At FNPSS, we collaborate with our partners to ensure we are offering the highest quality in training and resources to First Nations, and minimizing duplication while maximizing resources. Through partnerships, we work collaboratively with various organizations and levels of government to help First Nation communities excel and build capacity. We also work with other First Nation institutions and organizations in BC and across Canada to facilitate coordinated support for capacity development in governance and governance administration.
FNPSS has many informal partners, but has formalized partnerships through agreements with the following organizations.
First Nations Organizations
On November 7, 2019, the FNPSS signed an unprecedented Protocol on Cooperation and Communication with nine other First Nations organizations. The Protocol will facilitate the coordination of the political and technical strength of the signatories and will support First Nations to drive fiscal discussions and develop capacity.
The signatories include:
- British Columbia Assembly of First Nations
- First Nations Summit
- Union of BC Indian Chiefs
- First Nations Financial Management Board
- First Nations Tax Commission
- First Nations Finance Authority
- Lands Advisory Board
- Aboriginal Financial Officers Association of BC
- First Nations Public Service Secretariat
- New Relationship Trust
Together these organizations will work to better support capacity development in governance and governance administration in First Nation communities in British Columbia.
British Columbia Federal Council (BCFC)
Strengthening Public Service Institutions Initiative
In 2018, the First Nations Leadership Council (FNLC) in BC endorsed a strategy jointly developed by the First Nations Public Service Secretariat (FNPSS) and the Indigenous Interests and Issues Committee (IIIC), a sub-committee of the BC Federal Council (BCFC): the Strengthening Public Service Institutions Initiative (the Initiative). The Initiative is based on the principle of ‘reciprocal learning’, with the dual objective of achieving increased experience and knowledge within First Nations administrations and improved Indigenous awareness and understanding within the federal public service.
Memorandum of Understanding
A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed June 4, 2019 between the First Nations Summit Society (FNS), the FNPSS, and the BCFC to formalize the Initiative. With the Chair of the BCFC as the primary signatory on behalf of the federal government, and an additional 17 federal departments and agencies signing annexes of support, the MOU represents an innovative, cross-government approach to collaboratively enhancing public service capacity development for BC First Nations communities and federal public servants.
The MOU states:
“The Government of Canada is committed to:
- achieving reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples through renewed, Nation-to-Nation, Government-to-Government, and Inuit-Crown relationships based on recognition of rights, respect, co-operation, and partnership as the foundation for transformative change;
- the implementation of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and the Calls to Action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission;
- strengthening its capacity to engage effectively with Indigenous Peoples; and
- increasing Indigenous perspectives within the Federal Public Service,
and will take a whole-of-government approach to implementing these commitments. The Government of Canada recognizes that First Nations’ Governments will require the capacity to fully engage in governance activities and decision-making.”
An evergreen work plan was co-developed for the Initiative, based on three pillars: (1) Training and Education; (2) Employment; and (3) Communication and Coordination.
Since 2018, the FNPSS and the IIIC have jointly collaborated on many successful initiatives in these three areas, including Reverse Town Halls, COVID at a Glance and webinars, and the Indigenous Intern Leadership Program. For more information, please contact FNPSS or the BC Federal Council.
ARMA Canada, Vancouver & Vancouver Island
The FNPSS and the First Nations Summit (FNS) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with ARMA Canada Region, ARMA Vancouver Chapter and ARMA Vancouver Island Chapter on April 25, 2019, committing to work together to identify learning needs and develop and implement strategies to strengthen and enhance the information governance capacity of First Nations in British Columbia, First Nations’ governing bodies and institutions.
ARMA Canada Region, and the local ARMA Chapters, are associations of Records and Information Management professionals in Canada under ARMA International. The members and committees of ARMA Canada, Vancouver and Vancouver Island have expertise in Records and Information Management (RIM) and associated methodologies.
Through the 2019 MOU, the parties agreed to the establishment of the Information Governance Advisory Committee (IGAC) to provide advisory expertise, and develop and implement work plans for mentorship, training and capacity building opportunities in records management and information governance.
IGAC is a committee of volunteers dedicated to supporting the FNPSS-ARMA MOU and records and information management capacity in BC First Nations. For more information on IGAC, or to volunteer on the committee, please contact the IGAC Chair, Jennifer Jansen at Jjansen@tsawwassenfirstnation.com.
Together, FNPSS, ARMA experts and IGAC have developed curriculum and delivered RIM Management Training Academies (MTA) for First Nation participants from across BC; hosted a RIM day pre-conference event prior to the FNPSS 2019 Breaking Barriers - Creating Connections conference; and hosted a train-the-trainer session to support experienced RIM experts, trainers and consultants in building their First Nation cultural competencies to better support First Nations in their work.
During the previous FNPSS iteration, prior to 2013, the FNPSS contracted ARMA experts to develop the Records and Information Management (RIM) Toolkit relevant for BC First Nations communities, hosted the RIM Symposium for BC First Nations, and several RIM bootcamps.
Institute of Public Administration of Canada (IPAC)
The Institute of Public Administration of Canada (IPAC) is an association of public servants, academics and others who believe in the importance of public service. It is a national membership-based non-profit organization that focuses on the practice of public sector administration and management across Canada.
IPAC and FNPSS, with the First Nations Summit (FNS), signed a renewed Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in June 2018, to formalize their partnership and commitment to undertake joint programming, research, and sharing and developing resource materials and publications to advance public service excellence in First Nation communities and institutions, and across all levels of government.
IPAC and FNPSS have developed a joint work plan identifying the activities determined to be of priority to First Nations and IPAC members. Partnership activities include: the Volunteer Indigenous Policy (VIP) Project (an initiative that aims to match experienced policy expert volunteers from IPAC with First Nations with policy project needs); webinars and conference panels; case studies; providing expert facilitators and speakers for training and conferences; and support for one-another’s events and outreach initiatives.
In addition to working with IPAC nationally, FNPSS has close working relationships with IPAC’s Vancouver and Victoria chapters. If you want to know more about IPAC’s networking, webinars, resources, the VIP project or other activities, please contact FNPSS.
Local Government Management Association of BC (LGMA)
The Local Government Management Association of BC (LGMA) is a non-profit association dedicated to providing professional development products and services to senior local government staff across BC.
The LGMA and the FNPSS have had a longstanding partnership to collaborate on training and professional development to strengthen and enhance the professional capacity of their respective members so that they may better serve their communities.
The organizations signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to work together to share resources, best practices and work collaboratively to support local government and First Nation government professionals. They also work together to foster improved relationships between BC local governments and First Nations.
BC First Nations Public Service Scholarship
A partnership initiative between FNPSS and the LGMA-BC, the BC First Nations Public Service Scholarship is open to Indigenous applicants who are working in a non-elected role in any BC First Nation government and are enrolled in an accredited post-secondary course or program.
We would like to congratulate the 2021 recipients of the BC First Nations Public Service Scholarship.
Darlene Smith is from the Ehattesaht First Nation and is pursuing a Bachelor of Public Administration from Thompson Rivers University.
Jordan Koe is from the Tsawout First Nation and is pursuing a Masters of Sustainability from the University of Saskatchewan.
BC Public Service Agency and Ministry of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation
FNPSS works with the BC Government to promote stronger relationships and improved services for BC First Nations. In the MOU signed by FNPSS, the BC Public Service Agency, and the BC Ministry of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation, the parties committed to working together to improve capacity building within both the BC First Nation Public Service and the BC Public Service. The parties also agreed to support the BC Public Service in building its own capacity to work effectively with First Nations and to increase its knowledge and understanding of First Nations. FNPSS is working with the BC Public Service Agency to prepare an annual work plan regarding capacity building opportunities, drawing on existing in-kind resources and programs.