(02 April 2013) – The latest edition of the International Newsletter for Sustainable Local Development focuses on cooperatives and Inuit communities in Canada. It shows that the fundamental spirit of cooperatives is perfectly suited to indigenous communities’ mentality.
The Canadian Arctic is a vast polar territory that stretches from the Atlantic right across to Alaska; it is the home of the Inuit, who have lived a nomadic existence for many thousands of years, living essentially from their fishing and hunting activities.
Since the 1950s, the development of services has accentuated and accelerated change within these communities, and led to the creation of villages. The need was born to create businesses which were spontaneously built as cooperatives.
Beyond the huge challenges facing Inuits (climate change, loss of traditional culture, problems caused by the mining industry…), these cooperatives are genuine local development tools, in close link with the ancestral community spirit of the people.