| MEDIA RELEASE|
June 30, 2020
Winnipeg, MB – A recent proposal from the Manitoba Metis Federation (MMF) to run a community beautification project in Bunn’s Creek Centennial Park was denied by the City of Winnipeg.
“This partnership would be a win for all parties: the MMF would create jobs for our Metis Citizens and Winnipeg taxpayers would save money on the costs of maintaining the Bunn’s Creek Centennial Park as all funds would come from the MMF,” said David Chartrand, President of the MMF. “I hope Mayor Bowman and the City reconsider this opportunity to restore beauty to this important site.”
“The MMF is extremely disappointed by this decision,” continued President Chartrand. “We have a long track record of successful community beautification projects, and this proposed project would have been beneficial to the City of Winnipeg, residents of River East, and Citizens of the Metis Nation.”
This opportunity would have created new jobs for certified specialists and Metis summer students recruited by the MMF’s Metis Employment and Training (MET) department. The proposed project would have provided summer students an opportunity to gain valuable job experience while also cleaning up the park’s picnic area, parking lot, oak forest, wetlands, and river bottom forest, restoring its beauty and aesthetic appeal. Proper park maintenance helps reduce carbon emissions and stormwater runoff and enhance Manitoba’s biodiversity and urban air quality.
Bunn’s Creek Centennial Park is named after the first Indigenous doctor in the Red River Settlement, a Metis man named Dr. John Bunn. Bunn served as a doctor for the Hudson’s Bay Company for a number of years before settling in the Red River Settlement to open a private practice.
“This park has so much natural beauty, and we would all enjoy seeing the park brought back to life,” said President Chartrand. “It would be an honour for those having the opportunity to restore a park named after such a significant figure in the story of Red River and Metis history. We cannot forget his legacy.”
Creating jobs for Metis Youth has been a priority to the MMF and a key component of its H.O.P.E. Initiative (“Helping Our People’s Economy”). This year, the MMF’s It’s My Community Too program, an employment readiness program and urban beautification initiative established in 2009, partnered with the City of Selkirk and the RM of West St. Paul for similar tasks, employing nine Citizens.
Believe in Yourself; Believe in Metis.
The Manitoba Metis Federation (MMF) is the official democratic and self-governing political representative for the Metis Nation’s Manitoba Metis Community. The Manitoba Metis are Canada’s Negotiating Partner in Confederation and the Founders of the Province of Manitoba.
For media information, please contact:
Manitoba Metis Federation