Sarah is a very talented seamstress, mother of four and an up-and-coming entrepreneur. She has been showcased as a seamstress to represent Nunavik both nationally and internationally. Her first project, which garnered international attention, was with the second edition of the Canada Goose Project Atigi where she was a participating designer of a one-of-a-kind atigik.
Sarah was then selected to be the Nunavik representative for the Red Amauti Project where she was to design a Nunavik style amautik to raise awareness and honour MMIWG. She also designs parkas for local organizations.
When Sarah is not busy sewing, she is busy planning her own upcoming business. She is currently in the development phase of opening a coffee house in Inukjuak. This will be the first of its kind in her community, which is set to open sometime this year. We wish her the best of luck in her endeavours.
Community Project Funding Program
Saturviit has a funding program available up to $3000 to each Nunavik community, including Inuit communities in Southern Quebec. The actions of the community projects should be designed to make women’s lives better; be culturally relevant raise awareness, promote equality between women and men, encourage healthy lifestyles or other positive actions.
Once an essential tool for survival, providing heat and a source of light in the long, dark, arctic winters, today, qulliit are lit at special events, opening ceremonies and personal days of significance. International Inuit Day is a perfect time to tend to my qulliq and think about what it means to be Inuk. To reflect upon our past, present, and future. As I reach for my little qulliq, I notice its weight and how it is cold to the touch, to the point where it sends shivers down my spine. I remember sivullivinivut (our ancestors), who lived in one of the harshest climates on Earth. They endured pain and suffering by the hands of government officials, the church, the police, and the Hudson Bay company’s trading posts, to name a few. Parts of our history are very dark, cold, and heavy—just like my qulliq. But there is so much more to us that we refuse to let that define us. To light the qulliq, we use maniq, a blend of hand-picked arctic cotton and moss, harvested from the Nuna (land) in the summer months. We often use vegetable oil as an alternative to the seal oil that was traditionally used to fuel our lamps. These elements remind me of the work we do daily in our communities to ensure the safety of our people. From educators, healthcare workers, labourers, managers, municipal workers, regional employees, and beyond, we were forced into a new way of life. But we have adapted and continue to learn and grow. We have so much to be proud of; upigusuutitsaqarqugut as we say in Inuktitut. We have come such a long way in such a short period of time. Once you light the qulliq, you notice the mesmerizing flames, at once equally beautiful as warm and bright. Inuit are all of these things and more. From a feast of niqituinnaq (or country food) on the floor and the laughter we share, to the competitive spirit we encompass and our artistic talents, our sense of community is woven into all that we do. As well, the traditional knowledge we pass down, our language, perseverance, our beautiful markings on our body that we are reviving, our clothing, our stories, our elders, and our land—we have so much beauty, all around us to celebrate on International Inuit Day. Like the qulliq whose flames extinguish if you do not tend to it, we need to remember to take care of ourselves and each other. Be kind to one another, lift each other up, and offer love, support and understanding. We can thrive and prosper, continuing to adapt and grow. We will be the light and warmth within our communities—for ourselves today and for our children and our grandchildren of tomorrow.