Based out of the May Hakongak Community Library and Cultural Centre in Cambridge Bay, Nunavut, the Pitquhirnikkut Ilihautiniq/Kitikmeot Heritage Society is a leader for culture and heritage in Nunavut. Founded in 1996, we are guided by an Inuinnaq Executive Director and Inuinnait Board, and are among the territory’s longest established heritage organizations. With over 24 years of experience in cultural research and program delivery, we have earned the support and trust of our community, and built solid partnerships and recognition at national and international levels.
We address projects of critical importance to the revival of Inuit culture, language and history. We focus on the critical needs of Inuinnait—a distinct regional group of Inuit living in the Central Canadian Arctic. The Inuinnaqtun language—the foundation of Inuinnait culture—has less than 600 fluent speakers remaining. By most estimates, it is a language that will be extinct in less than two generations. The disappearance of Inuinnaqtun precipitates the loss of culturally unique knowledge, relationships and engagements with the world.
Faced with an urgent timeline, we have made an unwavering commitment to support the
renewal of Inuinnait culture and the revitalization of Inuinnaqtun.
means ‘learning through culture’ in Inuinnaqtun.
To preserve and renew Inuinnait knowledge, language and culture for the benefit of all Inuit.
To concentrate and connect the resources, expertise and technology critical to Inuinnait cultural and linguistic survival.
Flexibility and Innovation
Our priorities are based on the urgent needs facing our cultural communities today.
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We are leading a coordinated and transformational effort to reverse the loss of Inuinnaqtun in our communities.
We are providing daily opportunities for community members to consult Elders on traditional knowledge, and to be mentored in traditional skills.
We are developing new digital tools to facilitate Inuinnait access, ownership and usability of our traditional knowledge.
We are combining oral history and archaeological research to build a better understanding of the Inuinnait past.
BUILDING FOR A
We are creating a solid foundation through which to meet our goals, deliver core activities and programming, and ensure long-term viability and success.