$2M in community food programs announced by NTI, Nunavut government

Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. President Aluki Kotierk, seen here, and Nunavut Premier Joe Savikataaq announced on Friday, April 3, over $2 million in funding for community food programs for children and elders in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The funds will be given directly to hamlets to deliver programming that fits each community’s needs. See our story later at (Photo by Meagan Deuling)

Plenty of swag for CamBay bingo players

Wayne Gregory and Valter Botelho-Resendes stand next to a table laden with prizes they later handed out to lucky bingo players on Saturday, March 28, in Cambridge Bay. The community-wide bingo, sponsored by the hamlet, was promoted as a stay-at-home, social distancing affair. Another bingo is scheduled for this coming Saturday evening. (Photo courtesy of the Hamlet of Cambridge Bay)

Iqaluit’s post office offers drive-thru for parcels

Cars line up at Iqaluit’s new drive-thru pick-up for Canada Post parcels at 1057 Mivvik St. The post office has introduced the new service, when weather permits, to help with physical distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Drivers stop their vehicles at the barricades, park and shut off the ignition. A postal clerk then comes to the window and takes their delivery notice cards. “Stay warm in your vehicle,” says a post office announcement. “The postal clerk will collect your parcels from the post office and place them on a table near your vehicle. Take your parcels and load them into your vehicle. Follow the barricades out of the parking lot. Please drive carefully—this is a residential area!” (Submitted photo)

Public health emergency extended in Nunavut, health minister says

George Hickes, Nunavut’s health minister, has extended the territory’s public health emergency until April 16. Hickes first declared the public health emergency on March 18. There are still no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Nunavut. Hickes also cautioned Nunavummiut against wearing masks to prevent the spread of COVID-19. “We want to make sure that our health-care workers have all the personal protective equipment that they need to do their jobs and help take care of us. People using masks for day to day … is unnecessary and, in fact, could increase the level of risk,” Hickes said. (Photo by Emma Tranter)

Nunavut residents in isolation offered mental health advice

Nunavut’s chief public health officer, Michael Patterson, offered some mental health tips to residents who are isolated because of COVID-19 and live alone on Wednesday, April 1. Regular phone calls can help so you have “voice contact,” he said. Short walks with friends are “tolerable,” as long as you’re six feet apart. This expands the definition of a household, Patterson said, but the time together will protect other aspects of well-being. “We’re not doing anybody any favours if we deal with COVID-19 but cause a lot of other difficulties,” he said. Nunavut has no confirmed cases of COVID-19. Eighty-five people have been tested and found to be negative, while 205 people are waiting for test results or have symptoms, or both, and must self-isolate for 14 days or until they’re cleared by the Government of Nunavut. (Photo by Meagan Deuling)