Yearly Archives: 2011

Question 3. How can we take action?

What are specific actions that you could take in your own life
that would help you or your community adapt to or help mitigate  the issues we have discussed up to now?   

How can we encourage more young people to get involved and take part?


Question 2. Where does your Knowledge Come From?

Consider your knowledge and understanding of the environment, your community, and the changing climate which was described in Question 1.  In this age of online news, facebook, and twitter how important is traditional knowledge?  What about scientific knowledge?  

Tell us where you get your information, how you communicate it to your friends and family, and how it helps you make decisions or take action in your everyday life.




Online Forum Starting Today!

Tell us your own story and read those of others!  Generate discussion and make change happen for the better.

Go to Ookpik’s Forum Page and tell us your story.


Objectives and Process of the Online Forum Discussion – Click here to read more


  1. To hear stories from young people across the
    Circumpolar North about their lives and views of change, knowledge and action
    for sustainable development in the north;
  2. To facilitate discussion between young people across the North and gain an understanding of key tools for action and change that are most relevant to Northern Youth.


  1. There is no pre-registration, the discussion will
    be open to anyone who logs on. Stories and opinion posts should come from
    Northern Youth (30 years or under, living in or originally from the Circumpolar
  2. On November 28th
    a guiding question will be posted on this page inviting comments and stories
    from Northern Youth;
  3. Anyone will be able to post a comment or story
    using google, twitter, facebook , or yahoo accounts or by providing an e-mail
    address to login;
  4. All posts will be moderated and any inappropriate
    postings will be removed;
  5. Daily updates of the discussion will be posted on
    the Ookpik Ilitsimajuq facebook account;
  6. Follow up questions will be posted on Friday
    December 2
    nd and Wednesday December 7th
    to keep the discussion going and improve our understanding of how we can move
    from Knowledge to Action in the North;
  7. A summary of the discussion will be posted on the
    Ookpik website and the Ookpik Ilitsimajuq facebook account by Friday
    December 16th.

Northern Youth who participate in this online discussion are eligible to be part of a group of Youth Leaders with all expenses paid to the IPY conference in Montreal.

To find out more about this opportunity see information on the page: 

Youth Leaders Program



Question 1 – Tell us your Stories

Share with us a personal story about how climate change has affected your life or is having an impact in your community. What do you think it means for your future?

If you have a picture which relates to the story you are telling add it to your post.

To join the discussion click ‘login’ below then follow the prompts to use your facebook, google, yahoo or twitter account to log in and join the discussion. Then click ‘add new comment’ below and tell us your story or comment on something others have written.

Don’t forget to click the +image option to upload a picture and tell your facebook friends about the discussion by clicking the Like botton bellow!



Opportunity to be part of a group of Youth Leaders with all expenses paid to the IPY conference in Montreal!

Are you a Young Leader from the Circumpolar North who is looking for ways to make your voice heard?

Would you like to participate as a Northern Youth Panelist at the
International Polar Year Conference in Montreal, April 2012?

 Building on the Young Leaders’ Summit on Northern Climate Change
2011 (Yellowknife, November 10-12) and as a preparation for the International
Polar Year Conference, from Knowledge to Action (Montreal, April 2012), the
International Institute for Sustainable Development in collaboration with
Schools on Board is hosting an online event aimed at hearing Northern Youth
voices on knowledge, change and action.

 From November 28th to December 12th log click on our Forums page and participate in the discussion! 

Northern Youth who participate in the online discussion will be eligible to be part of a group of Youth Leaders with all expenses paid to the
IPY conference in Montreal.


Calling All Photobugs

To all comedians masquerading as shutter bugs, or vice versa:

We here at understand your smart humour and/or crazy obsession with taking millions of random pictures! That is exactly why we want you to encourage you to submit a photo and witty caption that represents sustainable development in the north. The top three pictures will go on the front page of Good Hunting minions!

Submit all pictures to:


The Globe and Mail: The Trials of Nunavut


By the numbers, it’s Canada’s most violent region. Awash in bootlegged alcohol, haunted by history, hamstrung by a chronically over stretched government”

Recently, The Globe and Mail did an amazing 9 part written article, and a 4 part on-line interactive article on the problems that Nunavumiut are facing. The article details problems such as crime rate, education, employment, housing, suicide, and murder. These are things that most Nunavumiut arefamiliarwith seeing or hearing about. But, on the flip side, the report also captures Nunavut’s beauty and tranquillity accurately. The article itself is well done and captures the essence of the problems we face on a week-to-week basis.

I felt like it was reports like these, the ones that put it all out in the open, are going to help Nunavumiut to speak about these repressed feelings that were caused by years and years of harsh, abusive, residential schooling. Not the money that the Canadian government forked up as “compensation” for the years of grief, and the ruined relationships of families, that even today the effects of which can be seen. The report made me feel like there was a chance at redemption. That now, that the issues were wide out in the open, that there could be change. But I came to the harsh realization that that old saying “time changes nothing, people do” is so very very true. We need to come together, educated, resilient, and persistent to accept the responsibility and weathering of this change.

Check out the link:

What I found to be very interesting is that under the heading “related articles” at the bottom of the page, where I found and opened “The Young are Neglectedin Nunavut” link, I found at the bottom of that article, nothing other than a “comments” link. This was new for me, I haven’t posted on a news article directly on the page before. So when I found this thread you can imagine how awestruck I was:

Under the post by “69buick” you can read the replies to his comment. The very first reply states that the government should bring back residential schooling. Ignorance, enough said.



9:05 PM on March 11, 2011

The fundamental issue is what happens when parents don’t care about their children. Is that something a government can fix?


Rob in Calgary

11:26 AM on March 12, 2011

No, government can’t fix it. Not on the scale that children are neglected in the North. Not without some sort of institutional response (residential schools redux).

Children growing up in isolated rural communities rife with alocholism and sexual abuse are going to have terrible childhoods. Native or not.

And all the guilt and money from non-native Canadians won’t fix the problem. The old way of life for natives are long gone (here and in the rest of the world). They’re never coming back.

Integration isn’t a great option either. But it’s less bad than the status quo of unviable, isolated, poisonous communites.


Traditional Knowledge for Future Generations


Traditional knowledge is an important part of the circumpolar world. For some people, it might seem like something stuck in the past. Personally, I think that it is an important challenge that Inuit are facing. It is crucial for the younger generation to know about their culture and a way of thinking that related well to their geographic situation.

The territory of Nunavut has been created in 1999, after many years of struggle. They developped the concept of Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit (IQ). IQ is the institutionalization of the Inuit traditional knowledge inside of the Government of Nunavut. It consists in values important for Inuit and the objective is to include them in the different decisions and actions made by the government workers.

I believe that education is one huge part of where inuit traditional knowledge can be transmitted to youth, giving the fact that the link with elders has changed. Land trips, presence of elders and culture classes can be a way to raise cultural awareness.

As I explained it before, it is all governmental organizations that have to promote inuit traditional knowledge. However, some organizations are putting culture as their main objective. Isuma productions are working towards developping movies and documentaries about Inuit. Also, the department of Culture, Language, Elders and Youth is in charge of promoting IQ principles. Also, the Nunavut Arctic College includes inuit classes and programs that enhanced the Inuit culture.

As a personal objective about that topic, I would like to work on cultural awareness about Inuit issues. I like to think that knowing about other cultures and being more open helps promoting the initial culture. This is why I would like to create material about inuit culture that could be used for a conference, an article or a blog. I would like to talk about the different prejudices people have about Inuit and to show the contemporary situation of the life in the circumpolar world.


Where do we start?

I am finding this difficult to write at the moment so I will just say this:

In my opinion, these are the top 5 things that if they changed, we could see Nunavut reach its true potential.

1. Healthcare and counselling that go above and beyond the basics.

2. Women being valued and treated as highly as men.

3. Addictions being few and far between.

4. People reaching higher levels of education and returning to help Nunavut.

5. People feeling empowered to take a stand on issues, and like they can be a part of real change.

These are ideas that could help to spur these changes:

1. Fund non-profit groups like there are in other parts of Canada. Often in other provinces, it is not the government programs but the family services that are the most helpful in providing career help, counselling, and advocacy. I think having a children's advocacy organisation would really help as well.

2. Having a legal system that actually enforces charges of domestic violence, sexual assault, and creates ways for women to escape unhealthy relationships to be established in other communities away from the accused would help. Give lawyer residency programs to real lawyers graduating from actual law programs in the south.

3. Also addictions counselling would help put these cases down in the first place. Having more RCMP presence in all communities and more ways of screening what gets into communities would also help.

4. Having a more relevant education system for northerners and having incentives for people to stay in school would help. Give automatic partial scholarships for university when people finish high school based on their grades and how many years they completed (similar in some provinces)

5. Cut the crap on all the reasons and excused behind why things are supposed to be happening. Concentrate on how we can change ourselves and the people around us for the future. Not concentrate on who is to blame and forget to move forward. It is past the time for that now.

Just some general thoughts.