Inuk singer Susan Aglukark is on a mission to help feed Nunavut families struggling over the holidays.
Thanks to the "incredible support and donations from wonderful Canadians," Aglukark purchased about 300 kg of non-perishable foods for the Niqinik Nuatsivik Food Bank in Iqaluit and another 150 kg for the Deacons Cupboard in Rankin Inlet. She arrived in Iqaluit with the food delivery yesterday.
"This is the first of many projects I will be assisting in through the Arctic Rose Project," Aglukark wrote on her Facebook page.
CTV News reports the singer, who was named to the Order of Canada in 2005, has raised over $4,000 through various auctions and related fundraisers, the second year the Juno-winning singer has sent food to the region.
"It's a morale-boosting campaign," she told CTV News, adding that 80 per cent of those who go to the food bank are under 18 years old. "I put this project together thinking I know what I need to do which is just to relieve the stress of feeding your family over the Christmas holidays."
The musician, who thanked various companies and police departments for their help, added an additional drive to help the food banks is also being planned for sometime in the spring of 2015.
A recent Canadian Press article highlighted the need for food in the region with the United Nations addressing the issue. The jobless rate in the territory of Nunavut is 16.5 per cent now for Inuit while the number of welfare recipients in the area is dramatically greater (49.1 per cent of the population) than the second greatest (B.C. at 10.5 percent).
Meanwhile, the price of products is exorbitantly high. Two litres of orange juice sold for over $26 at one grocery outlet with four litres of milk priced at over $10. A 2014 Nunavut Food Price Survey revealed people paying $16 for one kilogram of chicken with the average Canadian spending $7. Flour was priced almost three times higher ($13 versus $5 in the rest of Canada).
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