NAN, POA Educational Foundation announce Project Beyshick participants

    THUNDER BAY, ON, Aug. 14 /CNW/ - Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Grand Chief
Stan Beardy, together with POA Educational Foundation Chairman Aditya Jha, is
pleased to announce today the eight NAN participants and mentor organizations
for Project Beyshick 2009 - a unique mentoring program that pairs NAN First
Nation entrepreneurs with mentors from the Toronto business community.
    "The skills these participants will develop by working one-on-one with
mentors in the Toronto business community will be invaluable when they return
home to set out on their own business ventures in their home First Nations,"
said Beardy.
    Developed by POA Educational Foundation and NAN in 2005, Project Beyshick
is a one-week job-shadowing program focused on entrepreneurship among First
Nation youth (ages 21-35) within NAN territory. Successful program candidates
participate in training programs from Dale Carnegie and Ryerson University
Business School to gain valuable practical business experience. Participants
gain hands on experience job-shadowing senior level business executives and
successful entrepreneurs in areas of their interest. Previous participants
have gained valuable work and life experiences, and made significant progress
towards their entrepreneurial goals.
    "Year after year we see encouraging results that Project Beyshick is
helping First Nation people develop their business and leadership capacity,"
said Jha. "We acknowledge that this is just a small step towards our wider
goal of helping First Nations become equal partners in the economic prosperity
of Canada and Canadian life, but this is a good start."
    This year's participants were recruited from four categories - students,
entrepreneurs, professionals and community leaders - and include:

    -   Archie Meekis, Deer Lake First Nation
    -   Keri Cheechoo, Long Lake 58
    -   Linda Trudeau, Moose Cree First Nation
    -   Patrick Cheechoo, Constance Lake First Nation
    -   Damian Bouchard, Aroland First Nation
    -   Roxann Shawaykeesic, Eabametoong First Nation
    -   Kyra Kaminawaish, North Caribou Lake First Nation
    -   Bernice Kakekagumick, North Caribou Lake First Nation

    Participating organizations for Project Beyshick 2009 include TVO, BMO
Financial Group, Laura Secord, SkyLink Group, National Post, Penguin Canada,
Poirier and Brightling (P&B) Marketing Inc., Prego Della Piazza and Karma
Candy Inc.
    Project Beyshick ends with a competition that awards $15,000 to the
participant who prepares the most feasible business or career plan.
    The project is organized with help from members of Students in Free
Enterprise (SIFE) Ryerson, Ted Rogers School of Management at Ryerson
University and the Dale Carnegie Business Group.

    POA Educational Foundation is a charitable foundation - founded and
funded by Canadian entrepreneur Aditya Jha - aiming to provide support for
educational and entrepreneurial initiatives in regions with specific
challenges and pressing needs. The foundation takes special interest in
nurturing prosperity and financial independence amongst Canadian First Nation
communities and individuals.

    Nishnawbe Aski Nation is a political territorial organization
representing 49 First Nation communities in James Bay Treaty 9 and Ontario
portions of Treaty 5 - an area covering two thirds of the province of Ontario.

    Note to media: Participants will be available for interviews throughout
the program.


                               PROJECT BEYSHICK

    -   A one-week career and mentoring/job-shadowing and educational program
        established in 2005 to promote entrepreneurship among First Nation
        youth (ages 21-35) within Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) territory.

    -   Candidates participate in workshops at some of Canada's leading
        business schools while gaining hands on job-shadowing experience with
        Toronto-based senior level business executives and successful

    -   Developed in response to unique needs and conditions of NAN's 49
        First Nation communities and nurtures prosperity and financial
        independence amongst First Nations communities and individuals by
        encouraging and mentoring entrepreneurial efforts.

    -   Provides an entrepreneurship award of $15,000 to the participant who
        presents the best business or career plan report at the end of the

    -   Available to NAN entrepreneurs, students, and community leaders
        seeking to sharpen entrepreneurial skills and/or pursue business

    -   Partners and participating mentor organizations include Nishnawbe
        Aski Nation (NAN), POA Educational Foundation, Nishnawbe Aski
        Development Fund (NADF), Ryerson University, Trent University and the
        Dale Carnegie Training.

    -   2008 participating organizations included HSBC Canada, Toronto
        Police, TV Ontario, BMO Bank of Montreal, Karma Candy Inc., Prego
        Della Piazza, Sears Canada, Globe & Mail, Royal Ontario Museum and
        the Heart and Stroke Foundation.

For further information:

For further information: Ashutosh Jha, Director of Project - POA
Educational Foundation, (416) 834-5274 or; Michael
Heintzman, Media Relations Officer - Nishnawbe Aski Nation, (807) 625-4906 or
(807) 621-2790 mobile

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