Karah Kushnir, an elementary teacher at Qaqqalik School took the initiative to open up a youth drop-in centre at the Kimmirut’s Wellness Centre on Tues. Nov. 26.

Her goal is to provide a warm, safe and comfortable space for youth to hang out during the cold winter months.

Youth hang out at Wellness Centre in Kimmirut. Top left to right: Bee Lyta Shautie Onalik Nujaleah Kolola. Bottom left to right: Qavavao Simeonie Michael Killiktee Mosha Michael. photo courtesy by Karah Kushnir

On its opening day, 12 youths showed up at the small centre.

They had spaghetti with meat sauce and clementines. The following Tuesday, the youth made their own tortilla wraps. Kushnir is using funding she received from Taking It Global to purchase the food.

Besides the space and food, the teacher is providing youth with board games and art activities. In the future, depending on funding, she hope to get a t.v. or even a game console.

The drop-in is open for free to all youth, who are between 11 to 17 years of age. It is open every Tuesday from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

In 2020, Kushnir wants to expand the drop-in to include adults and create life skill workshops. She hopes to have a drop-in on Fridays evenings for 18-24 aged adults. On Sundays, ideally around noon, she wants to conduct workshops focusing on resume writing and interviewing skills.

“I’m happy there’s a space. I’m happy people are really into this idea and they want to support me,” said Kushnir.

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