Damon Johnston, newly appointed NUICC Co-Chair, holds meetings in Ottawa.

Damon Johnston, who is the President of the Aboriginal Council of Winnipeg, was appointed the new NUICC Co-Chair commencing April 4, 2023. Damon represented NUICC coalitions in Ottawa in late April for bilateral meetings and to attend an Imagine Canada gathering of major charities and federations from across Canada. Imagine Canada brought the representative bodies together to build a consensus on lobbying strategies for future federal budgets. 

Imagine Canada advocates for thousands of non-profits and charities, while NUICC brings together hundreds of urban Indigenous non-profits and charities. There are thousands of urban Indigenous non-profits in Canada, most struggling with annualized funding structures, insufficient funding, and often challenging working conditions.   The discussions at the gathering focused on promoting alliances and strategies for securing federal funding, as well as the unique UNDRIP rights of our communities in cities. 

Many relations were strengthened by being at the gathering and advocacy for our urban Indigenous communities. Side meetings were held with other urban Indigenous organisations, including the National Association of Friendship Centres. As NUICC seeks to secure funding we were able to meet with McConnell Foundation staff and with the CIRCLE on Philanthropy.  Additionally, a meeting was held with senior staff at the Department of Justice to discuss Canada’s significant failure to include the urban Indigenous community in their UNDRIP strategy. Overall a very successful three day trip for the NUICC team. 

Hear from Damon during his visit to Ottawa.