TIMMINS — Following the Facebook page Hockey Indigenous or finding hockey indigenous.com on Google will bring you to what a Cree man has been focusing some of his time on: to uplift and help the youth and people in his community of Kashechewan First Nation.
Stephane Friday, 27, is the co-founder of Hockey Indigenous, the non-profit organization aiming to empower and promote Indigenous youth across Canada. He also works as a research assistant at the Omushkegowuk Nation Rebuilding Initiative department.
He has been actively involved in the community since his teenage years and he started working with them as a youth president at the Timmins Native Friendship Centre as a teenager.
He volunteered as a youth deputy chief for Kashechewan First Nation Youth Council, hosting various programs, gatherings and activities for youth. The coun-cil, comprised of seven members, started in July 2016, a month after Friday took part in the NAN Youth Delegation.
He was also a general manager of Kashechewan Minor Hockey and Kashechewan high school boys’ and girls’ teams. He is now a band councillor representative and also worked as a comprehensive community planning co-ordinator. Reflecting on his time on council, he says he didn’t realize how busy he was at the time.
In 2020, Friday incorporated Hockey Indigenous as a non-profit organization. Before that, he ran it as a social media blog. Seeing how much it’s grown and helped promote youth deems the side project a success.
His site provides a comprehensive anthology of sports updates that highlight the achievements of Indigenous youth in hockey.