchasing the facility, Matawa estimates it saved about $8 million compared to if they constructed a brand new building.

The building will bring three of MFNM’s services under one roof: Kiikenomaga Kikenjigewen Employment and Training Services (KKETS), Matawa Health Co-operative and Awashishishewiigiihiwaywin — the group’s social services department.

The new space will allow an expansion of services and improvement to existing training, programming and clinical spaces and as well as off increased traditional healing and cultural spaces, improved partnerships opportunities and great access to park land and green space.

The new centre will also provide training classrooms and safe accommodations for adult students who come to the city for short-term training through KKETTS. There will also be transitional housing units for families at risk of homelessness and a health services clinic to improve access to primary care to Matawa members in the region.

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