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Upcoming Girls Hockey Friendship Game in Ottawa – Let’s welcome the Nunavik Nordiks in a most memorable way!

Version française de ce texte.

Please mark Wednesday, March 21 @ 7:15PM in your calendars!! At that precise moment the girls midget hockey team from Nunavik will be jumping on the ice of the Bell’s Sensplex to face the Nepean Wildcats in a friendship game!! The 16 young ladies, aged 15 to 18, are participating in the Nunavik Youth Hockey Development Program (NYHDP), championed by former NHL player Joé Juneau. The NYHDP being meant to encourage young Inuit to pursue their education while participating in hockey, education and hockey are simply inseparable. Therefore, each and everyone of these girls has wan her place on the Nordiks’ team because of her academic performance! The program has been in place since 2005 and is making a huge difference in all Nunavik communities where it has been implemented.

To recognize and celebrate the efforts of the whole Nordiks team, a group of passionate individuals is uniting their efforts in the hope of offering our visiting players a hockey experience they will never forget. If you haven’t seen the heart warming Budweiser Canada Superbowl Flash Fans video yet, have a look to get a feel for what we have in mind! More precisely, we’d like to :

  • pack the Sensplex full of supporters;
  • get money and equipment donations including prowrap (keeps the girls hair from slipping out of their helmets);
  • create a gift basket to raffle off on game day;
  • offer other activities to Nordiks players, such as campus tours, a tour of Scotiabank Place, a meet and greet with leading women in sport, etc.

If you’ve got a great idea, we’d love to hear about it! The Ottawa #Friendshipgame website has just been set up to provide further details and keep you posted on our progress. The RSVP & Contact Us also provides an easy way for you to contact us and to let us know of your intent to join your efforts to ours.

If you’re on Facebook, you can also let us know that you’re planning on attending by joining the Facebook Friendship Game event :

Thanks for your interest and support in making this friendship game a memorable event!

Since I’ve had the opportunity to spend a few days in Kuujjuaq in July 2009, I thought I would take this opportunity to help “Southerners” get a better feel for the hometown of some of these young ladies. So, here are a few photographs I brought back from my stay.

Kuujjuaq, is the largest community and the administrative center of Nunavik (Northern Quebec) with over 2200 inhabitants. It is located about 48km upstream from Ungava Bay along the Koksoak river.

Koksoak river a few kilometers downstream from Kuujjuaq

A view of Kuujjuaq & the Koksoak river at sunset time.

View of Kuujjuaq and the Koksoak River

More general views of the environment surrounding Kuujjuaq.

Boreal forest on the outskirts of Kuujjuaq

Panoramic view of Kuujjuaq

Here’s Kuujjuaq’s forum where the girls practice & play hockey.

Location of Kuujjuaq's forum.

Kuujjuaq's Forum

Kuujjuaq's forum.

Rebuilding an inuksuk on a small hill behind Kuujjuaq.

Rebuilding an inuksuk

The final touches to the inuksuk.

The newly completed inuksuk.

Yes! Yes! Kuujjuaq has a beach!

Children playing on the beach in Kuujjuaq

Thanks again and hoping to see you on March 21st so that we can all cheer the Nordiks and the Wildcats!
France Rivet

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