Nunavut is currently experiencing a population growth where Inuit now make up the youngest population in Canada, with 51 per cent being under the age of 25. Inuit typically make up at least 90 per cent of the population in communities in Nunavut, with the exception of the capital Iqaluit, where half the population are Inuit and the other half non-Inuit Canadians. It is common to hear local Nunavummiut voice the loss of traditional culture and the Inuktitut language in Iqaluit, where more people are taking on a more southern way of life. This young generation is growing alongside a quickly-changing arctic, and there are many practical skills that are not being taught in the colonial education system.
Nunavut's Young Hunters
Alex Flaherty of Polar Outfitting and his team of hunters have been taking youth out of the land since 2018 to teach traditional Inuit skills in hunting and arctic survival, funded with the help of Ilitaqsiniq (Nunavut Literacy Council). I joined in on a few of these outings where I met many capable young men, including a 10 year old boy, Kaniq Allerton, whom I watched grow over a year. Subsistence hunting is an incredible human activity that connects people with the land and the cycle of life. Spending time with these boys showed me both the fun and the responsibility in Inuit adolescence as they learned the skills necessary to go from boyhood to become confident arctic hunters.
True North Photo Journal
Also by Lisa Milosavljevic —