Fluctuating oil prices, the floundering Canadian dollar, and worsening growing seasons have caused soaring food prices. Recently the internet and various news sources have been having morbid fun with the new price of cauliflower (Indie88) but before the cauliflower debacle came the pictures of Nunavut grocery store shelves. February of 2015 saw prices such as $10.59 for a package of yogurt and $18.19 for a smoked ham (Eliott). Statistics Canada completed a survey of Canada’s food insecurity percentages between 2007 and 2012. While the were at the top of the ranking of provinces by food insecurity with the Northwest Territories showing 13.7 per cent and the Yukon 12.4, Nunavut has been by far the worst afflicted with food insecurity at 36.7%. Poor nutrition causes harm to every aspect of life as one of the most obvious physiological needs is at the very bottom of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Pond Inlet, or Mittimatalik, a small but growing (Pond Inlet Census Profile) community, the largest hamlet north of the 72nd parallel, has experience with these food issues and serves well as an example of what can and should be done about it as well as what has been done but does not work. Historically the government of Canada, when it has tried to help, pays little or no attention to the cultural needs of northern communities. Pond Inlet has managed to create its own soup kitchen to get good food to the hungry and in doing so are providing an excellent example of how to provide support to an Inuit population.
On January 26, 2016, a group of volunteers opened the doors of the Anglican parish hall to serve soup, sandwiches, and traditional Inuit food to hungry members of the community. Currently opening on Tu...
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...above the horizon. Growth Chambers could provide sustainable jobs, sustainable nutrition, and an environment conducive to good mental health.
Solving the food problem will not solve every issue faced by the people of Pond Inlet and other remote northern communities. Crumbling infrastructure, rampant mental health issues, and the still healing scars from both past and recent injustices can’t be healed or fixed by a full stomach. It is, however, undeniable that widespread nutrition would provide increased strength, power, and engagement in communities. The preventative nature of a well-balanced diet would mean a reduced strain on mental and medical health services. Children would be more engaged in school and perhaps be able to take advantage of that momentum and achieve new heights of success. Only once a community is nourished can it begin to build a better future.
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