McGill North and the Institut Nordique du Québec held the Second Northern Research Day hosted at the McGill Faculty Club and Conference Centre in Montreal on January 24th, 2018. The purpose of the event was to promote exchanges and strengthen links between students, researchers, and research partners from different fields all working in the North.
The poster I prepared for the event is shown below:
With Prof. Mylene Riva (McGill University) and Prof. Christopher Fletcher (Université Laval), I will be presenting the ways in which the community component of Qanuilirpitaa? 2017 Nunavik Health Survey integrated Inuit perspectives to conceptualize and measure health and well-being for northern communities. The presentation will take place at the Arctic Change 2017 conference on Friday, December 15th in Quebec City. Hope to see you there!
Abstract: As part of Qanuilirpitaa? 2017 Nunavik Health Survey (hereafter Q2017) a ‘community component’ was developed to describe community conditions that are relevant for the health of Nunavimmiut from a lived Inuit perspective so that community-level strengths and challenges may be addressed effectively and people may live well together now and in the future. This presentation will address the data collection process of the community component, mostly realized between August and October 2017, when the Amundsen icebreaker was sailing to all communities in the region for data collection of Q2017. It also presents ways in which results will be returned to communities and to the region. In September 2016, 1.5-day workshops were conducted in two of the 14 communities in Nunavik, with the objective to conceptualize community conditions important for the health and well-being of Nunavimmiut and to develop relevant indicators of social and community conditions to be included in the survey. From the analysis of the workshop discussions, 10 main themes, or dimensions of community conditions, emerged: family, community relationships, healing, land, identity, food, local and regional development, education and skills, socioeconomic conditions, and safety and security. Together with the concepts of inuqatigitsiarniq (the ties that bind people together), piusiq (way of life or ‘core of things’, referring to both the strengths and values of the community), and other health and wellness concepts, these themes delineate the conceptual framework of the Community Component of Q2017. The measurement and description of the 10 dimensions of community conditions is realized by combining four different sources of data: individual responses collected from questionnaires answered by Q2017 participants; in-depth interviews with 3 to 6 key informants in each community to better understand locally relevant dimensions of community conditions; community-level socioeconomic and health data retrieved from administrative databases; and a mapping of locally available resources addressing the 10 themes. Data from interviews, mapping of community resources, and quantitative information characterizing communities, as well as historical and archival materials, will be analyzed, interpreted and integrated to create community portraits for each of the 14 communities. This will be undertaken in collaboration with the communities so that recommendations best reflect their concerns and experiences. The ultimate outcome of the Community Component is to identify ways that local factors that contribute to community health can be recognized and enhanced while also identifying areas where new programming and policy can be directed. The analysis and synthesis of the multiple sources of data will be undertaken with this pragmatic outcome in mind.
With team members Marie Baron and Marie-Claude Lyonnais, we have returned from Nunavik after conducting primary data collection for the community component of Qanuilirpitaa? the 2017 Nunavik Health Survey. The team travelled to the 14 communities of Nunavik between August 19th and October 5th aboard the Canadian research icebreaker CCGS Amundsen.
The goals of the data collection for the community component were to:
identify and characterize community health resources in each village through short structured interviews with every resource;
understand how Nunavimmiut view and understand community health in their communities through in depth semi-structured/conversational interviews; and
geo-locate community health resources in each community using a GPS, and take photos of each resource. This data will be used to display resources on an interactive map.
The idea for the community component comes from the region itself, as one of Nunavimmiut’s priorities for the follow-up of the Nunavik Health Survey was to consider health at the community scale, moving away from the focus on individual health and well-being.
We are now in the process of analyzing the data, and aim to present results to the communities as they become available.
Another version of this post was published online here.
In Kangiqsujuaq, Nunavik last month, I was carrying out pre-fieldwork activities for the community component of Qanuilirpitaa, the 2017 Nunavik Inuit Health Survey. Qanuilirpitaa will survey 2000 individuals between August to October 2017 in all 14 communities of Nunavik to measure mental, physical, and spiritual health and well-being.
As part of the community component of Qanuilirpitaa, our team is conducting 70-90 in-depth conversational interviews with a diversity of community members to understand local perspectives on what makes their communities healthy and well. Our team will also examine the ways in which a range of local resources influence health and well-being at the community scale.
For Inuit in Nunavik, going out on the land can be an important part of being healthy and well. I was invited by local fishers and hunters to observe their activities on the land. Here are a few photos from the field.
While in Kangiqsujuaq (aka Wakeham Bay), Nunavik for pre-fieldwork, I was invited to celebrate National Aboriginal Day (recently renamed National Indigenous Peoples Day). The community gathered for a celebratory feast organized by the municipal government. Locals who prepared food were entered into a draw for a chance to win one of many prizes. Together under the longest sun of the year, we feasted upon caribou, arctic char and mussels. Other celebrations included the sharing of stories by elders over the radio, informing younger generations of traditional ways of life.
In light of the celebrations, here are a few related links: