National Satellite Initiative
In 2008, the First Nations Emergency Services Society of BC (FNESS), succeeded in a bid to manage the National Satellite Initiative Round 2 (NSIR2) to provide broadband internet connectivity to First Nation Communities to March 31, 2014. Together, with their satellite service provider, Norsat International Inc., and in collaboration with the First Nations' Technology Council (FNTC), the Program has provided high-speed internet via dedicated c-band satellite service to seventeen (17) remote BC First Nation communities.
FNESS’ mandate of assisting in sustaining safer and healthier First Nation communities in BC is fitting with the target outcomes of Canada’s Strategic Infrastructure Fund of;
- increased accessibility and improved quality of life, social development;
- increased innovative potential and economic development in Canada’s remote communities; and,
- benefits to education and health care by having increased bandwidth levels for internet connectivity.
Since its' inception, the NSI program has evolved to include enhancements such as the installation of video-conferencing equipment at ten (10) communities on the NSI network. Additional dedicated bandwidth provisioned for this service enables up to five (5) simultaneous sessions and when the video-conferencing equipment is not in use, this additional bandwidth is available to all commercial and residential users on the network.
The NSI program supports the training of two Community Technicians and one Champion for each community on the network, through a combination of on-site training and a two-day workshop, held at the Norsat International headquarters in Richmond, BC. This training will work toward building technical capacity within the nations who share the network, to enable independent management of their own systems beyond the NSI program.
served by the National Satellite Initiative Round 2