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Community Support

NOVAGOLD and its project partners are committed to preserving traditional lifestyles and providing economic opportunities to communities throughout the Y-K region, whose political and social structure is represented by a diverse group of social, business, and governmental entities. Relationships between these entities are often complex and influenced by competing political and economic interests. Calista, TKC, and a variety of other Alaska Native business entities and associations have an interest in the Donlin Gold project and its potential benefits for the region. Engaging with communities in an open, respectful, and culturally sensitive manner while developing long-term, mutually beneficial relationships has been our approach since the early exploration of the Donlin Gold project – and will continue throughout its life cycle.

Community Shared Value Statements

As part of ongoing community support efforts, we continue to make progress in formalizing these relationships and finding common ground with Alaska Native villages through Shared Value Statements that build upon the long-term agreements with Calista and TKC that are already in place. At the end of 2021, Donlin Gold LLC had entered into Shared Value Statements with eight villages from the Y-K region (Akiak, Sleetmute, Napaimute, Crooked Creek, Napaskiak, Nikolai, Tuluksak, and Upper Kalskag). These agreements include educational, environmental, and social initiatives that provide support for these villages. Our goals for 2022 include entering into Shared Value Statements with additional villages.

Community Investments: Education, Wellness, Cultural Preservation, and Environmental Stewardship

Our community investment programs take many forms, including education programs, community wellness initiatives, cultural preservation, and environmental stewardship. Donlin Gold LLC supports a wide range of organizations and causes, from youth sports to scholarships to search and rescue.

In mid-January 2021, at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, the water supply plant in the Middle Kuskokwim village of Tuluksak was destroyed by fire, creating a health and safety crisis for the entire community. Donlin Gold LLC worked with the Tuluksak Tribal administrator and Tribal council to assess how they could best help coordinate support for immediate needs and sustainable long-term solutions. In the days following, Donlin Gold LLC – together with the State of Alaska, several other community organizations, companies, and individuals – stepped in to provide drinking water, buckets for carrying and storing water, sanitary wipes, diapers, and other health supplies. Donlin Gold LLC team members traveled to Tuluksak via the ice road and delivered 100 five-gallon reusable containers of water to be distributed to each household in the community. Shortly after the fire, Donlin Gold LLC worked with Alaska Commercial Company and Fox Air in Bethel to deliver 120 cases of water, along with basic needs items like paper towels, baby wipes, hand sanitizer, and bar soap. Donlin Gold LLC also arranged for Desert Air to donate a DC-3 flight directly from Anchorage to Tuluksak to bring a second delivery of water tanks, containers, pumps (including hose assemblies), totes for washing and bathing, scrub brushes for cleaning, 50 more cases of water, and other supplies.

In March 2021, the Thomas Lodge in Crooked Creek – the only lodging facility in the village – also suffered substantial fire damage. Donlin Gold LLC aided with labor and materials to get the building back in order and operating by May, in time for the busy summer season. Donlin Gold LLC is also working with Crooked Creek in improving the village’s water and wastewater systems; similar support is being provided to the village of Sleetmute.

In September 2021, Donlin Gold LLC worked with the State of Alaska and Calista to send fish from Bristol Bay to the Yukon villages affected by the closure of the salmon fishery to commercial and subsistence fishing. Donlin Gold LLC assisted with distribution and logistics to deliver fish to more communities on the Yukon River who had been devastated by the dismal numbers of returning salmon to their river. Food security is an ongoing issue in rural Alaska communities, particularly cultural foods like salmon. Donlin Gold LLC has committed to supporting additional food security programs in the Y-K region.

Donlin Gold LLC sponsored the Calricaraq (“to practice good health”) team from the Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation to travel to area villages to support residents and families who have lost loved ones to suicide – a heightened challenge in remote villages, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. This program helps communities deal with generational trauma and find healthy ways to grieve.

NOVAGOLD Fundraising and Community Support

Along with supporting Donlin Gold LLC’s initiatives in Alaska, NOVAGOLD recognizes the importance of supporting events in the areas where we operate. In May of 2021, we sponsored and participated in the Mining for Miracles Pie Throw, a fundraising event in support of the BC Children’s Hospital in Vancouver. Each year, senior leaders from across the industry are paired up in a friendly fundraising competition, with the one raising the most money earning the right to toss a pie at the other. NOVAGOLD president and CEO Greg Lang participated and helped raise funds for the Cellular and Regenerative Medicine Centre.

In 2021, NOVAGOLD employees participated in and contributed to the Lotus Light COVID-19 Community Caring campaign, which helped distribute more than 1.25 million pounds of hand sanitizers and wipes to thousands of organizations in British Columbia, Ontario, and overseas; provide financial support for the Lotus Light Emergency Kitchen; and provide care packages, disposable masks, and weekly hot meals to Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside impoverished community.


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