Inuvik Homeless Shelter board member Peggy Day received Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami’s (ITK) and the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation’s (IRC) community volunteer award earlier this month.

Lucy Kuptana, left, chair of the Inuvik Homeless Shelter board, and Peggy Day, board member, pose together at Ingamo Hall August 21.
Photo courtesy of Tony Devlin/ITK

“I was really pleased to receive the award because it brings the shelter out in the open. ITK and IRC recognized the work we’re doing … and it’s good because it’s bringing more awareness to the community about what the shelter needs,” said Day.

The awards were presented at a community event at Ingamo Hall August 14. The awards aim to recognize the contributions and achievements of Inuvialuit in their communities.

Day said she shares the award and recognition with the rest of the Inuvik Homeless Shelter’s volunteer board members: Lucy Kuptana, Susan Peffer, Vina Norris and Cheryl Williams.

“It should have been the whole board, because it isn’t just myself that does this work,” she said.

Day said the award comes at a time when the shelter’s needs are greater than usual.

In April 2018, shelter clients were relocated to a vacant group home on Reliance Street after bed bugs were discovered in one of its rooms.

The shelter building, located at 116 Kingmingya Rd., has been undergoing fumigation and renovations since the bed bug incident earlier this year.

Day said shelter clients should be able to return to the shelter building in early- to mid-September.

“We’re trying to work to re-open the shelter,” said Day. “It’s so needed in the community. Not only for Inuvik, but for the surrounding communities as well. We have a lot of people that are transient that move to Inuvik because they don’t have anything else in their community, and they know we have a shelter here, so at least they’ll have somewhere warm to stay.”

Day said she hopes the recognition will bring more awareness to the shelter’s needs in the community, and encourage more people to get involved with the board of directors and helping out when needed.

“I want to say thank you to ITK and IRC for the recognition,” she said. “If anyone wants to volunteer their time as a board member, or stop in to help, please do.”

Melissa Rogers was also recognized for her work with the Inuvik Emergency Warming Centre.

Underwood Day, 17, received the ITK advancement of youth award.

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