The Head Start Promised in 1870 Revived

February 15, 2019

The Head Start Promised in 1870 Revived


Winnipeg, MB–The Manitoba Metis Federation (MMF) is pleased to announce the launch of the Metis First Time Home Purchase Program ("Program") this spring. This Program gives Metis Citizens living in Manitoba an opportunity at homeownership. Pride of ownership means that the hardworking Métis Citizens who cannot afford to save a down-payment can now reclaim their rightful place in this province as land owners. 

A head start was included in the Manitoba Act, 1870, which promised: "a portion of such ungranted lands, to the extent of one million four hundred thousand acres." This promise was broken and left unfulfilled for generations.

"Today many of our hardworking Métis families, who descend from the would-be beneficiaries of the broken promise, can’t even afford the down payment on their home," said MMF President Chartrand. "Often times they pay more for rent than the cost of a mortgage, but they don’t have the ability to save for a down-payment. They work hard with little hope of home ownership."

The Program will officially roll out this spring under the management and administration of the Louis Riel Capital Corporation. The Program provides funding for down payments for Métis Citizens on their first home purchase to a maximum of or $15,000 plus closing costs up to $2,500.

The Program will assist approximately 400 Métis families this year. "This Program is only going to grow. This investment represents a small percentage of the Manitoba Métis Community’s total contribution to the provincial economy," said President Chartrand.

This Program means an estimated $80 million in mortgages and an additional $9 million added to the local economy through closing costs and maintenance: $7 million comes from the onetime costs of CMHC insurance, home inspections, land transfer taxes, and realtor commissions. An additional $2 million includes ongoing annual costs such as insurance premiums, annual property taxes, and maintenance of the home.

"The Métis were promised land. Instead, our ancestors were dispossessed of their land.  We are righting that wrong and giving our Citizens an opportunity at home ownership in the province that the Manitoba Métis created. Through the Metis First Time Home Purchase Program, the MMF has revived that head start for our Citizens. Home ownership is more than a purchase, it is a promise of security for today and for our future."


Believe in Yourself; Believe in Métis.

The Manitoba Metis Federation (MMF) is the official democratic and self-governing political representative for the Métis Nation’s Manitoba Métis Community. The Manitoba Métis are Canada’s Negotiating Partner in Confederation and the Founders of the Province of Manitoba.

For media information, please contact:

Barney Morin, Communications Coordinator
Manitoba Metis Federation
Office: (204) 586-8474 x277
Cell: 204 391-0717

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