The Georgina Island Storytelling Project

Our stories celebrate our heritage and identity as Chippewa people. They preserve and teach our Indigenous ways of knowing and knowledge for the future generations of Georgina Island. In the tradition of oral history over generations, our youth - in their turn - will carry on this legacy to protect and share our proud history and who we are as the Chippewas of Georgina Island.

Something a bit new!  Here you will find the candidates campaign letters for the upcoming Band Election on Chippewas of Georgina Island.

The candidates were contacted and invited to send in a letter so it could be posted.  Below you will find the ones who responded.  Should you have any questions please direct them to the candidates, they will have their contact information on each submission.  All candidates were given a chance to submit a letter to explain their platform and any views or opinions expressed are from the candidates and not the First Nation.

For Chief

Donna Big Canoe for Chief

For Council

Alicia Trivett for Council

Benson Big Canoe for Council

Brittany Ellis for Council

David Migizance Big-Canoe for Council

Dylan Big Canoe for Council

John Charles for Council

Lauri Hoeg for Council

Shelley Charles for Council

William McCue for Council



Notice to GIFN members: The Aazhaawe (ferry) has shut down for the Season

The ice thickness will be measured and there will be  markers (tree lines) out for bikes, ATVs and smaller forms of transportation ASAP. Please use caution and check conditions before travelling on the ice, even in smaller forms of transportation. The markers do not guarantee ice safety.  We have fitted the First Nation’s side by side ATVs with a plexiglass barrier to ensure the safety of the passengers and the operator.  The side by side ATVs will be limited to 3 passengers per trip and only those in the same household bubble can travel together.  At this time the airboats (scoots) will be for emergency purposes only as there is no way to safely keep the operator separated from the passenger.   We continue to urge membership to only travel for essential needs.

Miigwetch (Thank you),

Chief and Council

December 15, 2020

Notice to Georgina Island Leaseholders

Georgina Island Entering Lockdown December 21, 2020 for Minimum 30 Days

Ferry boat restricted to GIFN members and GIFN staff only

As of Monday December 14, 2020, York Region has joined Toronto and Peel in the Grey – Lockdown Zone. This is due to continued high number of COVID cases, continued community spread and inability to trace the source of infections, a high proportion of positive tests, and increasing pressures on hospitals in the region. Although Health Canada approval of a COVID vaccine is a positive step, people must continue to implement social distancing and other virus prevention strategies to prevent spread of COVID-19.

Under the Grey Lockdown Zone, it is illegal to gather indoors with anyone you do not live with. You must limit contact to your household (the people you live with) and stay at least 2 metres apart from everyone else. Do not visit any other household or allow visitors in your home. Only go out for essential reasons, such as work, school, groceries, pharmacy, health care, helping vulnerable people, and outdoor exercise. People are asked to work remotely, where possible. Non-essential businesses must be closed, except for curb side pick-up and delivery.[1]

Chief and Council are announcing that Georgina Island will be in lockdown as of Monday, December 21st, 2020 and the ferry boat will be restricted to GIFN members and GIFN staff only until further notice.  Transportation staff will continue to inspect vehicles and walk-on passengers prior to loading onto the ferry. The Band Office is currently closed to the public, and will be closed to staff as of December 16, 2020.

As was previously communicated, Chief and Council would like to strongly discourage leaseholders from visiting or staying in their cottages on Georgina Island for the winter. Everyone is being asked to stay home, limit contact with others, and only go out for essential reasons.

Chief and Council will continue to monitor the situation together with our Emergency Task Force and will implement additional measures as required. The lockdown will be reviewed after 30 days (January 21).

Thank you for your cooperation and for helping to keep our community safe from the virus.


Chief Donna BigCanoe


Notice to Visitors

The Band Office is closed to the public

Please call 705-437-1337 for permission to enter the building

Face Masks are Required.

DO NOT enter if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms:



Difficulty breathing

Thank you for helping to keep our community safe!



Band Members and Essential Services Only Permitted on the Ferry

Click here For full article 


Waubageshig (Harvey Andrew McCue) of Georgina Island First Nation in Ontario was appointed as a member for his contributions to the health and well-being of Indigenous youth in Canada and for his leadership in education.

“I’m thrilled to the moon and it came as a real shock and surprise. I’m quite honoured,” he said.

Growing up in the 1950s and 1960s, he said he noticed there weren’t many programs in schools for Indigenous kids.

“There certainly wasn’t any academic content and that’s weighed on me quite heavily after I completed my education.”

He helped found and develop the Native Studies Department at Trent University in 1969 and taught there for 14 years.

Two years ago he and a small team created a 24-module curriculum on suicide prevention for First Nations youth, which has been brought into a number of First Nations school in Canada and the United States.

This year he created a kindergarten to Grade 12 history curriculum for the Long Lake 58 community, located 250 kilometres northeast of Thunder Bay, Ont.

“That curriculum will help the young people at Long Lake really strengthen their understanding of who they are, where their roots are, how their community came to be, and their connection to their Anishinaabe history and culture,” he said.

“These activities and projects have been very fulfilling for me and their objective is to work to increase the health of very young people and contribute to their further self knowledge.”


Photo submitted by :  Waubageshig was appointed to the Order of Canada after working in education for over 50 years. (Submitted by Waubageshig)

Notice to Visitors

The Band Office is closed to the public

Please call 705-437-1337 for permission to enter the building

Face Masks are Required.

DO NOT enter if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms:



Difficulty breathing

Thank you for helping to keep our community safe!

It is with our sincerest condolences Chief and Council say goodbye to Greg Buffett. For many years Greg served on Georgina Island as not only our Police Sergeant, but a welcomed member of the community. You would regularly see him volunteering for barbeques and other community events, most remembered will be the Easter festivities. Our hearts go out to the family off and on our reserve during this difficult time.

The family appreciates any donations to the Canadian Diabetes Association.


Obituary of  Gregory Michael Buffett





It’s that time of year again

Annual inspection

Friday, November 6, 2020  

Please bring your fire extinguisher to the Transportation Building at 110 Chief Joseph Snake Road, down by the docks by 8:00 a.m. Friday or Due to the short notice, if you would like leave your extinguisher outside your front door tomorrow Thursday November 5, 2020 by noon and someone will be by pick it up and will drop it off the next day.

This project involves implanting lake trout (up to 50 this fall) with internal acoustic transmitters
and releasing them back into the lake.

Your participation in this project is greatly appreciated. We hope that you are as interested as we are to learn more about the movement, habitat usage and behaviour of lake trout in Lake Simcoe. Happy angling!

Please click on the links for more information…

 Project Information

Lake Simcoe Acoustic Telemetry Tagging Project : Letter to Chief Donna Big Canoe and Council

Please click on link below for more information from Chief Donna Big Canoe, Chippewas of Georgina Island


Wintering on Georgina Island Strongly Discouraged During Pandemic