Unikkausivut is made possible thanks to the collaboration of key Inuit advisors and Inuit organizations.
Martha Flaherty was born in Inukjuaq, Quebec, and relocated to Grise Fiord in the High Arctic during the Arctic resettlement of the 1950s. The NFB film Martha of the North (Marquise Lepage, Les Productions Virage Inc., 2009) delves into the devastating effects this deportation had on her family. Flaherty has been active in seeking justice for the Inuit on this issue and others, and served as president of Pauktuutit, the Inuit women’s association of Canada. She’s fluent in various dialects of Inuktitut and has worked extensively as a translator. As production consultant on the Unikkausivut box set she oversaw all Inuktitut versioning and provided translation and voice-over.
Peter Irniq served as the Commissioner of Nunavut from 2000–2005 and was also a member of the legislative assembly of the Northwest Territories for two terms in the 1970s and ’80s. He is well known for his active commitment to and advocacy of Inuit culture in general and, in particular, for promoting the Inuktitut language and the inclusion of Qaujimajatuqangit—Inuit traditional knowledge—in institutions serving the Inuit. Irniq versioned the titles in the Netsilik series featured in Unikkausivut.
Charles Keelan, or Chucky, is a singer-songwriter born in Iqaluit, Nunavut, and raised in a small village called Quaqtaq, in Nunavik. He has two children, Arsaniq and Anautalik. Charles Keelan has been playing guitar for 12 years. He is particularly well known for his work with singer Beatrice Deer, who is his partner both on stage and off. The alternative-rock-style artist is currently deepening his exploration of sound by taking an intensive audio recording program at Vanier College in Montreal.
Dennis Nakoolak was born in Penticton, British Columbia, on March 6, 1981; he was adopted by his uncle Elijah and his wife Iqalik Pootoogook, and raised in Cape Dorset, Nunavut. Dennis graduated from Peter Pitseolak High School in 2002. He then moved to Iqaluit, Nunavut, and enrolled in Inuit Studies in the Language and Culture Program at the Nunavut Arctic College, where he was awarded a scholarship to teach Inuktitut in Paris, France. In 2006, Dennis attended the Nunavut Sivuniksavut training program in Ottawa and completed year one of two with a much stronger sense of cultural pride. Since then, he has worked for various Inuit organizations in the National Capital Region, mainly as an interpreter/translator and Inuktitut teacher.
ORGANIZATION MEMBERS OF THE UNIKKAUSIVUT ADVISORY COMMITTEE
The following organizations have provided essential support for the project since its inception and are playing a vital role for its launch in the North.
AVATAQ CULTURAL INSTITUTE
The Avataq Cultural Institute is the Inuit cultural organization of Nunavik (northern Quebec). It provides a strong foundation for the living culture of today’s Inuit and has built a reputation as the cultural leader for the Nunavik Inuit, with the goal of ensuring that Inuit culture and language continue to thrive into the future.
The Avataq Cultural Institute provided essential guidance on the Unikkausivut box set content from the outset.
Avataq’s Suzanne Beaubien sits on the project’s advisory committee.
INUIT TAPIRIIT KANATAMI (ITK)
Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, headed by president Mary Simon, who was recently awarded the Governor General’s Northern Medal, is the national Inuit organization in Canada, representing four Inuit regions: Nunatsiavut (Labrador), Nunavik (northern Quebec), Nunavut and the Inuvialuit Settlement Region in the Northwest Territories.
ITK’s Melissa Irwin is a member of the Unikkausivut advisory committee.
INUVIALUIT REGIONAL CORPORATION – CULTURAL CENTRE
The mandate of the Inuvialuit Regional Corporation is to continually improve the economic, social and cultural well-being of the Inuvialuit through the implementation of the Inuvialuit Final Agreement and by all other available means.
Cathy Cockney is a member of the Unikkausivut advisory committee for IRC.
In Inuktitut, Makivik means “to rise up,” and this is a fitting name for an organization mandated to protect the rights, interests and financial compensation provided by the 1975 James Bay and Northern Quebec Agreement, the first comprehensive Inuit land claim in Canada, and the more recent offshore Nunavik Inuit Land Claim Agreement that came into effect in 2008. Makivik Corporation owns subsidiary companies such as Air Inuit, First Air, Nunavik Arctic Foods, Nunavik Creations, Halutik Fuels and Cruise North, and jointly owns with other Inuit regional corporations Pan Arctic Inuit Logistics (PAIL).
Kitty Gordon serves as the committee representative from Makivik Corporation.
NUNATSIAVUT GOVERNMENT – TORNGASOK CULTURAL CENTRE
The Torngasok Cultural Centre in Nain, Labrador, focuses upon the preservation, protection, promotion and advancement of Labrador Inuit language and culture through language camps and other opportunities for Inuit youth and adults to learn and speak Inuktitut.
The Torngasok Centre’s connections to Nunatsiavut language and culture were key to getting three films from Nunatsiavut versioned by the OKalaKatiget Society, the Labrador-based Inuk TV production company.
Dave Lough, director of the Torngasok Cultural Centre, sits on the advisory committee.
NUNAVUT TUNNGAVIK INCORPORATED
Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated, or NTI, ensures that promises made under the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement (NLCA) are carried out. The Inuit exchanged Aboriginal title to all their traditional land in the Nunavut Settlement Area for the rights and benefits set out in the NLCA. NTI coordinates and manages Inuit responsibilities set out in the NLCA and ensures that the federal and territorial governments fulfill their obligations.
Natan Obed, director of social and cultural development at Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated, is a member of the advisory committee.
Pauktuutit is the national voice of the Inuit women of Canada. It fosters greater awareness of the needs of Inuit women, advocates for equality and social improvements, and encourages the participation of Inuit women in the community, regional and national life of Canada. Pauktuutit leads and supports Inuit women in Canada in policy development and community projects in all areas of interest to them for the social, cultural, political and economic betterment of the women, their families and communities.
Lucy Manniapik serves on the advisory committee for Unikkausivut.