From Harvest to House: Developing a pathway to housing self-sufficiency in remote First Nations communities

Housing issues in First Nations communities are widespread and well documented, this work aims to co-develop housing solutions for Northern Saskatechwan communities through a series of workshops.

Status: Current

Research themes: Health and comfort Equity Resilience

Research areas: Equitable and resilient housing for communities; Building design and retrofits for performance improvement; Indoor microbes and moisture; Human-Building Interaction

Project Objective

This project aims to bring together stakeholders from remote First Nations communities, sustainable building industry members, First Nations community organizations, non-profit organizations working on capacity building programs in vulnerable communities, and academic researchers. The developed framework for creating self-sufficient housing and training programs will be adapted more widely with knowledge shared among stakeholders.


This community-based participatory action research will use narrative as a learning tool to exchange knowledge related to sustainable housing development, build strong working relationships for future research exploration, and develop a pathway towards enabling self-sufficient housing development in remote communities. Initial community consultations occurred throughout Saskatchewan in December 2022 and February 2023. The “From Harvest to House Workshop” occurred in September 2023 in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan where eight different communities were represented and took part in story-telling and community building activities. Data analysis is underway to determine pathways forward after the completion of the workshop.


We anticipate outcomes of this work to enable housing self-sufficiency and co-development of a housing prototype in the North.


In the news:

Connaught Global Challenge Award to build pathways to housing self-sufficiency in remote First Nations communities


Journal Publications
People Involved

Dr. Nicholas Spence

Dr. Nicholas Spence


Dr. Sarah Haines

Dr. Sarah Haines

Principal Investigator

Dr. Helen Stopps

Dr. Helen Stopps

Co-Principal Investigator

Natalie Clyke

Co Investigator

Michael Wong

MASc Candidate (Toronto Metropolitan University)