NowNS: First Nations offer economic hope – The Chronicle Herald

by ahnationtalk on January 19, 2016848 Views

January 18, 2016

Like many of us, Austin Christmas followed the smell of money to the Alberta oilpatch.

And like so many Nova Scotians, the journeyman welder quickly grew weary of the whole thing — the endless travel back and forth from his home in the Mi’kmaq First Nation community of Membertou, the heart-breaking goodbyes to his two children and all the other woeful aspects of the life of the long commute.

So after six years, he gave it up, even though it meant he had to find a new way to make a living.

Fortunately, he had a plan. Before getting his welder’s papers, he’d spent some time in the pipe trades, ensuring that he already qualified for the first stage in his apprenticeship as a plumber, which he completed in the months that followed at Nova Scotia Community College’s Sydney campus.

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