Welcoming the spirit of reconciliation and healing: the Biindigen Well-Being Centre receives investment from federal government

Press Release

From: Infrastructure Canada
Hamilton, Ontario, March 11, 2024 — A new, innovative, and Indigenous-led health centre is receiving an investment of $13 million from the federal government’s Green and Inclusive Community Buildings program. The facility will form part of the Biindigen Well-Being Centre, a new campus that will provide integrated health, family, social and housing services. “Biindigen” is an Anishinaabemowin word meaning “welcome” or “come in.”

Announced by Minister Filomena Tassi, Parliamentary Secretary Lisa Hepfner, Member of Parliament Chad Collins, and De dwa da dehs nye>s Aboriginal Health Centre Board Chair Bryanne Smart, the Biindigen Well-Being Centre will support improved health outcomes for both the Indigenous people living in the City of Hamilton and the non-Indigenous residents of the McQuesten and surrounding neighbourhoods.

The Biindigen Well-Being Centre will be a multi-use community facility that will feature a unique and forward-thinking Indigenous-led model of collaborative care and learning. Through partnerships with various local organizations, the centre will host Indigenous language learning, training for medical residents, and a teaching space. The centre will provide services to people of all ages.

De dwa da dehs nye>s Aboriginal Health Centre (DAHC) will operate and manage the new health facility within the Biindigen Well-Being Centre, focusing on providing holistic, preventative and primary health care. DAHC already plays an essential role in helping Indigenous people in Hamilton access culturally appropriate health services. Through this new facility and partnerships with local organizations, it will be able to do more and better.


“The Biindigen Well-Being Centre will support the De dwa da dehs nye>s Aboriginal Heath Centre as it continues to provide and expand its culturally appropriate health and social services to Indigenous people in Hamilton and surrounding communities. Our government is thrilled to work with local partners in Hamilton to create an extraordinary addition to our community that will benefit us all.”

The Honourable Filomena Tassi, Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario and Member of Parliament for Hamilton—Ancaster—Dundas, on behalf of the Honourable Sean Fraser, Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities

“The Biindigen Well-Being Centre will use a unique and innovative service model to better address the healthcare and cultural needs of Indigenous people in and around Hamilton. This type of integrated healthcare model is rooted in reconciliation and will better address the diverse needs of the community.”

Chad Collins, Member of Parliament for Hamilton East—Stoney Creek

“Addressing the health concerns of Indigenous communities is acritical aspect of the calls to action by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. The Indigenous-led Biindigen Well-Being Centre will meaningfully increase access to culturally relevant programs and services for Indigenous individuals and communities in Hamilton and beyond. I am pleased that the federal government is contributing to this important project.”

Lisa Hepfner, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Women and Gender Equality and Youth and Member of Parliament for Hamilton Mountain

“This federal investment marks an important step in support of Hamilton’s Biindigen Well-Being Centre. This Indigenous-led health and community services hub will provide Hamilton’s urban Indigenous community and the McQuesten neighbourhood with inclusive and equitable services rooted in Indigenous ways of knowing and being and aligning with Hamilton’s Urban Indigenous Strategy and commitment to reconciliation.”

Her Worship Andrea Horwath, Mayor of the City of Hamilton

“This funding will address significant and growing gaps in care by bringing services into the community and help to alleviate pressures on hospitals, while continuing to ensure high quality care in a culturally safe and respectful environment. We are extremely grateful to the federal government for this funding and commitment to culturally safe care.”

Bryanne Smart, Board Chair of the De dwa da dehs nye>s Aboriginal Health Centre

Quick facts

  • The federal government is investing $13 million in this project through the Green and Inclusive Community Buildings program (GICB).
  • The program is providing $1.5 billion over five years towards green and accessible retrofits, repairs or upgrades. It aims to improve the places Canadians work, learn, play, live and come together by cutting pollution, reducing costs, and supporting thousands of good jobs. Through green and other upgrades to existing public community buildings and new builds in underserved communities, the GICB program helps ensure community facilities are inclusive, accessible, and have a long service life, while also helping Canada move towards its net-zero objectives by 2050.
  • At least 10 percent of funding is allocated to projects serving First Nations, Inuit, and Métis communities, including Indigenous populations in urban centres.
  • The GICB program was created in support of Canada’s Strengthened Climate Plan: A Healthy Environment and a Healthy Economy. It is supporting the Plan’s first pillar through the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, the increase of energy efficiency, and helping develop higher resilience to climate change.
  • The application period for the Green and Inclusive Community Buildings Program is now closed.

Associated links


For more information (media only), please contact:

Micaal Ahmed
Communications Manager
Office of the Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities

Media Relations
Infrastructure Canada
Toll free: 1-877-250-7154
Email: media-medias@infc.gc.ca
Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn
Web: Infrastructure Canada

Daniel Heckbert
Communications Consultant
De dwa da dehs nye>s Aboriginal Health Centre
905-544-4320 ext. 265


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