On Monday 3rd January 2022, two members of CDRO’s Incident Management Team were deployed to Bearskin Lake First Nation community to provide support to Chief Lefty Kamenawatamin and the Band Council. Bearskin FN is a fly-in community of roughly 400 people, located 600 kilometres north of Thunder Bay.
The community was hard hit with a COVID-19 outbreak, with over 50% of the members testing positive, the community declared a State of Emergency and went into lockdown. CDRO’s IMT members worked through the NGO Alliance and under the direction of Chief Kamenawatamin and Charles Fox, former Nishnawbe Aski Nation Grand Chief.
While activated, the CDRO IMT was able to gain comprehensive and integrated situational awareness through conference calls, including health-centric calls where the team was able to gather current status information and projections for the next 24-hours, as well as all-partner conference calls with the Provincial Emergency Operations Centre and various agencies across Ontario.
The IMT remained in the community for over a week and was able to provide a synopsis of their findings and recommendations to improve effectiveness and efficiency, to assist the Chief and the supporting agencies with response and recovery.
For the members of the IMT, it was an excellent experience and CDRO is honoured to have assisted Bearskin Lake FN residents and to work with such dedicated and caring agencies supporting the community.