A cluster of communities north of Meadow Lake are now living the 4G life.

Canoe Lake Cree Nation and the Metis communities of Jans Bay and Cole Bay have partnered with Sasktel to get better cell and online service under its new community participation model.

The infrastructure upgrades had full support from all band councils, said Canoe Lake Chief Francis Iron. The biggest challenge in a process he says “wasn’t hard at all” was coming up with the funding.

Canoe Lake, Primrose Lake Economic Development Corporation and the Meadow Lake Health and Social Development Authority all contributed to the project, which Iron says cost about $70,000.

His community pitched in $42,000, he said.

The biggest benefit from the upgrades, which are now complete, is cell service.

“The people were just ecstatic, they loved it. It’s different to have from no service at all to getting some service now, it’s a big thing that happened,” Iron said.

The Internet is much faster now as well.

Late last month, Sasktel announced its first completed project using the community participation model, which happened in the Wollaston Lake and Fond du Lac area.