Space for queer Inuit youth in Ottawa returns for new sessions
Tungasuvvingat Inuit’s Arsaniq drop-in space open for 2 January sessions
A new drop-in program for queer Inuit youth in Ottawa is returning for new sessions this month.
Arsaniq is a program by Ontario-based organization Tungasuvvingat Inuit designed for youth who identify as 2SLGBTQ+. The 2S stands for “two-spirit,” a term that’s specific to queer Indigenous identities.
Tungasuvvingat Inuit announced the return of the program Jan. 11 on its Twitter page.
The first session will take place on Jan. 20 for people ages 12 to 18 years old, and on Jan. 27 for participants 19 to 25 years old. Sessions run from 3 to 5 p.m.
The space focuses on social activities, positive mental health, skill-building and connecting youth to resources and other 2SLGBTQ+ people in the community, the organization said.
“This drop in at Tungasuvvingat Inuit is a place to be yourself, and re-create this part of our society, where queer identities are not only accepted, but celebrated,” said program creator Mikka Komaksiutksak.
“Every Inuk should feel comfortable in their identity, regardless of sexual orientation.”
The new sessions will take place at 1071 Richmond Rd. in Ottawa. Snacks and bus tickets will be provided to attendees.
People interested in registering or learning more information about the program can email mkomaksiutiks
Tungasuvvingat Inuit spokesperson Joël Lamoureux said the organization plans to continue the program into the new year.
The program, which Tungasuvvingat Inuit says is the first of its kind catering to queer, urban Inuit youth, had its grand opening in November with cultural activities and a country food feast.
Program organizer Jennifer Chafe told Nunatsiaq News the space is meant to serve as a place “where people can just be themselves.”