Economic Development Support Team (EDST) and the Aboriginal Labour Market Community Navigator Project Overview

Sponsor Organization: New Relationship Trust (NRT)


NRT has hosted both the EDST and Navigator projects since 2014-15. The presentation will provide an overview of project activities, successes, as well as recommendations and gaps in each of the respective areas.

The EDST consisting of Aboriginal business specialists, provides advisory and support services to participating First Nations, on “how to take the “next steps regarding complex business decisions. Support and advice are tailored to the specific needs of each participating community

The Navigators work alongside First Nations employment and training Coordinators, government representatives, industry, unions, training providers, as well as Aboriginal organizations and service providers. The role of the Navigators is to identify barriers and challenges, provide support, and build capacity among those working on employment and training initiatives at the community level.

Participants will Learn

Participants will be informed of EDST and Navigator projects since 2014-15


  • How our team of highly skilled Aboriginal business advisors can assist their communities within economic development
  • Learn how to apply for the EDST project
  • Preview the EDST on-line capacity building course “Maximizing Economic Opportunities”
  • Share results of the last 2.5 yrs of the EDST project


  • How they can access services from the 7 Navigators who operate throughout Northern BC and the Lower Mainland
  • The services offered by each of the Navigators
  • The project results and accomplishments for the last 3 years


Rochelle Saddleman
Navigator Coordinator
New Relationship Trust
P: 250-307-5291
Veronica Ghostkeeper Gerow
EDST Coordinator
New Relationship Trust
P: 604-314-3541

Presenter Biographies

Rochelle Saddleman is a member of the Okanagan First Nation, BC Interior. In 2011, Rochelle earned her Bachelor’s of Business Administration from the Okanagan College in Kelowna, BC, specializing in Business Management and Human Resources.

Rochelle’s primary goal is to continue working to improve the lifestyles of not only her own community, but all Aboriginal communities throughout Canada. Rochelle will continue to improve her extensive list of educational qualifications, thereby contributing to the continued growth of the New Relationship Trust.

Veronica Ghostkeeper Gerow, a member of Driftpile First Nation, AB. Born and raised in Prince George: she has worked in Aboriginal economic development for over 20 + years. First with PG Native Friendship Centre, then the Aboriginal Business Development Centre. She held positions on various boards: the provincial Native Economic Development Advisory, Community Futures of Fraser Fort George and PGNAETA.

Veronica has currently been utilizing her skills and expertise with New Relationship Trust in assisting BC First Nations to further their economic future.