Rapidly deployable housing solution for remote communities, designed by occupants, built by occupants.
Yes, I fulfill all of the eligibility criteria.
Initiative's representative name
Joshua Reinhart, Jonique Gardien
Initiative's representative date of birth
Initiative’s representative gender
Which eligible market are you based in?
Where are you making a difference?
Canada, Ontario, Gull Bay
Website or social media url(s)
Links to our socials:
When was your organisation founded?
Reskilling and upskilling the workforce
Pilot (have done first proof of concept)
Start-Up (first few activities have happened)
Yearly Budget: How much capital do you need to accomplish your proposed project?
1. Founding story: Share a story about the "Aha!" moment that led the founder(s) to get started or the story of how you saw the potential for this to succeed
October 2019, found a team of 6 Motivated undergraduate students as guests of Kiashke Zaaging Anishnaabek (Gull Bay First Nation). We traveled from Ottawa to discuss the communities short term needs for housing. While there, our hosts expressed how impressed they were by the inclusive design approach we facilitated. They suggested that a consultation based approach, combined with innovative housing products, could be a foundation for a new model of housing in First Nations Communities across Canada. Further conversations identified several key opportunities related to skill building, employability, and long term housing solutions.
2. The problem: What problem surrounding employability or financial capability are you helping to solve?
The pending shortage of skilled trade workers in Canada creates a significant opportunity for the untapped potential of our first nations communities. Systemic barriers have traditionally prevented self-identified First Nations peoples from entering the trades. By providing training and future apprenticeship opportunities within the communities while delivering housing we eliminate barriers to both employment and training.
3. Your Solution: How are you planning to solve this problem? Share your specific approach.
By using a panelized housing solution we are able to provide a greater opportunity for anyone to equitably participate in transferable job skills where they may be self-employed and independent for their job work. Specifically, through each home build people will be trained in various work such as solar panel installments, SIP walls, roofs and floors, as well as building energy audits. All of these jobs are transferable to various other positions and can amplify the work being done with this housing solution that is needed all across Canada.
4. How are you innovating or using unique approaches to solving the problem?
The process to a new from of housing begins with the occupants themselves. We have established a relationship with a second community in need based on a strong referral from Gull Bay First Nation and recieved an expression of support from Chief and Council. The future occupants of the homes participate in the design process ensuring the dwelling is truely a home for them. WIth our reduced construction timelines and innovative assembly process members of the community begin construction of the home. This will be the first of several builds in the community. Each home only takes 4 weeks to construct, but the project will take a full year. This meansensuring the participants will be well on the way in there apprenticeships.
5. Employability: how is your organization or project teaching people to develop the skills that they need to survive in the future job market?
Our organization will be able to create a foundational learning progression for the skills of homebuilding with the panelized design being deployed. Anyone can learn the skills of assembling structurally insulated panels (SIPs) with guidance and practice, and then begin to expand and multiply the solvable action with other homes and participate in the construction. With the providence of new jobs where expansion and capacity building has the potential to expand from just one prototype build to several more and at various locations - participants will be allowed to make the capital that will contribute to a greater quality of life.
5a. Please describe which future-oriented skills your organization is focused on fostering and how you have measured / plan to measure progress
Transferable skills will be what our organization is focused on - in the work of solar panel installments, energy audits, and building the SIP homes for constructability are all transferable skills that give participants the opportunity to apply their skills in various activities that will continue to amplify the housing solution presented in the prototype. Our organizations plans to measure success by key performance indicators developed through the consultation process ensuring accountability to all internal and external stakeholders and cyclical program improvement and iteration.
7. Marketplace: Who else is addressing the same problem? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?
However, in this model for Habitat for Humanity, there is a financial burden that exists for someone who has a home located without a marketplace for revenue, as well as a lack of innovative procedures for the potential to invest in more customizable and energy efficient homes that provide benefits beyond reduced energy bills. With panelized home construction and transferable skill sets to gain from participants in the construction phases - people can apply these skills to other jobs and begin to benefit their communities’ and beyond.
8. Impact: How has your project made a difference so far?
The project has been able to make a difference in how engineering and design consultation is completed with the client. Incorporating ethical and inclusive design methods with iterative processes throughout the design stages has been irreplaceable with regards to how these homes can be implemented. By providing various forms of communication and project collaboration we were able to amplify the relationship with the client to be of utmost importance and consideration in the design process. During our consultation we were able to conduct a design charrette to optimize the engineering work and make sure the client could receive the best product we could provide as an organization contributing to the housing solution for Gull Bay First Nation.
9. Financial Sustainability Plan. Can you tell us about you plan to fund your project and how that plan will be sustainable in the short, medium, and long term?
In the short term a combination of grants, investors, and in-kind contributions will be used to refine the build process and alleviate risks based on to the client. In the medium to long term the organization will have an established revenue stream established around the housing solution as a marketable product to clients, with government programs being targeted for the development of the training and capacity building aspects of the organization
The team is currently comprised of 3 representatives from Gull Bay first Nation and 2 representatives from Carleton University. The Gull Bay team consists of the Energy Projects Coordinator, Councilor responsible for energy and economic development, and the councilor for housing. There combined years of experience and knowledge of the Gull Bay community is integral to the project. The Carleton University team brings technical skills, construction experience and training expertise to the project.
How did you hear about this challenge?