The Six Nations Community Plan has evolved over the past two decades from a capital plan and infrastructure needs approach in 1996 to the present-day comprehensive Community Plan. The comprehensive approach took community planning beyond the scope of infrastructural needs to a more holistic and balanced approach to community planning that aimed to engage and empower community voices. After the needs assessment conducted in 2007, the first comprehensive Community Plan was endorsed by the Six Nations Elected Council (SNEC) in 2010 to be used by the departments under SNEC and other organizations that wished to participate. The 2010 Community Plan highlighted the concerns, opportunities and actions under seven priorities: Mother Earth, Community, Arts & Culture, Built Environment, Employment and Education, Economic Development and Wellbeing. The intention was to identify opportunities for collaboration and communicate the direction of the community and its organizations.

View the 2010 Community Plan
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Although the 2010 Community Plan was effective to communicate potential action of all departments, there was limited commitment from the broader community to make collaborative use of it. Currently, the Six Nations Community Plan is part of the Six Nations of the Grand River Development Corporation (SNGRDC) portfolio. SNGRDC maintains that this plan is owned by the community and will continue to encourage a responsible Community Planning process within Six Nations.

In 2018-19, the Community Plan underwent an update process that was intended to broaden the scope beyond departments and organizations to all community members, organizations and leadership bodies, resulting in this document. Phase 1 of this process was to create an interim “Progress Report” to follow up on the first Community Plan before conducting a comprehensive update.

View the 2018 Progress Update

After completing the progress update the Community Plan Team reached out to the community to gather insight for the comprehensive update. The following engagement methods helped the Team hear a diversity of voices:


The Community Plan booth was set up in high-traffic community locations or events. Here, the Community Plan Team could connect with a high number of community members and offer the chance for quick engagement. Community members could answer open-ended sticky note questions or hang a leaf on the ‘lateral kindness tree’.

A portable Speakers’ Corner provided a safe and quiet space where community members could record short testimonials to voice their vision for the future, their concerns of today and the solutions they wanted to see.
14 focus groups were hosted over 2018-19 – two for every priority, offering a lunch session and a dinner session to provide flexibility for people’s schedules. Here the conversation would focus around the details of one of the seven priorities, while also exploring how that priority interconnects with others.
Three open houses were held in 2018-19 to share what the Community Plan Team was hearing as the engagement happened. The goal was to create two-way dialogue, so that the Community Plan Team could hear feedback on questions such as “Are we hearing you right?” or “Are we capturing this concern accurately?”
Families and social groups invited the community plan team into their homes to share a meal, feedback on vision, concerns and opportunities. These provided safe and familiar settings, where members could share differences of opinion with the comfort of knowing that they could be debated but respected. Organizations or businesses invited the community plan team to their workplace. Here, opinions from employees blended their perspectives as community members and as knowledge holders in their particular field. Conversation centered around how the organization connected to the different priorities of the community plan.
The Community Plan team partnered with several agencies through the year to support their events and integrate engagement opportunities.


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People engaged in facilitated discussions including family dinners, organization sessions, youth events and priority focus groups
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People engaged at 34 booths throughout the community
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People came through our Open Houses to provide comments on drafts

For more detailed reporting on the Community Engagement that informed the 2019 Community Plan, please read the Engagement Report.

View the 2019 Engagement Report


The Community Plan Team spent 6-7 weeks focusing on each of the 7 priorities from the original community plan. After each period the Community Plan Team wrote up a “This Is What We Heard” report, so community members had an opportunity to provide feedback on the engagement as it was happening.


Mother Earth

In this priority we discussed land, the environment, and how we can enhance our relationship to mother earth.



In this priority, we discussed safety, governance, engagement and communication, and public facilities.


Arts & Culture

In this priority we discussed ways the Haudenosaunee Six Nations identity can be protected, enhanced and sustained for future generations through culture, language and arts.



In this priority we heard well-being can be enhanced in the community, and the interconnected ways that other community plan priorities contribute to the ultimate goal of well-being.


Employment & Education

In this priority, we heard about the vision that the community has for a holistic approach to education and for strong and diverse employment opportunities in the future.


Economic Development

In this priority, we heard about the community vision for a strong local economy and responsible business so we can sustain ourselves and support a flourishing community.


Built Environment

In this priority, we heard about the role that the physical, human-made parts of a community (such as housing, infrastructure, transportation and public facilities) play in sustaining community well-being.

Note that Governance was not identified as a distinct priority in the original plan and so did not have a separate period of focus. Governance emerged as a fundamental topic in most discussions, which compelled the Community Plan Team to highlight it as a distinct eighth priority for the updated Community Plan.