Organizers behind exchange deserve recognition too


I read the article “An exchange of ideas” (April 19) yesterday and was surprised to see how much was printed in the paper. The two-page coverage of the exchange brings much pride to the participating members and the community.

I also noticed that a couple of names were not mentioned. If it were not for Rob Strutz and Leslie Qamaniq, the events in Pond Inlet would never have come about.

Rob Strutz was the initiator for the exchange in Pond Inlet and persuaded me to undertake the cause. It is to Rob that the greatest degree of recognition should be given. He spearheaded fundraising, often seeking out financial assistance for the exchange from individual companies on his own initiative so that the students would not have to work so hard at raising funds on their own time. Rob was equally responsible for the detailed planning and execution of the exchange program.

If it weren’t for Leslie Qamaniq, Rob and I would never have known about the Community Initiatives Program, which allowed us to actually achieve our financial goals for the exchange. Rob ensured that this application was completed and delivered. Leslie also spent numerous hours of her time putting together a cultural performance that will be performed by the Pond Inlet exchange students in Guelph. This program, which includes Inuit games, throat and ayaya singing, drum dancing and interpretive sketch, vividly displays Inuit culture and accentuates the students’ roles as ambassadors for our community.

Patrick McDermott
Teacher, Nasivvik High School
Pond Inlet

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