OmniGlobe Networks, Inc. been appointed by the First Nations’ Emergency Services Society of B.C. (FNESS) and its partner, the First Nations Technology Council (FNTC), to provide enhanced broadband access to over 2,700 residents living in remote First Nations communities in British Columbia.
This news follows the Government of Canada’s recent announcement to contribute $7.86 million for the construction and provision of satellite broadband network capacity. The project aims to provide affordable satellite capacity for broadband services in communities where satellite technology is the only reasonable means of providing broadband access. It is funded by Infrastructure Canada under the Government’s National Satellite Initiative (NSI), with financial contribution from OmniGlobe and the FNESS working in collaboration with the FNTC.
High speed Internet connectivity will be delivered to homes, band offices, schools, health centers and businesses; broadband access will enable communities to benefit from the delivery of advanced e-business applications such as tele-education, video-conferencing, and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services, stimulating new economic development opportunities in the region. The 21 communities identified currently have very limited and unreliable Internet access and virtually no technical support. OmniGlobe Networks will supply satellite earth station equipment and local access networks for a high-capacity satellite broadband service to every home and business within the 21 communities. OmniGlobe will also work with the FNTC co-ordinator to provide training for the local technical support persons who will assist users in the community and perform the network maintenance and administration tasks. The project is well underway. The first installation will be on the Nuchatlaht’s Oclujce No. 7, on the North West of Vancouver Island, and is expected to be completed by the end of March 2009. Technical teams will also continue to visit participating communities in an effort to ensure that the remaining 20 communities are installed and connected by the end of 2009.