Radio FNNBOA is a new take on housing.

“Home on the Rez”

Our first series is titled “Home on the Rez” (version Française)

Home on the Rez is a series of podcast episodes about housing in First Nations communities. Home on the Rez explores how some First Nations communities are successfully addressing their housing challenges. The episodes feature in-depth interviews on a range of subjects on First Nations housing.

The episodes are produced by First Nations University Students for the First Nations National Building Officers Association.

  • Each podcast is 15 minutes.

  • The podcasts are co-hosted by Jennifer Francis and Mick Favel. Jennifer and Mick are journalism students in the Indigenous Communication Arts (INCA) program at the First Nations University of Canada. Jennifer is from Kahkewistahaw First Nation and Mick is from Kawakatoose First Nation on Treaty Four Territory in Saskatchewan.


Summary of Episodes

Episode 1 - Our House, My Hockey Stick

Many people leave the rez to pursue their careers. Ted Nolan is a professional hockey player who grew up in Garden River First Nations. He describes growing up on the rez and what it was like living in different homes off reserve.

Interview: Mr. Ted Nolan, Former Professional Hockey Player and Philanthropist

Episode 2 – Community Makeovers

Two communities change their physical housing conditions.  Nunavummiut is a community located in the Nunavik region of northern Quebec.  The community introduced a unique program called “Pivallianiq.” The program focused on beautifying the living environments of the community. Yale First Nations is a community where there were no housing policies, tenants did not pay their rent, and there was no home maintenance. This episode explores how making some changes resulted in much better housing for community members.

Interview: Ms. Laura Lapointe, Pivallianiq Program Manager, Kuujjuaq Quebec
Interview: Ms. Crystal Sedore, Housing Manager, Yale First Nation

Episode 3 – Housing Authorities

Episode 3 explores how some First Nations communities are establishing housing authorities. Housing authorities are a housing management organization that may or may not be incorporated, that manages, administers or operates housing on behalf of owners.  The owners might include the Chief and Council of a First Nation. However, housing authorities operate at an arm’s length from Chief and Council.

Interview: Mr. Lou Moodie, Chairperson, Nisichawayasihk Housing Authority, Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation.

Episode 4 – Home Ownership

Many First Nations communities are exploring giving their members a chance to own their own home. This episode looks at what home ownership means and what some of the rewards and challenges associated with home ownership can be.  

Interview: Mr. Eddy Davis, Capital Projects, Public Works Manager, Skeetchestn Indian Band

Episode 5 – Building Better Homes

Stories about poor or dilapidated housing conditions on First Nations reserves are a recurring news feature. But that’s not the whole story. This episode focuses on how some communities have found ways to build better housing in their communities.

Interview: Mr. Keith Maracle, Independent Inspector and President of FNNBOA, Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory

Episode 6 – Recap

The hosts provide a recap of the 5 episodes and focus on the key points that were discussed by the interviewees on housing in First Nations communities.

  The Team:

  • Megan Currie from English River First Nation designed the “home on the rez” logo.

  • Annette Ermine from Cowesses First Nation was the Chase Producer.

  • Shannon Avison, Assistant Professor of INCA at First Nations University of Canada was the Writer, Editor and Producer.

  • David Lewis, Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory, Website Administrator

  • John Kiedrowski, project manager from FNNBOA was the Executive Producer


Funding for these podcasts was provided by Indigenous Services Canada. Special thanks to the FNNBOA Board (Keith Maracle, Vince Genereaux, Seetta Roccola, and Al Lafond) for their support and insights; Karine Tremblay for believing in the project; and to Karen Schwinghamer for her technical insights, logistics and encouragement.