The Kuh-ke-nah Network of SMART First Nations is a practical expression of Indigenous community development. Six First Nations - connected by water in the summer and ice in the winter - have built an electronic road to Canada and the world. We are using this resource to stimulate and manage change in our communities.

The broadband network is both a strategy and an outcome. SMART services are being deployed to overcome barriers of distance and isolation, to improve community well-being, enhance learning opportunities, and support skills and knowledge acquisition. The Kuh-ke-nah Network is a touchstone for Keewaytinook Okimakanak First Nations and a promising means for building sustainable communities in the 21st Century.

Kuh-ke-nah is for and by everyone. It is a shared resource with deep roots in Deer Lake, Fort Severn, Keewaywin, McDowell Lake, North Spirit Lake and Poplar Hill. Since its inception as 'K-Net' almost seven years ago, the Kuh-ke-nah Network has grown from a regional bulletin board service to a centre of expertise in Indigenous informatics.

New Ways of Doing Business in First Nations - Being Smart

First Nations are using computers, digital cameras, scanners, printers, video conferencing and other tools to share information and communicate with the other people around the world. These information and communication technologies or ICTs, as they are called, are changing the way people work and do business across the region. They are doing things the "smart" way.

Other First Nations with the proper communication connections and tools across Nishnawbe Aski Nation are now sharing their stories, pictures and other information about the people, the families, the businesses, the land, the resources, the opportunities and the struggles. This information is helping people to better understand many of the opportunities and issues facing this region.

These new tools or ICTs are changing the way First Nations can receive and deliver services. With the proper connections and tools, anyone can teach a course, sell their artwork or crafts, meet with other people, tell stories, find out information just about anything, learn about other communities and people.

KO Telehealth: New Service Getting Ready to Improve Community Access to Healthcare Visit Website

Four years ago. That's when the Keewaytinook Okimakanak Chiefs saw for the first time what telehealth could do for their communities. They were at the Ottawa Heart Institute watching a videoconference between a Cardiologist and a patient in the Northwest Territories.

They listened to a heart beating in a clinic thousands of kilometres away and they saw first hand how timely access to telehealth improved personal and community well-being. That's when the telehealth vision was formed. Joe Meekis, chief of Keewaywin First Nation at the time, asked, "why is this equipment and service not in our health clinic today?" Read more...

KiHS - the new First Nations High School reaching across NAN Visit Website

If you stay in the north, how do you ever get to meet people from other places? You meet them online, of course.

Learning at home is what youth in KiHS classrooms have chosen to do. Rather than leaving their families and "going away" to school, they are staying at home to work. KiHS (the Keewaytinook Internet High School) and their community leaders are helping them have this choice.

The community KiHS classroom is a space identified by community leaders. It is "wired" for Internet access, and is staffed by a trained teacher and a community computer technician. One of the student's courses is taught by the onsite teacher, - although the lessons come to the students via the Internet. Other KiHS teachers in similar First Nation classrooms teach the other courses that a KiHS student takes. Read more...