Ottawa’s Urban Inuit Renaissance

Elizabeth Payne and Julie Oliver (photos), Ottawa Citizen
April 17, 2015

“There is a growing sense of cultural pride, especially among children who are steeped in Inuit culture in a variety of programs that are unique to the city.

At Ontario’s only Inuit kindergarten, operated at the Inuuqatigiit Centre for Inuit Children, Youth and Families in Ottawa in conjunction with the Ottawa Carleton District School Board, children play games with seal bones and caribou legs and are taught in Inuktitut. At after-school programs, in addition to homework help, Inuit students get lessons in their cultural heritage.

Ottawa is also home to the only Inuit family health centre in the world, one that northerners envy. There are numerous other programs for the community – from food banks, housing and addictions treatment to church services conducted in Inuktitut and regular community feasts and field trips to pick apples and berries, organized through Tungasuvvingat Inuit, Ottawa’s Inuit social and community organization.”