Labrador Friendship Centre
Enriching Aboriginal Life
in Labrador
Labrador Friendship Centre
History
The Labrador Friendship Centre, or the idea of a Labrador Friendship Centre originated in 1973 from work being done by the Company of Young Canadians and the Happy Valley Inuit Association. Workers from both these groups were involved in matters related to the concerns of Aboriginal people who had moved from a rural area on the Coast of Labrador to a more urban setting in Happy Valley - Goose Bay where the population was mainly of Euro-Canadian origin.

Aboriginal people in Happy Valley - Goose Bay were experiencing many problems in making the adjustment to an environment which was totally different from that which they were accustomed. Areas of concern were verbal communication (many of the Aboriginal people could not understand English), lack of adequate housing, employment, transportation, alcohol and legal concerns.

A group of concerned citizens who recognized the problems decided that there should be an organization to assist Aboriginal people to cope with these concerns. From information received from the Company of Young Canadians, the group became aware of organizations called Native Friendship Centres. The mandate of these organizations was to assist Aboriginal people who moved from their homes to urban areas. Funding was provided by the Federal Department of Secretary of State, Native Citizens Directorate through a program called The Migrating Native People's Program. Following a series of meetings with the Department of Secretary of State and Aboriginal groups in Labrador, core funding was provided in October, 1974. The first Annual General Assembly was held in October 1975 and Mr. Robert Lyall became its first elected president.

In 1992, the Labrador Friendship Centre relocated to 49 Grenfell Street, Happy Valley-Goose Bay. The new Centre has been named in honour of Robert C. Lyall the first President and founding member of the Labrador Friendship Centre.

The new facility has a number of office spaces, a Hostel, and a Cafeteria. The Centre offers a Board Room, a Multi-Purpose Room and office space for rent. This space is available to all organizations and individuals. Special consideration is given to non-profit organizations.
 
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