Adapting to Climate Change Impacts Workshop 

March 21 - 22, 2017
Richmond, BC

We would like to invite participation from your community in the upcoming Adapting to Climate Change Impacts Coastal Workshop co-facilitated by Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC), BC’s First Nations Health Authority (FNHA), and Naut’sa mawt Tribal Council. 

Climate change is having well-known impacts in the Arctic and Northern Regions, and is a growing concern here in British Columbia. Increased temperatures and rainfall, sea level rise and retreating glaciers are occurring, leading to increased risks of weather extremes, flooding, forest fires, and changes in food systems. These risks can have impacts on community infrastructure, lands and resources, and ultimately the health of communities.  Through planning, preparedness, and enhancing community resilience, we can reduce the health, social and economic costs of these events. 

Workshop Objectives

The purpose of this workshop is to bring together communities to:
-    learn about and discuss impacts from climate change;
-    learn about existing regional and provincial initiatives;
-    share stories of building resiliency and adapting to these changes;
-    understand climate change adaptation needs and priorities; and,
-    provide information on funding available under the INAC First Nation Adapt Program and the FNHA Climate Change and Health Adaptation              Program. 


This workshop will be interactive in nature and encourage participants to begin action planning both within their communities and across regions.

Who Should Attend

As climate change may impact various disciplines, this workshop will be relevant to: Administrators, Engineering, Public Works, Lands and Resource Managers, Health Directors/Managers, as well as Band Council Members. Up to two (2) representatives from your community are invited to attend, preferably one being from an infrastructure, emergency, or lands portfolio, and one from a health portfolio.

As climate change may impact various disciplines, this workshop will be relevant to: Administrators, Engineering, Public Works, Lands and Resource Managers, Health Directors/Managers, as well as Band Council Members. Up to two (2) representatives from your community are invited to attend, preferably one being from an infrastructure, emergency, or lands portfolio, and one from a health portfolio.

Richmond, BC

Registration and breakfast will start 8:00 a.m. on day 1 and at 7:30 a.m. on day 2 at


Sheraton Vancouver Airport Hotel
Room: Elmbridge
7551 Westminster Hwy
Vancouver, BC 
Phone: (604) 273-7878

Speakers & Presentations Day 1

Elder Debra Sparrow, Musqeum Nation

Anita Walker, Manager of the Climate Change Adaptation Program at Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada 

​Anita is the Manager of the First Nation Adapt program at Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada. She has worked on the climate change file for 15 years with the federal government, starting at Health Canada and moving to the Indigenous file in 2009. She also has experience on sustainable development issues and environmental management on-reserve. Anita is currently delivering a program to support First Nation communities in addressing their climate change needs related to impacts on infrastructure and emergency management, and is enjoying meeting with communities at regional workshops and learning more about the opportunities for building resilience.

Linda Pillsworth, Manager, FNHA Environmental Public Health Services

Linda Pillsworth is the Manager of Environmental Public Health Services, with 16 years of experience in the field of environmental public health. Her team of 38 Environmental Health Officers, managers, technicians, and program experts support the promotion of healthy environments, and the prevention of health risks through inspection, assessment, monitoring and capacity-building programs to First Nation communities. The last 10 years spent serving First Nations communities has progressively enriched her understanding of First Nations connections to land, reliance on traditional food systems, and the importance of both to the physical, mental, cultural, and spiritual health of individuals and communities. Through strong collaborations and partnerships with communities and regional, provincial, and federal agencies, her goal is to create opportunities to enhance public health and environment systems to better support the holistic well-being of communities.  Linda is supported by her husband and 2 lively boys, ages 9 and 4.

Andrew Bak, MBA, Territory Management Officer at Tsawwassen First Nation

Andrew supports Tsawwassen First Nation in implementing its treaty; facilitating community consultations and engagement activities, creating communications products, organizing and staging public events, and assisting with inter-agency referrals. Andrew has also represented the interests of Tsawwassen First Nation within decision-making processes such as provincial and federal environmental assessments. Previous assignments included land management and administration under the First Nations Land Management Act, natural resource management and cultural research.  Andrew`s creative side finds him creatively partaking in the music industry as a performer and producer.

Edward Nichol, M. Planning, Senior Researcher, Adaptation to Climate Change Team (ACCT), SFU

Edward is typically involved in research related to urban ecology, sustainable planning, and climate change mitigation and adaptation. He is the lead author of ACT's recently released report entitled Low Carbon Resilience: Transformational Climate Change Planning for Canada, which looks at the benefits of combining climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies to achieve co-benefits.

Jim Frehs, Manager, Climate Change and Health Office, Health Canada

Jim is the Senior Manager of the CCHAP Program which supports First Nations and Inuit communities in conducting climate change and health adaptation research in order to reduce vulnerabilities to climate change and build resilience through community actions. In 25 plus years with the federal government, Jim has focused in the area of environment, sustainable development and climate change with Health Canada, the Commissioner of the Environment and Sustainable Development, Parks Canada, Environment and Climate Change Canada and Natural Resources Canada. In his tenure with Health Canada he has overseen the development of Canada’s first ever health vulnerability assessment to climate change, implemented a heat resiliency program and has worked extensively with Canadian provinces and territories and First Nations to understand local and regional risks to health resulting from a changing climate.

Presentation file name:  FNHA Richmond Workshop, Mar 21, 2017

Dr. Tom Kosatsky, Medical Director, Environmental Health Services, BC Center for Disease Control - Health Impacts of Wildfire Smoke, Heat Stress, and Marine Biotoxins

Tom is Medical Director for the Environmental Health Services at the BCCDC, Scientific Director with the National Collaborating Centre for Environmental Health (NCCEH) and Clinical Professor at the University of British Columbia (UBC). Tom has particular expertise in the development of innovative environmental health surveillance tools and identifying quality evidence to support environmental public health activities across Canada. Prior to his March 2008 arrival in BC, Tom was a consultant in environmental health for the Montreal Public Health program and Associate Professor of Epidemiology at McGill University. Tom, a trained occupational physician, has also worked for the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and for the World Health Organization (WHO).

Presentation file name:  not available

Dawn Morrison, Director of the Working Group on Indigenous Food Sovereignty

Dawn is the Director of the Working Group on Indigenous Food Sovereignty and has consistently organized and held the space over the last 10 years for research projects, actions, discussions, and policy proposals relevant to Indigenous food sovereignty including: Wild Salmon Caravan, Gathering of Indigenous Food Trading and Sharing, and Decolonizing Research and Relationships, Food Secure Canada Indigenous Circle. Dawn has a background in horticulture, ethno botany, adult education, and restoration of natural systems, and is a published author. Dawn's critical analysis shines a light on the Cross Cultural Interface where Indigenous Food Sovereignty meets the movement to a more sustainable food system as a whole.

Steve Litke, Fraser Basin Council

Steve Litke has worked with the Fraser Basin Council since 1998. He is the Senior Manager responsible for the Council’s Watersheds and Water Resources Program, which includes Flood Hazard Management.  In this capacity, he has facilitated numerous inter-jurisdictional committees, managed technical projects including flood modelling and mapping and served on several advisory committees. Presently, Steve and the Fraser Basin Council are facilitating a collaborative initiative to develop a Lower Mainland Flood Management Strategy. The goal of this strategy is to reduce vulnerability and improve resiliency in relation to river and coastal flood hazards.

Brent Baron, P.Eng. Indigenous & Northern Affairs Canada

Brent has an extensive professional background in water resources engineering in a wide variety of urban and rural water resources projects including large municipal storm water management projects and habitat renewal projects. In collaboration with others, Brent has worked on a variety of engineering projects for a number of communities in the BC Region. Brent is currently coordinating the Structural Mitigation Program in BC region to reduce the potential impacts of significant events including the responsibility to coordinate the Coastal Vulnerability Assessment program.

DG Blair, M.Sc., Executive Director, Stewardship Centre for BC

As Executive Director of the Stewardship Centre for BC since 2010, DG provides leadership and facilitation of collaborative stewardship initiatives with our partners across BC. She is the SCBC’s Project Manager: coordinating and delivering stewardship projects and resources including the Green Shores, Stewardship Practices for Wildlife and Species at Risk; and Strengthening Stewardship projects. She is based on Bowen Island and loves using today’s technology to connect with people right across BC from her island office.

Speakers & Presentations Day 2

Michelle Staples and Summer Goulden,  Cowichan Climate Change Collaborative

Cameron and Eva Ann Hill, Teachers, Hartley Bay School, and Traditional Harvesters

Cameron and Eva Ann Hill have both lived their entire lives on the Northcoast in the heart of the Gitga’at territory in Hartley Bay.  They teach in Hartley Bay at the Hartley Bay School which ranges from grades K-12.  Hartley Bay is a very remote small community; only accessible by seaplane and boat.  Both Eva Ann and Cameron left Hartley Bay to continue their education at grade ten as at that time the school only went to grade ten and continued on to earn teaching degrees from Simon Fraser University. Cameron also achieved a Masters in Education at SFU.  They are avid Harvesters within the Gitga’at territory both in the marine and land environments and have adapted to change as many harvesters have not only in the Gitga’at territory but all over the world.  They would enjoy sharing their experiences and knowledge of their territory.

Dionne Sanderson, First Nation Health Authority: Local Environmental Observer (LEO)   

Dionne is a public health planner with the First Nation Health Authority team. She enjoys pushing her boundaries by trying new things and is ready to embrace the winter activities the Peace region has to offer this year! To stay healthy and active, Dionne enjoys working in her garden and taking long walks with her German Shepherd.

Nancy Makin

Since beginning her research career in the Nass Valley 15 years ago, Dr. Nancy Mackin has been undertaking community-based projects across BC and into the Yukon, Northwest Territories, and Nunavut. Her main interests are revitalization of ancestral architectural and landscape knowledge, and the application of this knowledge to community health and climate change adaptation. She is also a practicing architect and ethnoecologist, for which she has won numerous awards including building of the year and the 2015 AIBC Award for Community Service in Architecture. She has worked, or presented her work, worldwide, most recently in New Zealand, northern Norway, Lisbon, Copenhagen, Reykjavik, as well as across the Canadian northwest. Dr. Mackin is an adopted killerwhale in Kitselas and Gitwinksihlkw whose Nisga’a name, Hii Hlagum Hlocks, means Morning sun.


working with Governments, organizations, businesses and First Nations across Canada. 

Naut'sa mawt Tribal Council (NmTC) is a non-profit society established in 1983 that supports its member nations in realizing their efforts towards self-reliance, self-governance, connection to culture, and quality of life now and for future generations.


NmTC generates own-source revenues through its activities, and the activities of Naut'sa mawt Resources Group (NRG) by providing products and services to private and public sectors across Canada. Revenues enable NmTC to expand  resources available to member Nations and support Indigenous communities throughout Canada

Naut'sa mawt Tribal Council

Naut'sa mawt Resources Group


Delta Office:

330-6165 Highway 17A

Delta, BC V4K 5B8


Toll-free: 888-382-7711

Finance Office:

8017 Chemainus Rd

Chemainus, BC VOR 1K5