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Gjoa Haven's 18 summer students to learn about politics on Nunavut Day

MLA Tony Akoak, MP Lori Idlout and Mayor Raymond Quqshuun Sr. will be front and centre during 25th anniversary festivities

Gjoa Haven is looking forward to a very active summer with an influx of 18 summer students, and Nunavut Day will provide an early highlight.

“In addition to putting them to work across various hamlet departments, we are also exposing them to all kinds of career options when people pass through town,” said Jennifer Wakegijig, CAO of Gjoa Haven.

For Nunavut Day, those plans include a talk by three elected officials, Mayor Raymond Quqshuun Sr., Nunavut Member of Parliament (MP) Lori Idlout, and MLA Tony Akoak on the evening of July 8.

Akoak told Nunavut News, “This year is a bit different because it’s the 25th anniversary of Nunavut. There are plans to celebrate that day within the community by members of the community who have been planning it for awhile... with a bunch of summer students. We will be talking to them about what we do and what our job is for in Nunavut and the community.

“I’m just going to be talking about what I do for the community of Gjoa Haven as an MLA and how I got elected. My other job is about being a Speaker for Nunavut in the assembly. I’ll be speaking about that as well... it’s to help support [the] youth’s future, and how they can help their community as a member, and how they can plan ahead... if they want to become part of it... It is for the future of our children.”

July 9, Idlout is hosting a pancake breakfast put on by hamlet staff and students, followed by a day of bannock-making and Inuit games. There will also be a talent show and barbecue in the evening.

“Nunavut Day is an important opportunity to celebrate the strength of Nunavummiut. We reflect on how much is achieved in just 25 years,” said Idlout in a statement to Nunavut News.

“This year, as part of my tour of Kitikmeot, I am proud to spend Nunavut Day in Gjoa Haven. I will be hosting a pancake breakfast with students before joining in the festivities. I hope to speak with as many people as I can. Nunavummiut deserve to be heard and I will do what I can to amplify their voices and their strengths."

“We are trying to encourage youth to stay in school and seek post-secondary education so they can have the best jobs in town,” said Wakegijig of the overall goal of the student initiatives for the summer.

Kira Wronska Dorward

About the Author: Kira Wronska Dorward

I attended Trinity College as an undergraduate at the University of Toronto, graduating in 2012 as a Specialist in History. In 2014 I successfully attained a Master of Arts in Modern History from UofT..
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