Below-market rate rental housing for Métis families, a Métis child care centre, and office space for the North Island Métis Association (NIMA) is coming to Vancouver Island.

The Métis Nation British Columbia (MNBC) says it’s proud to announce the acquisition of land in Campbell River. It says the purchase, totalling $1,160,000, is part of MNBC’s goal of creating Métis centres across B.C.

“I’ve heard from many Métis families about the need to provide affordable housing on Vancouver Island,” said MNBC Acting President, Lissa Dawn Smith.

“I’m happy to see this vision of a network of Métis centres with housing, childcare, and office space for our communities beginning to take shape and come to fruition. This is long overdue.”

While the exact location has not yet been announced, and there’s no word on when construction will start, funding comes from the Employment and Social Development Canada Early Learning and Child Care Accord.

According to an Oct. 26 press release, “This child care facility housed with an affordable Métis family housing project will be designed to meet the needs of our families in Campbell River, a community that is currently lacking in urban Indigenous child care services.”

In fact, the facility will provide 61 spaces for holistic child care programming to support the needs of families, providing children with “consistent, quality child care from birth to age 12.”

MNBC partnered with NIMA to collaborate on the build of the housing and child care centre, and M’akola Development Services, an Indigenous-based professional development services organization, is leading the development of the project.

“We are excited to work with MNBC to begin the process of building affordable Métis housing. This is the next step for North Island Métis in supporting our community and strengthening our nation,” adds Tyler Massee, NIMA president. “NIMA is looking forward to working with all of our partners to provide a center for all NIMA activities and services in Campbell River.”