Avalon has engaged with the governments, businesses, NGOs and the public in the communities around the Nechalacho Project.
How has Avalon engaged with local communities?
- Hosts public meetings
- Has face-to-face meetings with community leadership
- Attends and sponsors conferences, conventions and workshops
- Negotiates formalized agreements
- Produces CEO video company updates
- Uses social media
- Distributes news releases and industry bulletins
- Hosts site tours
In 2012, Avalon signed its first Accommodation Agreement with the Deninu K’ue First Nation. A similar Participation Agreement was signed with the Northwest Territory Métis Nation in February 2014. The Agreements include measures to mitigate environmental and cultural impacts that may result from the Project’s development. Implementation committees meet during periods of project activity to review Agreement commitments, work on joint-projects and share updates about their respective organizations.
Negotiations continue intermittently on various forms of partnership agreements with several other Aboriginal governments including the Lutsel K’e Dene First Nation, North Slave Métis Alliance, Yellowknives Dene First Nation, Tlicho Government and K’atl’odeeche First Nation. These negotiations have been conducted in a spirit of mutual respect and collaboration.
Avalon has played a role in encouraging positive educational outcomes in the schools nearest the Nechalacho Project, particularly in the area of science education. Education builds strong communities and educational outreach activities are a primary component of Avalon’s commitment to train and encourage the Northern and Aboriginal workforce.
Through classroom visits, Avalon has connected biologists and geologists with elementary school students. These classroom visits target Grade 4 students who study rocks, minerals and erosion as part of the science curriculum.
The Yellowknife Heritage Committee organized water-themed activities in conjunction with the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre’s Amazing Family Sundays in Yellowknife. Forty children learned about groundwater as they weaved their way through Avalon’s maze. The activity served to introduce children to the concept of groundwater. Residents of the NWT do not drink their groundwater, so the mining industry has a unique opportunity to educate people about this important environmental feature.
Avalon is committed to maximizing the inclusion of Northern and Aboriginal businesses in the Nechalacho Project. To accomplish this, Avalon is developing its policies and providing information about project opportunities to the Northern business community. Avalon participates in local Chambers of Commerce and industry associations, and meets with individual businesses to understand their capacity and suggest possibilities for new business development.