Looking after tomorrow
- Advertorial | December 15, 2020
SAGE PRO Protect is the outcome of a smart business pivot by Pro Metal Industries, a 100% owned Pasqua First Nation Company. It is always difficult building a business in any economic climate, but in 2020, Covid-19 hit the economy hard. To survive in a pandemic, a business needs to be nimble and in the right market.
“In the beginning of this pandemic, we were having weekly updates with the government, and many First Nations were requesting personal protective equipment (PPE). The government said they had lots, but it was not getting to our front-line people, NADAP workers, community health nurses and home care staff on reserve. There was no PPE,” said Pasqua First Nation Chief Peigan. “Our staff at Pro Metal Industries reached out and bought PPE from ten different suppliers around the world to distribute to Saskatchewan First Nations in partnership with the Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations.”
Through expertise already available through Pro Metal industries, PFN leveraged these skills to create another company, SAGE PRO Protect which was able to access and innovate PPE solutions for the First Nations within Saskatchewan. SAGE PRO designs and manufactures PPE solutions including masks, face shields, hand sanitizer, touchless hand sanitizer stands, portable field sinks, UV/HEPA Filter Air Purifiers, and desk barriers, also known as Sugar Cubes. They also supply drive thru testing stations to First Nations.
“I’m glad our people could get PPE to do their jobs safely, effectively and efficiently. Our community had lots of supplies and were well prepared. My heart went out to our Indigenous brothers and sisters because they did not have any. It wasn’t a money-making process, just getting equipment. And that’s when we asked why Pro Metal can’t do this not just for Indigenous people but for schools and offices, for everybody,” added Chief Peigan.
PFN Group of Companies CEO, Dr. Richard Missens oversees the Pasqua First Nations seven businesses and joint ventures and says the pivot to make SAGE PRO Protect has driven their sales this year, and he says one important product line is the BLU-MED shelter systems.
“These BLU-MED structures are field hospitals. We have deployed forty-one of them to First Nations across Canada that need places to isolate and treat Covid-19 patients,” said Missens. The BLU-MED hospitals are erected by a trained crew and come fully equipped with tables, beds and everything you need in a hospital. They are also winterized.
Chief Peigan knows they must be patient building their business arm for future for the Nation, but the rewards will be well worth it. “The Elders say if you spend your money today its gone. What about tomorrow? That’s what we look at,” said Chief Peigan. “One day I’m going to be an old man and I would like to go to our gathering place on our First Nation and listen to the Chief and Council of the day. I hope I will hear and see the benefits of our businesses when I am that old man. We always have to look after tomorrow.”
Learn more about SAGE PRO Protect and their PPE solutions, visit: www.sageproprotect.com