Paulie Chinna: Arctic Inspiration Prize

Ministers' Statements and Speeches

Yellowknife — February 13, 2020

Mr. Speaker, today I would like to highlight and celebrate recipients of the 8th Annual Arctic Inspiration Prize – Northern Compass and The Dehcho: River Journeys.
The 8th Annual Arctic Inspiration Prize Awards Ceremony was held in Ottawa, Ontario on February 5th. At the Ceremony, Northern Compass received the grand prize of $1 million, and The Dehcho: River Journeys project received $370,000.

The Arctic Inspiration Prize recognizes and promotes the extraordinary contribution made in the gathering of Arctic knowledge. It is designed to celebrate and bring further awareness to organizations and their plans to implement this knowledge to real world applications, for the benefit of the Canadian Arctic and the Arctic Peoples.

I had the honor of presenting Northern Compass with their $1 million dollar prize in Ottawa last week and would like to share with you an overview of their award winning program:

  • Northern Compass is a skilled team of educators, students and community members from across the North.
  • The team includes representation from a program that has been supported by the GNWT over the years, the Northern Youth Abroad program.
  • Northern Compass provides northern youth with tailored support and tools that will allow them to overcome the barriers that they may face when transitioning from high school to post-secondary education.
    • They aim to: “Dramatically increase achievement amongst Northerners pursuing their education and career goals after high school, enabling them to become full participants in their communities and beyond”.
    • The project motivates youth to graduate high school and make informed decisions about their future. It also provides support and increased access to training and programs that allow northern youth to pursue and achieve their goals.

Thank you to their nominator, The Honourable David Joanasie, Minister of Education, Minister of Culture and Heritage, Minister of Languages, Legislative Assembly of Nunavut.

I would like to congratulate the Team Leaders, Jim Snider, Karen Aglukark, Lois Philipp, Rebecca Bisson who have put in so much time providing accessible and relevant resources with information on funding, housing, budgeting and other areas related to our northern student’s success.

The Dehcho: River Journeys project was also a recipient of an Arctic Inspiration Award.  This project will:

  • Travel on the Mackenzie River, from the Dehcho to the Delta, and will bridge the past and the present, offering a multi-media experience that explores how the past 100 years have transformed the River.
  • Students will collaborate on two short films, one based on archival materials and the other chronicling a modern-day journey on the river with present-day Elders. The Elders will describe and explain the changes they have seen throughout their lives.
  • Through this project, the development of an interactive and educational online experience will allow students to view the films and then use their new-found knowledge to resolve real-life environmental issues that plague the Mackenzie watershed today.

Thank you to their nominator, Dr. Frank Tester, Professor at University of British Columbia School of Social Work.

Team Members includes: Dr. Gordon Christie, Alison de Pelham, Brian Jaffray, Terry Jaffray, Martina Norwegian, Brenda Parlee, Daniel Séguin, Sharon Snowshoe. Thank you for your work on this project and congratulations on your achievement.


Thank you, Mr. Speaker.