Tshikapisk Foundation
The mission of the Tshikapisk Foundation
Tshikapisk was created in 1997 by a group of Innu concerned with the disruptive consequences that the sudden change from a life based on the country (Nutshimit) to one based on permanent settlement in villages brought to the Innu. The strategy envisioned to address the ensuing social difficulties involves building a self-supporting economy based in the country, and which utilizes and celebrates Innu knowledge and skills. In order to accomplish its mission Tshikapisk promotes the exploration of revenue generating activities both to provide employment to Nutshimiu Innut (country Innu) and to pay for experiential learning programs for Innu youth who had become increasingly disconnected from life on the land.

The foundation has explored two kinds of activities that involve Nutshimiu Innut and generate revenues: eco-tourism and research assistance for disciplines that require field-work in Labrador.

Through a number of experiences, the Foundation has gained a better appreciation of the potential benefits that appropriately designed research may have beyond constituting a possible source of income for Nutshimiu Innut. Consequently, and in association with Memorial University's Canada Research Chair in Aboriginal Studies, we are now seeking to strengthen our capacity both to operate as liaison between the Innu communities and external researchers and to design our own research projects.

The Foundation seeks three main objectives with this new initiative:
a)Generate local research expertise thoroughly grounded in Innu values and concerns;
b)Help university-based and other non-Innu researchers shape research agendas that are relevant to the Innu communities;
c)Raise awareness among community members of the relevant contribution that appropriately designed research can make to address challenges we face.

The Foundation Background

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