By Kelly Nochasak McLean
July 15-17th, kANGIDLUASUk Summer Student Program staff Ocean Lane and I travelled to the Torngat Mountains Base Camp and Research Station to help Parks Canada welcome the 2014 Students On Ice Arctic Expedition to Nunatsiavut, and the Torngat Mountains National Park (TMNP).
Although pack ice in the harbour shortened the intended Students On Ice (SOI) experience in the Torngat Mountains, the students were able to spend one day on shore filled with tours, hikes, beach picnics, Elder storytelling, and music. It was a spectacular sunny day, with the Nain brass band re-energizing Inuit tradition and Moravian custom for a unique welcome to shore as the students arrived by zodiac.
The students were impressed with the extraordinary landscape of the Torngat Mountains, and shared their excited and curious energy throughout the day. As the students were from all international reaches of the globe, it was exciting to welcome them to our corner of the north, and share Nunatsiavut Inuit lands and history with them.
It was particularly special for us to welcome Nunatsiavut SOI participants Brianna Brown, Taylor Jacque and Chaim Andersen, and then send them off to complete the rest of their Arctic voyage to Greenland! The day ended with a beautiful evening of music and entertainment for everyone on-board the ship.
Ocean and I were very grateful for the opportunity to assist TMNP with this initiative, and to represent the kANGIDLUASUk Student Program. It was wonderful to see our program’s mandate resonate with so many international youth, and we were amazed to see so many youth passionate about our northern lands.