BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Starting from the left is the President Jacob Keanik, the following two are the Directors Uriash Puqiqnak and Joanni Sallerina, then we have our Secretary/Treasurer Raymond Quqshuun, and the Vice-President Salomie Qitsualik.
The Nattilik Heritage Centre opened on October 17th, 2013 in the Hamlet of Gjoa Haven. Gjoa Haven is one of 3 communities, located in the eastern Kitikmeot Region, whose residents are primarily descendants of the Nattilik people. Tradition and culture, including preservation of the local language, are strong values in Gjoa Haven. Administration and Operations of the Nattilik Heritage Centre is the responsibility of the Nattilik Heritage Society.
The primary mandate of the Nattilik Heritage Society is to help preserve the cultural and traditional values of the Nattilik people. The Nattilik Heritage Centre showcases the culture of the Nattilik people and provides cultural and language strengthening in the community. Nattilik art and craft, which provides an expression of culture through carvings, tapestry, print and traditional items, are used in the Centre to complement other exhibit features in the representation of Inuit lifestyle and legend. The Society intends to develop archival capacity in the community and source cultural resources that exist in the community as well as in southern venues.
The Nattilik Heritage centre was developed through a partnership that includes the Nattilik Heritage Society (NHS) and its two founding members, the Kitikmeot Inuit Association and the Hamlet of Gjoa Haven. The Nattilik Heritage Society has the responsibility to administer the operation of the centre and any future related infrastructure and programming development. The Kitikmeot Inuit Association has committed to a long-term lease for office space located within the facility. Both KIA and the Hamlet of Gjoa Haven participate in the governance of the Society through their respectively appointed directors and jointly appointed chair.
Arts and Heritage Programming
The Nattilik Heritage Society has been active in supporting the arts/crafts community and programs that help strengthen local culture and language. It operates programs in traditional sewing, applique art, and sculpture – as funding permits. All of these programs place emphasis on strengthening the Inuit language. Led by elders who speak in their native language during program delivery, each of these programs provided younger generations the opportunity to immerse in Natilingmiutut and learn their traditional language from their elders. Translators are present at these sessions.
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