History

Innovation Seven (I7) was founded in 2013 and began as a firm specialized in the implementation of alternative service delivery (ASD) solutions for complex infrastructure and housing initiatives in First Nations.

Since 2013, I7 has grown both in size and capacity and has diversified areas of expertise. Currently, I7 is focused on helping both public and private organizations build longstanding, prosperous relationships with Indigenous communities and organizations. Additionally, I7 works to bridge the infrastructure, skills and capacity, and quality of life gaps that exist today through innovative implementation techniques.

I7 has worked closely with the Assembly of First Nations (AFN) to ensure that all First Nation men, women, and children have the same opportunity for quality housing and infrastructure as the rest of Canada’s citizens. I7 acted as lead policy advisor for the AFN’s National Housing and Infrastructure Forum, held in November 2016. I7 continues to work closely with the AFN to ensure First Nation community health and prosperity.

I7 consistently works with Indigenous communities, economic development corporations, companies, and Aboriginal Financial Institutions, in addition to private sector companies and government departments on the federal, provincial/territorial, and municipal levels on an array of projects.

 

Market Position:

I7 is uniquely positioned within the Canadian marketplace as one of the few Indigenous firms that are capable of taking a project from conception to beyond implementation. Our staff includes former high ranking First Nation officials, executives, infrastructure, and procurement experts that have both the nationwide network and experience necessary to guide a project to success. In addition, I7’s in-depth understanding of both the Federal Government’s operational process, including the National Project Management System, and the  Indigenous population’s cultural environment creates an unparalleled advantage.

I7 has vast experience in the ASD market due to President Dale Booth’s previous work experience as a fairness advisor and investment and business development advisor at P3 Canada. I7 is active in the First Nations market as well, with many upcoming projects based on improving housing and infrastructure in communities across Canada. We look to identify projects where we can develop community appropriate models.

I7 employees, and the firm, all hold the requisite security clearances. I7 is one of the few firms in Canada that has the skill set and experience mixed with the in-depth understanding of the Indigenous population’s environment and marketplace.

Indigenous Context:

I7 is a registered Aboriginal Business, located in Pikwakanagan, ON, is 100% First Nations owned and operated, and is compliant with the Procurement Strategy for Aboriginal Business (PSAB).

Dale Booth and Erika Booth are members of the Naotkamegwanning First Nation while Candace Bennett and Lisa Meness are members of the Algonquins of Pikwakanagan First Nation.

The challenges seem daunting with the issues of overcrowding, hidden homeless, addictions and dependencies, and mental health challenges, all of which have been witnessed first-hand by our team. Unless there are proper community facilities and infrastructure how can a community deal with these emergencies? Our travels and relationships have brought us closer that ever to the realities of the Indigenous population nationwide. Throughout the country we have found that there are many “community based” initiatives developed specifically for meeting the community need. Our resources are experienced and well placed to assist.

Current Atmosphere:

The Prime Minister of Canada has called upon each of his Ministers to deploy a new nation-to-nation approach when working with Canada’s Indigenous peoples in each of his Ministerial Letters. There has been a public recognition that there is a duty to consult with Indigenous communities and peoples if the Crown is contemplating a project that may negatively impact Indigenous communities and/or way of life.

Each project has unique complexities, as does each community and their respective culture. It is imperative that the relationships begin on the right foot towards building a longstanding partnership, and ultimately, achieving true consultation through engagement. I7’s team of Indigenous leaders and policy experts combined with their subject matter experts are here to help.

Housing and infrastructure are the backbone of a community, bringing greater importance to the following questions.

  • What is your community plan for expiring Section 95 operating agreements?
  • Are you aware of your responsibilities under the Ministerial Loan Guarantee?
  • Who is at default under any on these funding mechanisms? What is the result of default?
  • What is your current plan to reduce construction costs for new homes and minimize your existing maintenance budgets?
  • Did you know that your collection on defaults have a sunset for collection? What is your housing default procedure?

Innovation Seven is here to help.