Food Security Initiatives across the Northwest Territories

Regions: Inuvialuit Settlement Region, Sahtu Settlement Area, North Slave Region, Qikiqtaaluk Region

Tags: social sciences, climate change, food security

Principal Investigator: Skinner, Kelly (5)
Licence Number: 16697
Organization: University of Waterloo
Licensed Year(s): 2021 2020
Issued: Feb 18, 2020
Project Team: Mylene Ratelle, Deborah Simmons, Brian Laird, Andrew Spring, Jennifer Fresque-Baxter, Gina Bayha, Julian MacLean, Melaine Simba, John B. Zoe, Sonia Wesche, Warren Dodd, Myriam Fillion, Tiff-Annie Kenny, Sonja Ostertag, Alex Latta

Objective(s): To address priorities and inform both climate change and food security action and support-structures at local, regional, and territorial scales.

Project Description: This licence has been issued for the scientific research application No.4680.

This research aims to learn from and enhance community capacity to address priorities and inform both climate change and food security action and support-structures at local, regional, and territorial scales.

This research will examine questions related to food security and climate change across the four cross-cutting themes: traditional knowledge; governance; youth; and sex and gender using a case study approach. The research approach will be grounded in Participatory Action Research and will work in four regions of the NWT (Inuvialuit, Sahtu, Tlicho, and Dehcho). These case studies were chosen based on existing researcher-community relationships and the alignment of community needs with the project. Researchers and community members will work together on specific actions and initiatives in each community, based on needs and opportunities identified by the community to strengthen the local food system. These include activities around impacts of road infrastructure; food processing; food storage and distribution; and small-scale agriculture. Methods to approach the research will include a combination of Indigenous methods (such as storytelling, participatory mapping, on the land camps and talking circles) as well as more traditional qualitative and quantitative (focus groups, interviews, workshops, food costing surveys). Opportunities for cross-learning and scaled-up knowledge transfer will occur throughout the process, and the project team (researchers, community representatives, and regional representatives) will have two in-person meetings to facilitate knowledge exchange. This is a dynamic project, based on the needs and interests of the communities. As such, the methodology will evolve over time.

The research team provided the partners with regular phone/email updates of the research progress. Additionally, the team participate frequently in local meetings (e.g., t Sahtú Environmental Research and Monitoring Forum; Hotii Ts'eeda meetings, etc.), providing additional opportunities to liaise with other researchers, local organizations and community leaders. Further, the team will distribute factsheets and brochures describing the project, which are written in plain language. To stay in contact with interested community members, local radio are visited during each of the visits and postcards are sent to participants and project’s friends once a year. Finally, similar to the other projects, the research team will distribute a quarterly newsletter to community partners, local coordinators, researchers working in the same regions, and government representatives.

The fieldwork for this study will be conducted from February 18, 2020 to December 31, 2020.