Design Points North created to assist Attawapiskat

TORONTO, Jan. 25, 2012 /CNW/ - Design Points North is pleased to announce their new organization made up of a diverse group of individuals, representing business, labour and the Chiefs of Ontario. It is a multi-faceted attempt to improve conditions in Attawapiskat through sustainable and community-oriented projects and initiatives. Attawapiskat Chief Theresa Spence has welcomed the Design Points North initiative into the community.

The northern First Nations community of Attawapiskat currently faces a housing and funding crisis. These issues are exacerbated by remoteness, which creates challenges for rapid relief and for constructing suitable housing that can withstand sub-arctic temperatures and conditions.

Tim Gilbert, Chair of the Design Exchange and principal partner of Gilbert's LLP, says "The plan is to begin by demonstrating the feasibility and desirability of custom solutions. We want to design and build these solutions by working with the people of Attawapiskat, with the ultimate goal of developing sustainable northern industries owned and operated by the First Nations"

Among the members of the Design Points North is architect Andy Thomson, who will lead an exploratory workshop and demonstration in design solutions for northern communities, in Attawapiskat in February.

Warren (Smokey) Thomas, President of the Ontario Public Service Employees Union (OPSEU), says Canadians must come together and support our First Nations. "We are looking to be part of a solution," says Thomas. "It is up to the community to decide what is right for them."

The group will be providing Attawapiskat with a new community art centre, a Mongolian Yurt, which will contain children's activities, art supplies and sewing machines.

Design Points North is sponsored by the Chiefs of Ontario, the Design Exchange, architect Andy Thomson, Groovy Yurts, OPSEU, Gilbert's LLP, The Harbord Room, Jam3, Linda Lundström Wörks and Bay Dermatology Centre.


SOURCE OPSEU

For further information:

Tim Gilbert, Gilbert's LLP 416-703-1100 or cell 416-727-5041


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