Earth Day Film Festival brings Inuit message about climate change

A film festival told from an Indigenous perspective is coming to the community to educate on the topic of environmental awareness

Earth Day is coming and with it a Film Festival to increase awareness about climate change and global warming. The United Church will be hosting this year’s Earth Day Film Festival and it promises to incite thought provoking conversation through its feature film “Inuit Knowledge and Climate Change.”

The film was created by Nanavut-based director Zacharias Kanuk (Atanarjuat The Fast Runner) and researcher and filmmaker Dr. Ian Mauro (Seeds of Change.)

The film will examine the social and ecological impacts of a warming Arctic through the eyes of the elders and hunters of the Inuit culture. The documentary is also the first ever to be done completely in the Inuktitut language, which gives the viewer the “on the land” experience that is completely authentic and unforgettable. The film offers a rare opportunity to experience Inuit culture while being informed of their expertise on environmental change from an Indigenous platform.

“Exploring centuries of Inuit knowledge, which allows the viewer to learn about climate change first-hand from Arctic residents themselves. The film portrays Inuit as experts regarding their land and wildlife and makes it clear that climate change is a human rights issue affecting this ingenious Indigenous culture. Hear stories about Arctic melting and how Inuit believe that human and animal intelligence are key to adaptability and survival in a warming world,” said a press release statement.

“The film festival will be a chance to bring people together to share the successes and challenges of climate change with one another,” said film festival organizer Betty Rajotte.

Rajotte and a group of others organized the event as a nod to Earth Day, which started out in the 70s to celebrate Earth itself and environmental protection.

“Nature is full of wonder and hope — we’re all connected and it’s important to celebrate and look after one another,” she said.

The film presentation was organized and made possible by The Miami Streamkeepers, The Watershed Coalition, Save Sasquatch Park, and the Invasive Plant Council.

Refreshments will be available before the start of the film, along with an array of environmental literature provided by the Agassiz Library.

Professor Erica Grimm, PhD, from the School of Arts and Media at Trinity Western University will also be giving a talk at the event.

Admission is by donation at the Agassiz United Church on Friday Apr. 21 at 7 p.m.

Come prepared for a cultural, environmental, and intellectually engaging experience. It will be great for film buffs, or just a night out.

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