Among the recipients is Shxw’owhamel Land Sea Limited Partnership (SLLP) based in Hope, BC, which has been awarded Business Partnership of the Year.
Presented annually, the Indigenous Business Award program shares remarkable stories of Indigenous business excellence – while setting an inspiring example for the next generation of entrepreneurs. In addition to providing an authentic space to showcase successes and drive change, the awards help build stronger connections between Indigenous and non-Indigenous economies in the province. By recognizing outstanding people and businesses, the IBA gives voice to Indigenous entrepreneurship while modelling success for others to follow. Now in its 15th year, the program counts over 220 remarkable businesses among its alumni.
2023 Indigenous Business Awardees:
- Young Entrepreneur of the Year: The Ballantyne Project, Dwight Ballantyne – Maple Ridge
- Business of the Year – one-to-two person enterprise: Daxgedim Haanak Nation Building, Marcia Turner – Comox
- Business of the Year – three-to-ten person enterprise: Totem Design House, Erin Brillon – Courtenay
- Business of the Year – 11+ person enterprise: Jelly Academy, Darian Kovacs – Fort Langley
- Community-owned Business of the Year – one entity: Sugar Cane Archaeology, Whiteny Spearing – Williams Lake
- Community-owned Business of the Year – two or more entities: Tiičma Enterprises, Gary Wilson – Campbell River
- Business Partnership of the Year: Shxw’owhamel Land Sea Limited Partnership (SLLP) – Hope
- Award of Distinction for Lifetime Achievement: Teara Fraser – Richmond
The recipients will be recognized in a formal gala ceremony – open to the public – held on Wednesday, November 1 at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver. Tickets are $250 per person and can be purchased online HERE.
The Shxw’ōwhámél-Land Sea Limited Partnership (SLLP) specializes in constructing and operating diverse workforce accommodations within the Shxw’ōwhámél traditional territory in Hope, BC. Its focus extends beyond providing basic shelter, aiming to ensure the well-being and productivity of on-site workers through quality living conditions and appealing food options. SLLP places paramount importance on environmental stewardship, striving to create economic opportunities for its community while fostering a sustainable future.
Established in 2019, the partnership has grown steadily, offering increased job opportunities while navigating the challenges of the COVID pandemic with resiliency and adaptable practices. A significant achievement was the completion of the $20M worker’s accommodation complex, Sqémél Lá:lém, providing temporary workforce housing in the territory while showcasing a dedication to Indigenous employment and community engagement. Notable project initiatives have included five Pre-Employment Hospitality Work Skills Training programs held for Indigenous community members, the integration of Indigenous language and art into the lodge name, logo, signage, and documentation, and other cultural programming such as site and meal blessing ceremonies. The project has further maintained an average of 36% Indigenous employment throughout its lifetime.
SLLP’s dedication has extended to substantial community contributions, donating annually for local initiatives, and providing construction assistance to Shxw’ōwhámél First Nation. Forwardthinking and driven by Indigenous values, SLLP’s projects are designed to impact its community. As an example, the Sqémél Lá:lém complex is poised to become a lasting housing development after the Trans Mountain expansion project’s conclusion.