ʔaq̓am Community Enterprises Updates

ʔaq̓am Trading

Despite being hit with the economic impacts from Covid-19, ʔaq̓am Trading, has continued to perform strongly throughout the second half of this year.

The team and management have implemented strong sanitation and cleaning protocols, with the health and safety of their team and the community as first priority. They have seen a steady increase in visitors over the summer with the opening of St Eugene Golf and Resort.

Utility-Scale Solar Project

The ʔaq̓am Lands team has recommended a focus be placed on completing an updated project description, now that the legal survey for the utility-scale solar project site has been completed.

Once the updated project description is completed, they will be able to commence the next phase, that of drafting the lease documents. The team at Fortis will be tackling this work and submitting it to the Lands department. “The updated project description is an important next step to allow us to begin drafting the lease with the Band and then identifying the next priority lease requirements, which are land assessment, the archaeological assessment, further environmental and some geotechnical work,” CEO, for ʔaq̓am Community Enterprises Christopher McCurry.

The preparation of the work continues as they continue to advocate alongside Chief and Council for a Power Purchase Agreement with the Province and BC Hydro for our power project.

D&B Flagging & Traffic Control

D&B Flagging & Traffic Control welcome their newest member, Carlin Dennis, manager for D&B.

Carlin has spent the spring setting-up new controls and policies and has created a fully inclusive team atmosphere with staff. With a strong relationship focus with the client base, Carlin has been working hard on diversifying the service offerings that D&B provides.

May and June 2020 have brought record sales revenues for D&B and have been operating at full capacity for the last few months.

Agriculture Project – Opportunity Assessment

As part of the initial provincial grant that ACE received, the opportunity assessment report was completed and submitted by contracted agrologist Andrea Gunner. This report outlines the best opportunities for crops that can grow, how to grow them and who and how to sell.

The Province has given ACE the go-ahead to apply for step two of this agriculture program that provides an additional $10K for business and model planning based on the opportunity assessment report that was just received.


In the spirit of continued support to ʔaq̓am’s individual community entrepreneurs, ʔaq̓am Community Enterprises released the 2020 Business Development Grant Application on March 16th, 2020. Applications then closed on April 17th. This year again brought a good number of quality applications. This always makes for more challenging decision-making, which is a good problem to have considering the numbers of applications we are now seeing each year.

More and more ʔaq̓am community members are stepping forward with their business ideas, and taking action. We have been fortunate to observe varying levels of growth and development in several existing business owners and we are always excited to see what new ideas come forth.

ʔaq̓am Community Enterprises is pleased to announce the following 2020 Business Development Grant Recipients.

Ashley O’Neil – Ash FireWear

Ashley O’Neil is the founder of Ash FireWear. She has a background in firefighting, and through this experience, she realized that there was a need for work clothing and gear designed specifically for women. This led her to create several prototypes, which Ashley eventually made into high-quality demo versions with a company based in Vancouver. By the time she approached ACE, Ashley had already secured an order for her clothing, which demonstrated to us her vision and commitment to business success. ACE is looking forward to supporting Ashley now into production of her new clothing line.

Shelley Collinson – Genealogy

Shelley is looking to provide genealogy services for the Ktunaxa Nation, and other First Nations communities. Shelley has over 20 years experience working with families and genealogy records and has acquired a vast amount of knowledge during this time. This type of work is valuable to the Ktunaxa and many other First Nation communities.

Sheri Corrie – Arrowhead Engraving

Sheri started Arrowhead Engraving primarily as a company offering engraving on a large variety of items. Since her start, Sheri has expanded into the market of digital heat printing, and now has further plans to expand her market with hydro dipping. We are excited to see Sheri’s business get to the next level.

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