The “StepUp” award assists Beausoleil First Nation Youth in their pursuit of post-secondary education, whether it be with an accredited University or College, a training or apprenticeship program, an internship, a program of part-time studies or other post-secondary educational program. The award helps to offset gaps in provincial and federal government funding, giving a larger number of BFN students the opportunity take the next steps towards their future through further education.

The “Step UP” Award is given to a Beausoleil First Nation student at the annual secondary school commencement held in August of each year. The amount of the award varies annually and is dependent upon available funds. Award recipients are selected by the Beausoleil First Nation Education Authority.

The Beausoleil First Nation have been living on Christian Island since 1856 and the islands have a rich history. In the early 1600s, seeking refuge from Iroquois war parties, as many as 8,000 people including 60 French settlers and 13 Jesuit missionaries fled to the island from local villages and the Jesuit mission of Ste. Marie Among the Huron near Midland. It was on Christian Island in 1649-50 that tragic events lead to the demise of the Huron Nation as an organized people, and the abandonment of a Jesuit mission known as Fort Ste. Marie II. Many people died from the harsh winters, and the Jesuits and the remaining Huron abandoned the island in June 1650. Christian Island is now home to about 700 residents year round and many others during the summer months. The Beausoleil First Nation occupies the southern tip of Georgian Bay on Christian, Beckwith and Hope Islands.

Donations to the “Step UP” fund are managed by the Huronia Community Foundation, a public foundation with charitable status that serves the people of Huronia. The Foundation builds permanently endowed charitable funds for the changing needs and opportunities of the community and provides grants to eligible charitable organizations in arts, culture, education, health, environment, sports & recreation and social service sectors.

To make a donation please go to the DONATIONS page on this site.