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First Nations Government Internship

Grants to British Columbia First Nation Governments to
Host Interns and Internship Programs for Canada Students

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Northern Development Initiative Trust

Deadline Date:



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Grants of up to $55,000 to British Columbia First Nation governments in eligible regions to host interns, and internships to Canada undergraduate and graduate students to work for a First Nation government. Funding is intended to give students valuable career experience while supporting capacity building and succession preparation for smaller, Indigenous communities. Funding is intended for Fist Nation governments in the Northern Development region. Priority will be given to qualified Indigenous post-secondary graduate applicants.

The internship program objectives are:

  • Accelerate operational learning and permanent career placement in First Nations government
  • Develop professional, long-term capacity in First Nations government administration
  • Make First Nations government a career of choice by financially supporting internship opportunities for post-secondary graduates
  • Allow for the flexibility of learning experiences where First Nations governments wish to jointly offer a placement for an intern

One internship program goal is to provide insight into the wide range of careers available within First Nations government. This includes opportunities in management and administration, corporate services, planning and development services, environmental services, finance, human resource, public works, external relations and membership engagement, health, education, and economic development. 

The host First Nations government and intern can expect support throughout the internship.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 183278

Number of Grants:

A maximum of four internship positions are available.

Estimated Size of Grant:

Host First Nations are eligible to receive a grant up to $55,000 under the internship program. The intern will receive a base salary of $45,000 for the 12-month placement. In addition to base salary, the First Nations government is required to pay statutory benefits which includes CPP, EI premiums and 4% vacation pay (or provide vacation days).

Interns who are relocating to a new community may be provided a housing allowance of between $5,000 - $10,000, dependent on local vacancy rates and rental costs.

Term of Contract:

The program is designed to provide 12 months of training for each intern. The program starts at the beginning of May and ends April 30th the following year.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

All First Nations bands, national governments and Tribal Councils located within the Northern Development Initiative Trust region are eligible to apply to host an intern and may apply either as a single applicant, or as a joint applicant with other First Nations or Tribal Councils.

It is expected that prospective interns will come from a variety of backgrounds and education, however priority will be given to qualified, Indigenous post-secondary graduate applicants.

To apply to the First Nations Government Internship program, intern applicants must meet the following criteria:
Academic: Undergraduate students are eligible if they have completed a bachelor’s degree within the previous two years of the proposed start date of the internship. Students graduating in May are eligible.

Preference will be given to Indigenous candidates and those in the following degree programs:
-First Nations Studies
-Northern Studies
-Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, Public Administration and Community Development, or Geography
-Bachelor of Planning
-Bachelor of Commerce

-Undergraduate students can use the internship to complete their co-op terms if they have completed all other requirements of their degree program prior to starting the internship.

-Graduate students are eligible if they are enrolled in, or have recently completed, a master’s degree program.

-Diploma and certificate students are eligible if they have completed a two-year diploma or public administration certificate/First Nations Public Administration Certificate by the proposed start date.

-Internship opportunities are not intended to be for positions covered by collective agreements. Host First Nations governments are responsible for undertaking consultation with their respective unions, if applicable, to clarify the objectives of this program.

Pre-Application Information:

- January 15: Deadline for interested First Nations to submit their application package
- February 29: Deadline for interested internship candidates to submit their intern application package
- Mid March: Northern Development, the Department of Indigenous Services Canada and host First Nations governments will interview and select internship candidates and complete contracts for employment
- May 1: Interns begin with a two-week orientation and training at Northern Development’s office in Prince George, followed by the remainder of the 12-month placement with their host first nations government

First Nations governments hosting an intern are required to provide a financial contribution toward the costs of the intern and to support the mentoring and coordination aspects of the program.

Host First Nations governments are expected to create and carry out an agreed upon work plan.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Host First Nations Governments interested in hosting an intern must submit a completed application form with all supplementary materials to

Questions may be directed to the email address above, or to:
Northern Development Initiative Trust
301-1268 Fifth Avenue
Prince George, BC V2L 3L2


Grant Coverage Areas:

For information on the Northern Developments Region, click here:

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

Canada: British Columbia

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