Important Update on A Three Fires Collaborative Quest
Fire 1: Indigenous Business Advisory Program
ITO is committed to providing business support year-round through our IBA program. Whether you are in the start-up stages of your business or you are an established business looking to grow, our team can provide custom one-on-one advisory services throughout your business journey.  

Fire 2: OTEC and ITO’s Indigenous Tourism Workshop Series
To ensure accessibility, ITO is pleased to offer our workshops in-person, virtually or through self taught online courses.

Fire 3: TIAO and ITO’s Employer to Employee Job Matching
ITO is happy to announce that job matching and wage subsidies will continue until May 23, 2022. Employers must be registered in the program by March 31, 2022. To register please 
sign up here.

If you have questions or are interested in any of these complimentary services, please contact 
Tourism Hospitality Emergency Recovery Program
As businesses and operators prepare for a strong summer season, workforce recovery remains a challenge. Access tools and strategies specific to your region, including readiness assessments, real-time data, and workshops for businesses. Learn more at LetsGetReady.ca.
RAISE Digital Main Street Program

The RAISE program provides coaching, mentorship, advisory services and grants to entrepreneurs looking to increase their capacity and scale their business. The objectives of RAISE are to: 
  1. Provide non-repayable grants of up to $10,000 to eligible racialized small businesses and entrepreneurs upon the completion of a structured coaching program.
  2. Deliver a coaching program that will provide individual business advice and coaching to applicants as part of the program to support implementation of the required business transformation plan.
Eligible costs include:
  • Fees for expertise/professional services (excluding owner/staff wages and salaries)
  • Marketing and communications costs (e.g. print media, signage, promotional ads etc.)
  • Costs related to digital transformation (e.g. website, digital marketing, software, etc.
  • Travel costs necessary to attain business transformation plan objectives
Canada Digital Adoption Program
The Canada Digital Adoption Program (CDAP) is designed to boost e-commerce presence and digitize how Canadian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) run their businesses behind the scenes. The program provides funding and expertise to businesses, as well as training and work opportunities for young Canadians.

Businesses will be able to apply for two different kinds of support:
  • Stream 1: Grow Your Business Online, will help SMEs take advantage of e-commerce opportunities
  • Stream 2: Boost Your Business Technology, will help businesses with the development and implementation of digital adoption strategies
There is vast opportunity in digital, to market more strategically, operate more efficiently, and use the insights produced to propel tourism businesses forward. CDAP is a valuable resource for industry members looking to take their first steps into going digital or maximizing their ongoing efforts.
Deadline Approaching for Resilient Communities Fund
The Resilient Communities Fund supports the recovery efforts of organizations impacted by COVID-19 with immediate, medium, and longer-term recovery projects. Applicants can apply for a minimum of $10,000, and up to $200,000, with a maximum of $100,000 per year.

Resilient Communities Fund grants support projects that help rebuild an organization’s capacity, enhance their resiliency, and meet the changing needs of their communities. Projects should be focused on: 
  • developing new approaches;
  • starting new activities;
  • adjusting strategies, or 
  • planning for future challenges 
Application deadline is April 6, 2022.


Resorts of Ontario
Spring Marketing Program
The Spring Marketing Program is so hot, you’re going to want to sign up before it’s too late. Resorts of Ontario (ROO) has partnered with Destination Ontario for their spring program to bring members even more marketing opportunites! 

Tier 1 is sold out! The good news is there is still space available in Tier 2 & 3! Some of the Tier 2 opportunities are;
  • Sponsored social ads direct from Resorts of Ontario, driving the traffic direct to your resort
  • Pre-summer push to help fill any gaps for your summer season
  • NEW summer web online magazine
  • Experience Gift Guide promoting your spring and summer experiences selling gift certificates
  • Ad on Spring and Summer Landing Page with Links to Your Website
  • Social Media Sponsored Support driving qualified traffic
  • E-blast Newsletter to 100K Audience
  • Pre-summer push 
  • Extension into the summer
  • and so much more! 
To access this program, you must be a member of ROO. As an Indigenous-owned resort and member of ITO, you can become an ROO member at an exclusive ITO rate through our partner benefits. Email ITO at membership@indigenoustourismontario.ca to learn how to become a ROO member and participate in the Spring Marketing Program. 
Sīgwan Festival
Date: March 25 – 27, 2022
Location: Mādahòkì Farm, 4420 West Hunt Club Road, Ottawa, ON K2R 1H4

Join Indigenous Experiences, producers of the Summer Solstice Indigenous Festival and operators of Mādahòkì Farm in Ottawa’s greenbelt to celebrate the Spring Season. Everyone is invited to reconnect with the land while learning about Indigenous traditions during this beautiful change of season. Enjoy authentic Indigenous programming and an Indigenous Makers and Farmers Market, interactive creative workshops, culinary delights and meet the rare Ojibwe Spirit Horses – fun for young and old!
Upcoming Workshop:
Tourism Business Development Certificate
Limited to a maximum of 10 participants, Indigenous members are invited to attend this free, two day, in-person training to learn how to enhance your business from successful business owners within the Six Nations of the Grand River Territory. 

Training Overview
Day 1
  • Digitizing your Business/Social Media + Audience Engagement Tactics with facilitator Layla Black
  • Partnership Development Tactics with facilitator Conrad Bobiwash
  • Includes Lunch
Day 2
  • Visitor Services + Customer Relations with facilitator Jaquie Jamieson
Date and time TBD. To register, email: angelica.smith@theheartofontario.com.
Bringing DEI to DMOs

Tuesday, April 13, 2022
Time: 12:00-1:00pm ET

Hosted by Tourism Industry Association of Ontario, this webinar features best practices of integrating Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) principles at the Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) level. The session will begin with a presentation from Greg DeShields, Executive Director of Tourism Diversity Matters, after which Rebecca Godfrey will moderate a discussion with Explore Edmonton on the status of their journey to build a more inclusive tourism industry.
IMPACT Sustainability Conference

 May 8 – 11, 2022
Location: Victoria, BC

The tourism industry has the opportunity to impact global change and lead the world in a new age of environmental and social responsibility. The IMPACT Sustainability Travel & Tourism Conference 2022 is a national conversation on sustainable tourism, exploring and comparing models for tourism recovery. An opportunity to hear from some of the most creative and innovative experts in the business and address our new reality of higher expectations, for and of visitors. 
Register here.
Are you Hiring in the Tourism Industry?
ITO is currently looking for employers in the hospitality and tourism industry to match various Indigenous job seekers with jobs in these areas. To participate in the program, you must be a tourism business in Ontario, and you must be willing to support your new employee’s training and development in collaboration with the Three Fires program.
Free Online Food Tourism Training Course by CTA & OTEC
The Culinary Tourism Alliance (CTA), in partnership with OTEC, has created a brand-new, free blended suite of online and instructor-led training program for hospitality businesses to better leverage the power of food tourism in Ontario. Food tourism is one of the fastest growing forms of tourism and a powerful driver for sustainable economic development in our region and beyond. Restaurants are an important part of the tourism industry in Ontario. Learn how local sourcing, storytelling and partnership can help grow your business and attract more people to Ontario. To learn more and to enroll please click here.
Indigenous Youth Entrepreneurship Survey

The National Aboriginal Capital Corporations Association (NACCA) has developed an Indigenous Youth Entrepreneurship Survey to help better understand the interests and needs of Indigenous Youth Entrepreneurs in Canada. 

If you are an Indigenous business owner between the ages of 18 and 39, ITO would like to invite you to complete NACCA’s 10-15 minute survey. Every participant who completes the survey will be provided with a free downloadable, digital art created by Chief Lady Bird, a Chippewa and Potawatomi artist, educator, and community activist from Rama First Nation.

Check out the video of one of many inspiring Indigenous youth who have successfully launched their business with the support of the AFI network. Inuk entrepreneur Dawn Forrest created Inuuvunga Designs to celebrate Inuit culture and way of life through infant and toddler apparel. Learn more about Dawn’s success and find out how Futurpreneur and NACCA are supporting Indigenous entrepreneurs!

Survey is open until April 4, 2022, at 7:30pm ET.

Central Counties Tourism
Call for Directors

Central Counties Tourism (RTO6) is seeking new members for its Board of Directors. Board members will bring leadership, passion, and vision to the team that will be instrumental in growing the tourism industry in York, Durham, and Headwaters regions of Ontario. If you are interested in contributing your knowledge and experience to help build a strong tourism region, the Board of Directors invites you to submit your nomination for the available positions by completing and submitting the fillable form posted

The Central Counties Tourism Board of Directors is seeking volunteers for four positions:
  • Director-at-large, 3 year term
  • Durham Representative, 3 year term
  • York Representative, 2 year term
  • Headwaters Representative, 2 year term
Please send your completed nomination form to king@centralcounties.ca by April 11, 2022.


Next Steps of Reopening
Effective April 27, 2022: 
  • Mask requirements are removed in all remaining settings 
  • All remaining orders under the Reopening Ontario Act expire 
  • Remaining health-care directives are lifted, however, the government will still direct health-care workers to wear personal protective equipment 
  • After this date, masks will not be mandatory but will be encouraged and highly recommended for those who are immunocompromised, at high risk, or who choose to still use them.
Pre-Entry Testing Requirement Removed for Vaccinated Travellers
Last week, the Government of Canada announced a series of adjustments to border measures, the most significant to date. These new measures will be effective April 1, 2022, and represent a long-awaited milestone for Canada’s tourism sector. Key changes are summarized below.  

Effective April 1, 2022: 
  • Fully vaccinated travellers do not need to complete a pre-entry test (they may still be selected for random tests on arrival but are not required to quarantine).
  • Non vaccinated travellers will still need an on-arrival test and a day 8 test and must quarantine for 14 days. 
  •  ArriveCAN is still needed for entry to Canada by all travellers.
For cruise ships: 
  •  All Passengers will still need to get an antigen test 24 hours before boarding their cruise ship. 
  • They will no longer need to be tested leaving the cruise ship. 
This announcement is a pivotal moment for Canada’s tourism industry who has continued to persevere and adapt throughout the pandemic. This change makes it easier for people from around the world to visit Canada this spring and beyond. Read the full news release here

      Indigenous Tourism Ontario
      1300 Hwy 540
      4 directions Complex Unit 4
      Aundeck Omni Kaning, Ontario

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