In the community

Explore our outreach initiatives aimed at involving communities.

It is crucial to make our work accessible to community members, involving them in the conversation to receive their input and learn from their expertise.

​Involving Nunatsiavummiut in our project is our priority, and keeping all lines of communication open at all stages of the research process is crucial.

Check out some of our outreach initiatives aimed at looping everyone in to take part in this work.

People gather together in a community room

uKalagalâk 2023 - Postville & Hopedale

uKalagalâk, meaning discuss many things, is a project wide event that took place in both Postville and Hopedale in March-April 2023. This included sharing information with community about the SNF project  including what research is being done, where, by who, how, and why. Instead of doing this with powerpoint presentations, we used demonstrations, on the land activities, and games as our way of opening a dialogue on research in the region.

Two women talking on the frozen water

Redirecting and reconnecting - anânak and panik

The second goal of uKalagalâk was to hear from communities to adapt our research directions, priorities, methods, communications &  outreach to support Inuit-led governance and  decision-making. We invited folks from across the coast to join in on this  conversation. Here, Postville Inuit Research Coordinator Katrina Anthony and her anânak (mother) Peggy Andersen share a golden hour moment at the On the Land portion of the Postville uKalagalâk event.

Snow mobiles parked outside the community centre

Parking lot's full!

A parking lot full of skidoos for our Friday night uKalagalâk open house in Postville - we drew in 20% of the community! We sparked interest by visiting people at their homes and places of work during the day to chat. Mentioning good food and a round of ocean-themed bingo also helped.

Getting together in the community

Bingo brings the people together!

Months later, Inuit Research Coordinators John Winters and Caroline Nochasak returned to the same rivers to collect the temperature loggers.

Community bingo event

A comedic first bingo round

Not only did bingo attract people to join, it was also a fun and engaging way to communicate some of the work we do. The idea was for people to apply what they learned from the workshop during their bingo game to know, for example, which image represented the Ice Shark to cross off. We learned pretty quickly in our first game where the gaps were - and adapted to keep bingo players appeased. It was a great lesson in on the spot-adapting, definitely played a role humanizing visiting researchers, and made for a comedic and entertaining first bingo round. Here, invited Elder Maria is helping Valesca out during her first time as a bingo caller - a very serious and important role (it was learning curve!).

Talking in front of an audience

Research demonstrations

The uKalagalâk event aimed to share information about research on the project in ways that are interactive, hands-on, and stimulate conversation. Here, Emma Harrison uses water of different temperature and salinities, and dyes to demonstrate the stratification process she is able to observe using CTD instruments.

Looking a large map

A crowd pleaser - the giant floor map

A large floor map with research locations on it took center stage, as a converging point with stations situated around it. A big shoutout to Canadian Geographic and Ocean School for helping us secure this great visual tool, play mat, and conversation starter. Here, MSc student Natalie Perrin navigates the map with students in Postville.

Teaching children in the community

Fun for everyone

Making the way we communicate our research hands-on and interactive meant we could connect with all audiences, including the kiddos! We are grateful that teachers from schools in both communities brought their classrooms by.

Two people at the grocery store

Good food = good events

Our Hopedale caterers Hulda & Rosie with a full cart, anticipating full bellies to come. Communications Coordinator Valesca de Groot met with them a few days prior to the event to talk through the schedule, the expected turn out, and what meals might be needed, then went on grocery shopping adventure for ingredients and figured out a menu. The food was DELICIOUS and it was so fun to see the Hulda and Rosie from Hopedale, and Jen for the Postville event work their magic.

Serving soup

Wild ingredients... even better!

On top of having amazing caterers, we had amazing ingredients - notably, fresh wild food. Inuit Research Coordinator John and his uncle Zeke went out to hunt partridges. Here you can see attendee Valerie and elder Maria pouring themselves some yummy partirdge soup for dinner (with doughboys!!) at our event in Hopedale.

People on snowmachines over frozen water

Hands on, on the Land

Following the weekday open houses - the weekend included on the land research instrument demonstrations. We had quite the convoy heading out to our location up the bay in Postville.

Two people pose for the camera

Canvas tent hangs

Here Inuit Research Coordinator Katrina Anthony and Dalhousie Postdoc Emma Harrison hang out in the canvas tent set up at our on the land location in Postville - wood stove keeping them warm, and spruce boughs keeping them comfy.

Field work on the ice

On the Land research demonstrations

Here, Eric Oliver, Vanessa Gauntlett, and Maria Merkarutsuk take a look at data collected by a CTD cast under the ice only minutes before. All the people in this picture are either Nunatsiavummiut or have made Nunatsiavut their home, but are each from different communities, have different careers, experiences, and perspectives.

Outdoor group discussions

Dissections on the Kamutik

MUN PhD student Caroline Ofosu and English River fish count supervisor Maurice Jacque dissect a rock cod using the Kamutik box as a table. The two are working collaboratively on Caroline's PhD thesis looking at the dietary patterns of Arctic char populations, and its intersection with flesh coloration.

Group photograph outdoors

The Postville uKalagalâk team after a day on the land

We are very gratefully for the team who brought uKalagalâk to both Hopedale and Postville - it was a diverse group, which allowed for different engagement methods and personalities clicking. Here you can see the uKalagalâk team from Postville with (top left to right) Joe Onalik, John Winters, Katrina Anthony, Mairi Miller-Meehan, Emma Harrison, Natalie Perrin, Caroline Ofosu, Dylan, and Eric Oliver, Nathan Jacque, and Valesca de Groot (bottom left to right).

Gathering together as a community to enjoy good food

Full house

Great attendance at the Seabird Research Event with 68 community members attending (20% of Rigolet). People enjoyed hearing about the research, eating pizza and fresh fruit trays, and playing fun games!

Two infants smiling

Seabird activities for all ages!

Serena and Addison Shiwak enjoying some of the seabird activities at the sea bird open house in Rigolet, hosted by PhD candidate Cerren Richards and their momma Inuit Research Coordinator Jacqueline Winters.

People gather together outdoors

2022 Rigolet On the Land Workshop

This workshop was funded by Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada (CIRNAC) Climate Change Preparedness in the North (CCPN) program and offered great insights for Sustainable Nunatsiavut Futures around methods of knowledge mobilization, research communication, and effective models for community events.

Photo credit: Eldred Allen, Bird's Eye Inc.

Outdoor field work

Hydroacoustic work at the On the Land Workshop

The On the Land Workshop also provided an opportunity for the Inuit Research Coordinators to undergo training surrounding workshop planning and facilitation.Here we see PhD student Emmanuelle Cook and Inuit Research Coordinator John Winters discussing under water and under ice noise after a hydrophone demonstration off the dock.

Photo credit: Eldred Allen, Bird's Eye Inc.

A child painting

A mapping journey at the Rigolet On the Land Workshop

The visual representation of data grounds research to people and place. The exercise of recording and mapping Inuit knowledge was discussed, and each research activity was tied back to a dynamic map throughout the workshop.

Photo credit: Eldred Allen, Bird's Eye Inc

Discussions by the ocean

Rigolet, Nunatsiavut: "Our Beautiful Land"

Inuit have a strong, inherent connection with the land. Holding this workshop in the beautiful space where this research is centred added a sense of fascination and belonging to the atmosphere of the workshop that facilitated organic conversations and idea sharing.

Photo credit: Eldred Allen, Bird's Eye Inc.

Woman doing art

Grasswork: cultural links to the land

Jane Shiwak and Sarah Bakie led a conversation about grasswork including it’s cultural meaning, history, relation to activities on the land.

Photo credit: Eldred Allen, Bird's Eye Inc.

Two people talking

Grasswork: cultural links to the land

Sarah and Jane took the group for a walk along the shoreline to show where grass grows, and later identified locations on the map where grass is found and collected.

Photo credit: Eldred Allen, Bird's Eye Inc.

Getting together with food

Wild food at the On the Land Workshop

Eating hunted food at the Rigolet On the Land Workshop tied our conversations back to the land once again. Activities like fishing and hunting are crucial for cultural and mental wellbeing, providing a delicious meal and a full stomach.

Photo credit: Eldred Allen, Bird's Eye Inc.

Two people drawing on a very large canvas

Mapping workshops

Here, John Winters and Caroline Nochasak contribute to a map at one of the mapping workshops organized by Breanna Bishop for her PhD project. This project is funded as part of the Community-based Observing of Nunatsiavut coastal Ocean Circulation (CONOC) project led by Eric Oliver. At this event, elders, knowledge keepers, and community members took part in a mapping workshop by drawing travel routes to track changes.

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