A new women and children’s shelter is being built on Black Lake Denesuline land with help of federal funding.

The six-room shelter will be called Sa kew chu sa’kew ko ‘ni kwa and will be run by the Athabasca Health Authority.

On Friday, the federal Liberals released $2.5 million in funding for the project.

“This is life changing and will pay dividends for years to come,” Athabasca Health Authority CEO Darryl Galusha says. “We are saving lives and we are changing lives.”

The project is expected to cost around $3 million.

The health authority’s deadline to finish the shelter is Mar. 31, 2019.

“Throughout the north, the need for women’s shelters has been an issue for years and continues to be an issue,” Desnethé—Missinippi—Churchill River NDP MP Georgina Jolibois says.

The shelter will serve women and children in Black Lake, Fond du Lac, Stony Rapids, Uranium City, and Camsell Portage.

(PHOTO: Black Lake women and children’s shelter construction site. Photo courtesy of Darryl Galusha.)