The Manitoba Urban Inuit Association (MUIA) was founded in 2008 in order to promote and enhance individual and community quality of life for Inuit living in Manitoba by sustaining the rich and vibrant practices to our health, our environment and our economy.
Over time, we hope to accomplish this by providing:
- Culturally sensitive programs, activities and services for students and residents;
- Programs with traditional Inuit values to meet the needs of Inuit newcomers;
- Education programs designed to sustain Inuit culture, language and health.
Our long term mission is to eventually build a centre where Inuit can meet, develop and deliver services in consort with other agencies to meet the needs of urban Inuit. The ideal location for a centre is between Polo Park and Burnell and Portage, because of the number of Inuit who live and study in this area of Winnipeg.
Why was MUIA Started
The short answer is "need".
The majority of Inuit in Manitoba are from just north of the Manitoba border in Nunavut's Kivalliq region, although Inuit come from as far away as Labrador in the east and Inuvik in the west.
Inuit come to Winnipeg for health care, school, to visit relatives, study or employment reasons. When we get there, there are no supports specifically for Inuit. Inuit live all over the city and it is difficult for us to find one another and connect - an important cultural need for people from small or northern communities now living in isolation in the city.
Inuit culture is unique in Canada - and unique within the Indigenous population. Inuit need culturally specific support in the areas of housing, education and culturally developed programming.
Young Inuit living in Winnipeg need opportunities to meet other Inuit youth to share and learn language and other culturally related knowledge. MUIA believes stewarding opportunities for these interactions allow our youth to develop a positive identity as Inuit and for a strong self-sustaining future.
MUIA also supports Inuit living in other urban centres in Manitoba although the majority of Inuit are known to be in Winnipeg. If you are Inuk seeking support or information from MUIA, please contact us.