Our Food NL: Nunatsiavut
The communities of Nunatsiavut face complex food security challenges that impact residents' access to traditional wild food, as well as healthy, affordable, and culturally appropriate store-bought food.
Wild foods are nutritious, readily available, and have great cultural meaning in Nunatsiavut. But hunting bans, climate change, and the increasing cost of getting out on the land to fish and hunt, have made wild foods harder to access.
Store-bought foods supplement wild foods in Nunatsiavut. But communities like Rigolet have no road linkages to neighbouring towns, and this means food must be shipped into Rigolet by plane or boat. As a result, healthy store-bought food tends to be expensive, inconsistently available, and in the case of perishable food, they often arrive in an undesirable state.
Working with the partners listed below, this project conducted Community-Led Food Assessments in Rigolet and Hopedale, which led to the creation of 3 new food programs, and the expansion of an existing program, to help address barriers to healthy, culturally appropriate food in these communities.
Hopedale: The Community Freezer Program
Wild food is the preferred food of many people living in Nunatsiavut, but modern challenges are affecting residents' access to wild food in Hopedale. An expanded Community Freezer Program strives to improve the community’s access to wild foods, in the face of these challenges.
Rigolet: The Good Food Box Program
Several factors make store-bought food in Rigolet expensive and inconsistently available. The Good Food Box program lets residents bulk order “Good Food Boxes,” of local produce and unprocessed meats into their communities. By bulk ordering, residents share (and lower) their cost of food.
To increase residents' access to affordable produce, and to build community food self-sufficiency, Gardening Programs have been established in Rigolet & Hopedale.
Stories From Nunatsiavut (Audio Project)
In April of 2016, Food First NL and Audio Producer Annie McEwen gathered 18 stories about food programs, harvesting trips, and people in Nain, Hopedale, and Rigolet.
This project is led at the community level by the Hopedale and Rigolet Inuit Community Governments, with ongoing support from Food First NL. Funding was provided by the Public Health Agency of Canada.