The Sagkeeng First Nation is a Treaty-1, 3 and 5 First Nation in the Eastman Region of Manitoba, where two young and ambitious members of their community have undertaken a project to build a clean energy-powered greenhouse to provide urgently needed affordable food security for their community.

The project visionaries are Tikkan Morrisseau and Sara Fontaine, and their project is supported by the Indigenous Clean Energy’s ImaGENation Program, which is a capacity-building program that supports Indigenous youth-led clean energy projects through technical mentorship, cultural guidance, and project funding. 

Solar powered greenhouse in First nations community
Tikkan Morrisseau and Sara Fontaine in a geenhouse on the site that will also be part of their food production initiative.

The ICE Network provides a medium where communities undertaking energy-efficiency upgrades of homes and buildings, as well as establishing clean energy infrastructure, can share their experiences with others to help them navigate issues and avoid pitfalls.

As momentum builds and the reach of Indigenous Clean Energy touches on more and more essential topics in the age of climate change, food security is the next essential component. In the words of Sara and Tikkan, their hope is that this will bring significant value to their community, such as:

  • Engaging students at the local Sagkeeng Anicinabe High School by working this project into the curriculum.
  • Promoting healthier diets and improved health, such as reducing the incidents of diabetes.
  • Taking examples from our ancestors by growing, harvesting, and preserving foods.
  • Promoting physical activity and a connection to the land.
  • Encouraging local gardening, including plans to launch a farmers' market to distribute locally grown produce.
  • Inspiring others to undertake similar food production initiatives and small-scale clean energy projects.

The ImaGENation program, a partnership between ICE, Student Energy, and SevenGen, is what made this possible by providing 30k in financial support, and mentorship around capacity building within project planning and clean energy research.

A lot of materials have already been sponsored for this project, but there is still much needed. So, if any material manufacturers are reading along and would like to see your products featured in this project (including a shout-out from us at Ecohome for helping this excellent initiative), please drop a note in the comments section and we will connect you with the project organizers.  

The following are some supplies still on their wish list:

  • Solar panels/ batteries/ converter
  • Insulation
  • Pots & garden tools
  • Fencing
  • Energy efficient fans 
  • PEX piping for under foundation

Tikkan and Sara would like to extend a special miigwech to everyone at ICE, their mentor Mike Reynolds of Ecohome, and Sagkeeng Anicinabe High School for their support and encouragement. Sagkeeng will be filming the project as it progresses, which will be shared across Canada through the ICE Network and internationally here at the Ecohome Network. We look forward to updating this story along the way as it materializes!

Find more pages about how to build greenhouses and growing food at home in the following pages and in the Ecohome Green Building Guide. 

Find more about green home construction in the Ecohome Green Building Guide pages - also, learn more about the benefits of a free Ecohome Network Membership here.