Evolution of UAS and MVUAS Strategies

About the Urban Aboriginal Strategy (UAS)

The Urban Aboriginal Strategy (UAS) was developed in 1997, to help respond to the needs facing Aboriginal people living in key urban centres. Through the UAS, the Government of Canada seeks to partner with other governments, community organizations and Aboriginal people to support projects that respond to local priorities.

In 2003 and 2004, the UAS was allocated $50 million over a four-year period to build on existing partnerships while providing additional funding to community pilot projects in a small number of cities to learn what works well and what does not.

In 2007, Canada’s New Government decided to set priorities and make a long-term commitment on Aboriginal issues by investing $68.5 million over five years to help respond effectively to the needs of Aboriginal people living in key urban centres.

Learn more about the evolution of the federal Urban Aboriginal Strategy by clicking HERE or scrolling down this page. Find links to national success stories by clicking HERE.

Local initiatives in 12 cities across Canada

In 2003, pilot projects were undertaken in eight cities: Vancouver, Edmonton, Calgary, Saskatoon, Regina, Winnipeg, Thunder Bay and Toronto. In 2005, four additional cities were added: Lethbridge, Prince George, Prince Albert and Thompson.

Links to the twelve Urban Aboriginal Strategy cities can be found at the Indian and Northern Affairs website link http://www.ainc-inac.gc.ca/../ai/ofi/uas/cts/index-eng.asp

The evolution of the Metro Vancouver Urban Aboriginal Strategy (MVUAS)

The pilot phase for the UAS in the Vancouver region occurred between April 1, 2003 and March 31, 2007. During this time, the Greater Vancouver Urban Aboriginal Strategy (GVUAS) Steering Committee, composed of equal representation of government and urban Aboriginal community members, was guided by the committee’s annual strategic plan which focused on four key areas: Youth, Health, Homelessness and Housing, and Arts and Culture.

The GVUAS partnered on projects in these areas with all levels of government, as well as school boards, research centres and numerous non-profit organizations.

In response to the 2007 Federal Government’s announcement of the five-year, $68.5 million renewal of the UAS, from July to December 2007, the GVUAS Steering Committee conducted a stakeholder and community engagement process to garner feedback on future directions. To see a copy of the Report on the GVUAS Stakeholder Engagement Strategy, click HERE to go to the document in our resource section.

As a result, the community recommended that changes to the committee’s composition and structure were a fundamental step towards implementing a renewed strategy. Due to the feedback received from the community engagement process, a call for new representatives to fill seats on the steering committee was administered. Applications for community member positions on the new steering committee were assessed by an independent selection panel on April 15th, 2008.

The steering committee selection process resulted in a new Metro Vancouver Urban Aboriginal Strategy (MVUAS) Steering Committee, which convened for the first time on May 15th, 2008.

The new MVUAS Steering Committee will focus on improving the socio-economic condition of Metro Vancouver's Aboriginal community through: partnering with community organizations, the non-profit sector, the private sector, various levels of government and by strategically identifying initiatives related to the three UAS national priorities:

  1. Improving life skills;
  2. Promoting job training, skills and entrepreneurship; and,
  3. Supporting Aboriginal women, children and families.

The MVUAS Steering Committee identified three priority areas within those national priorities. In its 2008-2010 Strategic Plan, the MVUAS Steering Committee identified three major priority areas on which to focus resources to best serve its community. The three priority areas include include: (a) urban Aboriginal learning; (b) urban Aboriginal family/health/wellness; and (c) organizational capacity development.

Visit our MVUAS 2008-2010 Strategic Plan section - click HERE.