Port Saunders Area

The Port Saunders Area has a broad costal line rural geography that spans from River of Ponds north to Bartlett's Harbour (76 kms /1 hours).   There are 9 communities throughout the Port Saunders Area and 1 rural health center (Rufus Guinchard Health Center located in Port Saunders).

The Town of Port Saunders, with its health centre and other government services and facilities is a major hub of the northern region of Economic Zone 7. Combined with the towns of Port au Choix and Hawkes Bay the Ingornachoix Region is a major service centre for the central area of the Great Northern Peninsula. The town is named after British Admiral "Sir Charles Saunders" who, under the command of Major General James Wolfe, commanded the British Warship, Neptune during the successful expedition to capture Quebec from the French in 1760.   During his first survey and mapping of the Newfoundland coastline in July 1766, Captain James Cook named this sheltered harbour in honor of his commanding officer during the Battle of Quebec.

Port Saunders is a well-protected harbour and has been a haven for many ships throughout its history and that proud marine tradition still continues with the fishing industry today. The town has a historical waterfront of individual fishing stages and wharves for the small boat fishers, dotted from one end of the harbour to the other. The Marine Service Centre services the large fishing fleet and is located at the bottom of the harbour. In years gone by, when boats were the dominant mode of travel, Port Saunders was a major port of call. Evidence remains in some of the old buildings on the wharves. Near the mouth of the harbour is Keppel Island, where the lighthouse guides the harbour entrance. Tourists can enjoy a visit to the island and view the lighthouse.

According to the 2011 Census the population for the Port Saunders Area was approximately 2,151.   This represents a population decline of 7.5% since 2006.   The Port Saunders Area has a median age of 42.   There is a heavy reliance on seasonal work in this area with summer tourism, fishing and forestry remaining popular income sources.   An outmigration of individuals from the Port Saunders Area is clearly evident, considering the Residual Net Migration rate was -0.88% (-20 individuals) in 2011 - that means that 20 people migrated out of the area in 2011.   In 2011 there were 5 births in the Port Saunders Area, which is a 67% decrease since 2010 when there were 15 births.  

Port Saunders Community Advisory Committee

The Port Saunders Community Advisory Committee (CAC) is a non-profit group consisting of a variety of community partners throughout the Port Saunders   Area (River of Ponds to Bartlett's Harbour) whose main focus is on improving the health and well-being of communities and marginalized populations (e.g., seniors, low income or single parent families, individuals with mental health issues or physical limitations).   Actions of the Port Saunders CAC include the identification of local needs and supporting the implementation and evaluation of health promotion and disease prevention initiatives with a focus on healthy aging, child/youth development, community development, community engagement, and sustainable partnerships with the local Primary Health Care team, seniors groups, Town Councils, Schools, and other community stakeholders and volunteers.  

If you would like to become a member of the local Community Advisory Committee contact the Primary Health Care Manager for the area at 709-458-2211 ext. 209.