NEWS BRIEFS: Food bags for youth, art input and more

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Food bags handed out to youth

Since the beginning of the month, the Inuvik Youth Centre has been distributing food bags that contain fruits, vegetables and other snacks to youth all over the community.

Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday until the end of August, around 32 bags of food are handed out to youth on each of those days, according to youth centre employee Gailann Raddi.

Since the beginning of the month, the Inuvik Youth Centre has been distributing food bags that contain fruits, vegetables and other snacks to youth all over the community. Aaron Hemens/NNSL photo
Since the beginning of the month, the Inuvik Youth Centre has been distributing food bags that contain fruits, vegetables and other snacks to youth all over the community. Aaron Hemens/NNSL photo

Whatever’s remaining, I drive around and give out what’s left to those kids who need it,” said Raddi.

The bags are prepared by Food Banks Canada through their After the Bell program, which focuses on addressing youth hunger while simultaneously promoting healthy eating.

The initiative in Inuvik is a collaboration between the Inuvik Food Bank and the Inuvik Youth Centre.

Wrestling show finds venue

Totally Arctic Wrestling (TAW)’s first live wrestling show, “Proving Ground”, will be hosted at the Ingamo Hall Friendship Centre on Nov. 16.

Ingamo Hall is an iconic piece of our community, a lot of great events have been hosted there and we are excited to continue that legacy,” said TAW co-founder Dez Loreen in a press release. “We are putting together a great card of action; Proving Ground is going to be a show you don’t want to miss!” 

TAW was co-founded by Loreen and Wade Blu Gruben in June. The wrestling company has more than a dozen wrestlers featured in their lineup, who are all preparing for the group’s first training camp in October.

Both Loreen and Gruben will also wrestle and star in the show. Gruben’s wrestling persona will be a character named “Blu”, while Loreen will rotate between a masked hero “Deztro” and a villain named “Zane Matthew”.

Residents share their input on future arts strategy 

The final public engagement session for the GNWT’s upcoming NWT Arts Strategy program was hosted in Inuvik on July 18.

The whole thing is drafting a NWT Arts Strategy, which is in phase two, which is the action planning part,” said Johanna Tiemessen, manager of arts and fine crafts for the GNWT’s Department of Industry, Tourism and Investment (ITI).

Phase one of the program was drafting the strategy, while phase two will look at what actions the GNWT can take to meet the objectives of the draft strategy.

During the engagement session, actions identified by residents included increased access to art spaces, facilities to create and sell art, using art for healing and wellness, and more.

The information and discussions that we’re having with artists will be compiled into a recommendation report by our facilitator, which then will help to inform actions when we’re drafting the new arts strategy,” said Tiemessen.

Engagement sessions have been hosted throughout the summer in communities such as Norman Wells, Behchoko, Fort Smith, Hay River and Fort Simpson.

The strategy will guide the government in its priorities when it comes to programs and services for the arts community across the NWT,” said Tiemessen.

The first strategy was launched in 2004, and the renewed strategy will be ready sometime in early 2020, according to Tiemessen.

Elders programs receive federal funding

Elder-based programs at the Inuvik Native Band, Ingamo Hall Friendship Centre and Inuvik Community Corporation will each receive funding from the federal government to better support their initiatives.

The announcement came on July 23 by Michael McLeod, the Member of Parliament for the NWT, who said that 16 Elder-based projects in the territory will each receive a slice of the $321,797 investment from the federal government’s New Horizons for Seniors Program (NHSP).

Through the New Horizons for Seniors Program, the Government of Canada is providing a wide range of opportunities for seniors in the NWT to participate in meaningful activities that nurture their personal growth and foster community vitality,” said McLeod in a press release.

The cultural revitalization project at the at the Inuvik Community Corporation will receive $25,000, while the Elders engagement program at the Inuvik Native Band will receive $23,935. The Ingamo Hall Friendship Centre’s Elder’s program will receive $14,800.