On the Rise: Indigenous Tourism Alberta’s 2022-’23 Annual Report

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ITA MicroFund (2023-24)

The ITA Microfund, made possible by Indigenous Services Canada (ISC), is exclusively available to Indigenous Tourism Association (ITA) members to apply for up-to $10,000.  Who Can Apply The ITA Microfund welcomes applications from all ITA members. This funding initiative is designed to support the acquisition of small capital items. We…
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ITA is hiring: Finance Project Accountant

Indigenous Tourism Alberta (ITA) is a non-profit organization devoted to helping grow and promote authentic, sustainable and culturally rich Indigenous tourism experiences we want to share with the world. ITA is hiring a Junior accountant who will be responsible for performing a variety of accounting activities in accordance with accounting…
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ITA Mini Gatherings

ITA is launching an exciting new chapter in Indigenous tourism! Our Indigenous Tourism Alberta Mini Gatherings are coming to five vibrant locations across the province: Edmonton, Calgary, Lethbridge, Grande Prairie, and Fort McMurray. While we won’t be hosting our traditional three-day gathering this time, we’re thrilled to introduce you to…
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Good Relations Mentorship Program

Good Relations is a mentorship program delivered in partnership between Indigenous Tourism Alberta (ITA) and Catalyste+ (formally CESO). The program supports Indigenous tourism operators in Alberta in their business growth towards becoming visitor, market, or export ready. Through the program, tourism operators work 1-on-1 with Catalyste+ Advisors to expand their…
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Join us for the ITA Annual General Meeting

Mark your calendars for Indigenous Tourism Alberta’s Annual General Meeting. The meeting will be hosted at the Four Points by Sheraton Edmonton West on Wednesday, Nov. 1, 2023 from 1- 3 p.m.  The Annual General Meeting is open to all voting and non-voting members of Indigenous Tourism Alberta. You…
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Indigenous Tourism Alberta Cultural Awareness Training

Indigenous Tourism Alberta’s (ITA) Cultural Awareness Workshops are aimed to help those working in the tourism industry broaden their understanding of Indigenous peoples, land and Indigenous tourism. These full day workshops take participants through aspects of history and cultural understanding, focusing on Indigenous tourism and responsibility in promoting and…
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ITA Strengthening Our Roots Program

The essence of Strengthening Our Roots is the Indigenous tourism businesses that comprise our diverse Indigenous tourism industry. Smaller, independently owned businesses are susceptible to changes in the marketplace, and larger businesses can struggle to adapt. But with the lingering effects of the pandemic, additional obstacles have arisen, adding unexpected…
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Senior Director, Development and Partnerships

Career Opportunity Indigenous Tourism Alberta (ITA) is hiring a Senior Director to focus on Development and Partnerships.  Reporting to the Chief Executive Officer, the Senior Director is responsible for supporting all operational initiatives in regards to industry development and partnership, ensuring all programs and projects align to the overall…
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Manager of Sales, Marketing and Travel Trade

Career opportunity Indigenous Tourism Alberta (ITA) is hiring a manager to focus on sales, marketing and travel trade.  The manager will be responsible for growing international sales of ITA member tourism experiences by building relationships and raising awareness among international travel-trade buyers. Reporting to the Director of Marketing, the manager…
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From being the first to offer guided fishing tours to bringing families together, this business owner says “it’s so special”

Slave Lake Fishing Tours Entrepreneur Profile of Joshua Courtorielle What’s your name and where are you from? My name is Josh Courtorielle and I am from Slave Lake, Alberta. Describe your business in one sentence. We provide fishing tours for the public – whether you are a beginner…
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ITA Six Senses Program

Applications are now closed for ITA’s Six Senses Program. The goal of this experiential, land-based Program is to prepare market-ready Indigenous tourism businesses to develop or refine new and existing visitor experiences over the course of three Stages: Experiential Journey Mentoring Journey Piloting Journey Participants will get inspired through…
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The ultimate Alberta Indigenous experiences | Come Walk With Us

Amid the stunning natural beauty of the Canadian province of Alberta are vibrant, timeless and diverse Indigenous cultures that will open your eyes to new ways of seeing the world.  Northern Alberta Metis Crossing Built on the original river lots of Métis settlers to this region in the…
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Fund program supports 34 ITA members building their Indigenous tourism dreams

New tipi accommodations. The creation of a snowshoe experience on the land. The building of a new learning lodge. These are just a few of the exciting projects that ITA supported through the ITA MicroFund in 2022. Through a unique partnership between ITA, Prairies Economic Development Canada…
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Tourism Entrepreneur Accelerator Program

Firecircle is proud to have the support of Indigenous Tourism Alberta to deliver Firecircle’s Transition to Tourism Entrepreneurship Program to ITA’s members. The Transition to Tourism Entrepreneurship Program is provided by Firecircle in partnership with the Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada and funded in part by the Government of…
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“Something in my soul that tells me I am meant to do what I do,” shares Métis herbalist about her business

Entrepreneur Profile of Kalyn Kodiak of Experience Metis What’s your name and where are you from? My name is Kalyn Kodiak and my family is from Lethbridge, Alberta. We’ve been in southern Alberta for seven generations. Describe your business in one sentence. Kodiak Herbal is a community of…
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Join us for the ITA Annual General Meeting and Networking Session

Mark your calendars for Indigenous Tourism Alberta’s Annual General Meeting and the ITA Networking session. The meeting will be hosted at the Westin Hotel Calgary Airport on Tuesday, February 21, 2023. Networking from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. ITA Annual General Meeting from 1- 3 p.m.  Lunch to be…
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Award winners show the innovation and resilience of Indigenous tourism

Indigenous Tourism Alberta is pleased to announce the winners of its second annual awards gala at the ITA Gathering held at River Cree Resort and Casino on Enoch Cree Nation, Treaty 6 territory and Metis Region 4. The awards gala celebrated Indigenous tourism excellence and best practices in four categories…
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ITA MicroFund Applications are now open!

This application is for the Indigenous Tourism Alberta MicroFund – ITA members can apply for up to $40,000 in tourism relief funding. This program is supported in partnership with Travel Alberta and Prairies Economic Development Canada (PrairiesCan). Please note that Travel Alberta will be jointly…
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A toolkit for working with ITA and its members

Working in the Indigenous tourism industry can be rewarding for everyone involved, whether you are a member of a community, a DMO or a future partner in the industry. The goal of this toolkit is to empower you to meaningfully engage and build respectful relationships with Indigenous communities and operators…
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Nominate a business for the CITE Awards

The Celebrating Indigenous Tourism Excellency (CITE) Awards celebrate and honour Indigenous tourism business owners/operators who have made an impact and created change and growth within the Indigenous Tourism Industry in Alberta. The winners of the awards will be celebrated at the ITA Gathering, held December 5-7 at the River…
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Ignite your Fire! Indigenous Tourism Alberta Entrepreneur Start-up Workshop

Indigenous Tourism Alberta is hosting Entrepreneurship Workshop throughout the province. This training is a full day, no cost training aimed to help those who want to start an Indigenous tourism business or have just recently started an Indigenous tourism business. By the end of the session, ITA’s…
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Sharing traditional skills is a ‘doorway to a common understanding’ for entrepreneur

Entrepreneur Profile: Natalie Pepin of Reskilled Life By Kelsey Olsen. Photos by Noella Steinhauer. What’s your name and where are you from? My name is Prayerful Woman, I am known as Natalie Pepin. I am from Winnipeg and I now live in the Tawatinaw Valley, about an hour and…
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Eight tips for taking iPhone photos of your business

Good photos are important to modern marketing. Her are a few tips to get you started with the smartphone you have in your pocket  If you’re planning on marketing your business on the Internet, one of the first things you’ll need is strong photos — the Internet is a visual…
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Siksika First Nation guide strives to educate people about Blackfoot culture and history from business

Entrepreneur Profile: Many Guns Ranch By Kelsey Olsen Jeannette Many Guns, owner and guide of Many Guns Ranch. Photo by Noella Steinhauer. What’s your name and where are you from?My name is Jeanette Many Guns and I am from Siksika Nation. My late father Clifford Many Guns…
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Blackfoot guide wants his business to help people connect with culture and traditions

Entrepreneur Profile: Blackfoot Traditional Outdoor Adventures. By Tawnya Plain Eagle. Clinton Turnringrobe is the entrepreneur behind Blackfoot Traditional Outdoor Adventures. Photo by Candice Ward. What’s your name and where are you from? My name is Grey Horse rider, O’otkii’miio’kitopi. My English name is Clinton Turningrobe. I am From…
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Cultural Tourism Pathway Program

ITA is excited to announce the launch of our Indigenous Cultural Tourism Pathway intake. ITA is seeking Indigenous community members to create small, dedicated teams to set the direction for grassroots tourism development in their community; participants may include youth, Elders, entrepreneurs, artisans, community leaders, representatives from community organizations,…
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Treaty Acknowledgements Webinar

Join ITA to learn about what Treaty Acknowledgements are and how to make meaningful ones to utilize in your everyday.
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Webinar: ITA 101

Incorporated in 2018 as a not-for-profit member-based society, Indigenous Tourism Alberta (ITA) provides leadership in the development and marketing of authentic Indigenous tourism experiences through innovative partnerships. This webinar will take you through ITA as an organization and how we are here to help you and your tourism business succeed!…
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Indigenous Tourism Alberta- Best Practice Case Studies

The Indigenous tourism industry is rapidly growing in Canada as more people seek out authentic, meaningful experiences when they travel. The growth of the industry is also a result of the organized efforts by Indigenous communities and leaders who are actively creating opportunities in the sector. The first…
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Help build the future of the ITA brand

We are hard at work developing a more robust brand for Indigenous Tourism Alberta to help support future marketing efforts. This brand will help us understand how we see ourselves and how others see us. It will guide the overarching story we share to sell Indigenous tourism to travellers,…
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ITA Development Matrix Tool

This matrix provides a means of capturing a business’ position on a scale measuring their capacity to attract guests and to a degree, their guest capacity.Go through the matrix to learn what are the next steps or things you need to have in place to grow your business in…
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Winter campaign aims to raise awareness of Indigenous tourism experiences in Alberta

The team at Indigenous Tourism Alberta has launched a winter marketing campaign that aims to get Canadian travellers to think about how an Indigenous experience can make their life better.  The campaign is focused on raising awareness of winter Indigenous experiences to travellers in Canada through tactics such as Facebook…
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Indigenous Tourism Market Preparedness Series

ITA is excited to offer a workshop and webinar series to our members. Based on your market preparedness level, we are doing a variety of workshops to help our members learn more about where their businesses are currently at, and what the next steps are in growing. We will review development and marketing tools to help set…
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Indigenous Tourism Alberta Micro-Grant Fund

This application is for the Indigenous Tourism Alberta Microgrant fund, which is for a max contribution of $5000. The application can be done orally by submitting a video to info@indigenoustourismalberta.ca . The application deadline is February 5th at midnight. This Microgrant is for Alberta Indigenous Tourism operators that are market…
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Authentic Indigenous | Making connections for the ultimate Alberta experiences

Amid the stunning natural beauty of the Canadian province of Alberta are vibrant, timeless and diverse Indigenous cultures that will open your eyes to new ways of seeing the world.  Explore the transformative and unforgettable Indigenous experiences in Alberta. SAMPLE ITINERARIES Indigenous Tourism AlbertaFour days in and…
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Labour Needs of the Indigenous Tourism Sector

Indigenous Tourism and Alberta and Tourism HR Canada will be hosting a series of half-day meetings with Indigenous Tourism operators to discuss the labour challenges your business faces as the tourism industry recovers from the pandemic.  These meetings are part of Indigenous Tourism Alberta’s Labour Market Study. This…
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Funding for Entrepreneurs and Communities

I’m a small Indigenous tourism business and I need financial support: Business Development Bank of Canada The Benefits Finder is a tool that can help you find Benefits and Services that you may be eligible to receive. It asks a few questions and uses your answers to search.
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Darkness Coming to Light: Truth Sharing Supports within the Indigenous Tourism Community

Warning: ITA has created this blog to support ITA members being asked tough questions by visitors looking to learn more about Residential Schools and finding Mass Unmarked Graves of children who attended. If you are in crisis or feeling triggered, you can reach the National Indian Residential School Crisis…
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Website Development Program

Indigenous Tourism Alberta is offering a website development and enhancement program to tourism operators in Alberta with visitor, market, and export-ready businesses. The program is designed for Indigenous tourism operators in Alberta to create a new or enhance an already existing tourism-based website for…
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Transforming Lateral Violence into Lateral Kindness in the Indigenous Tourism Industry

A collaborative blog with Lateral Kindness Educator and Advocate Marilyn Jensen from Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada  Indigenous Tourism Alberta’s Development team saw a need for awareness on lateral violence. It is a topic that has repeatedly come up while facilitating workshops across the province this year. This blog intends…
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Peak Season Preparation: Adapting your business creatively with COVID-19 Restrictions

With the third wave of COVID-19, ITA recognizes the importance of innovative ideas to adapt to the province-wide restrictions this upcoming peak season. It is easy to focus on the negative impacts on tourism due to COVID-19; however, we must remind ourselves of the opportunities in tourism development and pivoting…
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Peak Season Preparation: Summer Staff Hiring

The peak season for the Alberta tourism industry is typically in the summer months. There are many opportunities to hire summer staff employees to help your business through peak season. Seasonal summer staff, specifically summer student staff, provide value to enhance your tourism experiences with enthusiasm and growth.  This blog…
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Peak Season Preparation

Pre-Booking Tips and Customer Engagement In Alberta, the tourism peak season typically starts during the summer months. As we gear up for peak season, there are some important things you need to do to get ready. ITA is excited to launch development blogs to help support member businesses moving forward.
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Indigenous Tourism Startup Workshop

Developed in partnership with the Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada and the Government of Alberta, the Indigenous Tourism Startup Workshop will take participants through the steps of becoming an Indigenous Tourism Entrepreneur! This workshop is designed with questions and activities for you in regard to working in the Indigenous…
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Amy Willier Memorial Artisan Grant

Amy Willier was an influential Cree entrepreneur, artisan and advocate for Indigenous art, and a co-owner of Moonstone Creation which has been a valued and active member of ITA since its creation. In Amy’s memory, this grant was created to support Indigenous artisan businesses in Alberta. This grant is…
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Indigenous Tourism Alberta Marketing Microgrant

Indigenous Tourism Alberta is excited to be launching the ITA Marketing Microgrant program for Market or Export Ready Indigenous Tourism Businesses in Alberta. This grant will provide Indigenous Tourism businesses with $4000 for marketing development and activities. Marketing development can include but is not limited to, website enhancements, marketing & sales planning,…
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ITA Webinar- National Guidelines

In this webinar, learn about market preparedness in Indigenous Tourism and the National Standards for Tourism Businesses.
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ITA Webinar- Tips for Artisans

Join ITA on a webinar on best tips for Artisans! Learn about receipts making, selling online, shipping, packaging and more.
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ITA Webinar- Preparing for the Holiday Season

Join ITA to learn about how to prepare for the upcoming holiday season to keep the momentum going into the New Year!…
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Cultural Tourism Pathway

ITA is excited to announce the launch of our new Indigenous Cultural Tourism Pathway. This new grassroots training program for community tourism development is set to begin in January 2021. ITA is seeking First Nations community members to create small, dedicated teams to set the direction for grassroots tourism development…
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ITA Webinar: Working With the Travel Trade

October 29th Working with the Travel Trade can help grow your business to national and international markets. Join Indigenous Tourism Alberta’s special guest for this webinar to learn more about the Travel Trade and the process of how to expand your Tourism business to national and international markets.
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COVID-19 resources for Indigenous tourism industry members and communities

Indigenous Tourism Alberta’s number one concern is the well-being of our members across the province. To support all ITA members with the most up to date information regarding industry support and funding. Due to the breadth of information available, we have put together a COVID-19 resource blog post to offer…
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ITA Webinar: Creating Meaningful Relationships

September 24 – Creating Meaningful Relationships Creating partnerships in tourism can be an amazing way to create unique experiences, lower competition and double the reach to audiences. In this webinar, Indigenous Tourism Alberta will take you the process of creating meaningful partnerships with Indigenous tourism operators for the benefit of…
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ITA Webinar – Online Booking Platforms

Being able to book online increases your chances of having visitors plan and book your experience easily. There are many types of booking platforms. In this webinar, Indigenous Tourism Alberta will take you through what booking platforms are, what kinds are available, and the steps to take to get started!…
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ITA Webinar – Creating a Tourism Website

A good tourism website looks a bit different from a regular business website. In this webinar, Indigenous Tourism Alberta will show you what a good tourism website should look like and include in order to drive more visitors to your tourism destination. When: Thursday, August 27 @ 11 AM mstWhat: ITA…
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Webinar: Tourism during COVID-19 – Building Virtual Experiences

Expert panelists Sebastien Desnoyers-Picard, Director of Marketing at the Indigenous Tourism Association of Canada; Shae Bird, Executive Director at Indigenous Tourism Alberta; and Robin Tapley, CESO Advisor and Director of Tapley’s Nature Trails, discuss building virtual experiences in tourism across Canada. For more information: CESOTourism Association of Canada…
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Webinar: Financial Planning for Indigenous Tourism Businesses

Tourism is a unique industry. In Alberta, there is quite a seasonality factor. Join Indigenous Tourism Alberta and partner Business Link for a webinar on how to create a financial plan to carry your business through the off-season and prepare you for the unexpected.  …
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Webinar: Marketing your Business in a Cost-effective Way

There are effective ways to market your business without spending a fortune in doing so. Join Indigenous Tourism Alberta on some tips toward cost-effective marketing strategies.
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Webinar: Tourism Restart

Are you re-opening your tourism business and don’t know where to start? Join Indigenous Tourism Alberta for this educational webinar on restarting strategically. We will go through general tips, as well as some information on shifting your marketing to attract domestic travellers within Alberta.
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Post COVID-19 re-opening: general tips and best practices

This webinar will guide tourism business operators who are re-opening through health and safety best practices. The information provided is based off of the recommendations from Alberta Health Services. We have also compiled a list of resources for general tips and best practices for operating your business during COVID-19. This…
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How to shift your social media strategy

As the world changes daily, we want to empower our indigenous tourism partners across Alberta to stay strong by pivoting. Social Media will continue to grow as an influential channel in the weeks and months to come. Indigenous Tourism Alberta suggests some minor tweaks to your current strategy in…
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Indigenous Tourism Alberta presents 2nd Annual Indigenous Tourism Summit

Indigenous Tourism Alberta has postponed this event – please see here for more details. Indigenous Tourism Alberta is proud to present their second Annual Indigenous Tourism Summit hosted at The Grey Eagle Casino Resort & Casino on Tsuut’ina First Nation on Treaty 7 territory…
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