Giving Tuesday

The Tuesday following Black Friday is increasingly known as Giving Tuesday, a day to remind everyone of the importance of philanthropy right on the heels of consumerist frenzy. As a registered charity that depends largely on donations we definitely support that awareness, but if we are to expect people to open their wallets for our sake it would help if people knew where their money was going. To do so it’s important to know where we came from, and where we are going.

Several years ago our organization operated on a minuscule budget that went almost entirely to food and utility costs. Every single day, volunteers would prepare and serve a daily meal to the public. A few super-volunteers were able to be there five or more days a week and provide the organizational stability necessary to keep the place running smoothly. However, this eventually proved unsustainable, as some of these volunteers moved on and replacements proved difficult to find. The budget barely allowed for a part-time staff, but even this was not enough to keep up with the multitude of daily tasks. Burn-out among volunteers and board members was intense.

Eventually, a solution was found: There is no shortage of public funding for training and education, so the daily meals became a skills-building exercise for trainees directed by professional chefs. With a professional backbone, we noticed immediate benefits: there was less volunteer burn-out, more stability in facility maintenance and operation, and the quality of our meals increased so much that our daily visitors surged.

However, funding arrangements are often very specific and never quite cover anything. There is a whole range of costs that fall outside of of them, including ballooning expenses for food and maintenance. But more importantly, funding that is not restricted to a specific set of outcomes can be set aside and used towards our future aspirations.

There are many organizations that we emulate, including many in Nunavut such as Rankin Inlet’s Pulaarvik Kablu Friendship Centre or the Cambridge Bay Community Wellness Centre, but the model we have found is the best fit for us is that of the Community Food Centre (CFC). This concept has been developed by Community Food Centres Canada and currently there exist ten officially designated CFCs in the country. We aim to be the eleventh.

What it means to be a CFC varies tremendously, and it will vary even more if we are to become the first in Northern Canada, but at its heart it bridges the very obvious need among many for better food access with the less obvious solution of personal empowerment, reduced isolation and increased advocacy on issues affecting the community. Our aim is to turn our Centre from a place of need to that of pride for the entire community.

If you are ever curious about who we are and what we hope to achieve, do not hesitate to stop in for a chat (bldg 655) or contact our ED at Without the community’s awareness and support, we can go nowhere. You can help us in a multitude of ways, by donating, volunteering, or simply spreading the message. Thank you for your support.

Chef Manager

The Qajuqturvik Food Centre (QFC) seeks a Chef Manager for its facility in the heart of Iqaluit as it transitions into Nunavut’s first Community Food Centre, in partnership with Community Food Centres Canada (CFCC). This is a full-time position with a competitive salary. The QFC is a registered charity that conducts varied programming with the aim of addressing the causes and effects of food insecurity on Iqalummiut and the community of Iqaluit as a whole. One branch of this is the Inclusion Café, a social enterprise that trains underemployed community members to work in commercial kitchens to meet a large demand in the private sector.

The Chef Manager reports to the Executive Director and is responsible for:

  • developing programming that reflects the philosophy of Community Food Centres Canada, in assistance with the Executive Director and Development Manager;
  • establishing a healthy menu for daily meals, and cooking when necessary;
  • communicating with catering clients, preparing invoices and preparing meals by request;
  • managing inventory, authorizing food orders;
  • ensuring that health and safety protocols are followed;
  • hiring staff and program participants, in coordination with the Executive Director and Board of Directors Hiring Committee;
  • interacting with guests, cleaning, directing volunteers and other staff, and ensuring an environment that is dignified and communal;
  • serving as an ambassador for Qajuqturvik Food Centre’s mission and philosophy within the community; and
  • preparing course materials and implementing training and other programming.

Other duties will be assigned by the board of directors as the mission and scope of the QFC continues to evolve.

The ideal candidate will have a combination of the following:

  • the ability to work in a fast-paced, high-volume commercial kitchen, and to engage comfortably and appropriately with volunteers and guests of the free daily meal;
  • experience working with vulnerable populations, including conflict resolution and de-escalation;
  • Red Seal Chef certification or a similar combination of education and experience;
  • knowledge and interest in further understanding Nunavut (past and present) and Inuit culture; and
  • experience teaching/instructing culinary courses.

This position is subject to a criminal record check, a child abuse register check and proof of education. Candidates must currently live in or be willing to relocate to Iqaluit, and only applicants already eligible to work in Canada will be considered. To better serve our clientele, preference will be given to Inuit applicants. Fluency in Inuktitut is an asset.

Salary: $70,000 + $15,000 Northern Allowance

To apply, please submit a letter and resume to Please do not hesitate to inquire in advance if you have any questions or concerns about the position. Only those candidates being considered will be contacted.

Open until filled

Come to our AGM!


The Qajuqturvik Food Centre (QFC, formerly Qayuqtuvik Society) has been an integral component to the lives of Iqaluit’s most food insecure individuals for as long as most Iqalummiut can remember. While there have been multiple locations over the years, our basic mission has always been to provide a daily meal without judgement. For the past decade we have operated out of Building 655 next to the Anglican Cathedral, a facility that was custom-built for our needs and which has become a recognizable fixture in the community.

The generosity and volunteer effort of community members have been fundamental to the QFC’s ability to serve the community, both past and present. In recent years, the limits of a purely volunteer approach have become clear, so thanks to the efforts of Nunavummi Disabilities Makinnasuaqtiit Society (NDMS) Inclusion Café was formed, a social enterprise that dramatically increased both the quality and the quantity of food we could produce, and which supports in-demand work training and food skills development in the community. We are proud of our efforts and are driven by a desire to do more in our community. The daily meal will always continue, but we would like to expand to address some of the root causes of food insecurity faced by our guests. The additional programming we have developed over the years has supported community members, but has been limited by volunteer capacity and strained resources.

After years of fundraising efforts we have at last found ourselves in a position to hire dedicated operational staff, and we are excited about what we might accomplish in the future. With this new potential, the Board of Directors’ role is about to experience a fundamental shift from operations to strategy and oversight. With our newfound staffing situation, we are now seeking nominations to the board from those who may not have had the time to commit in the past. We are particularly in need of those whose background, professional or otherwise, affords them a strong insight into the issues contributing to food insecurity and their potential solutions.

We will be holding our Annual General Meeting on May 22nd where we will be electing our board of directors for the coming year. We invite not only those who are interested in becoming potential members but anyone who is interested to know more about our aspirations. We encourage you to share this invitation with anyone you feel might help us in our mission.

Aviva Community Fund – Vote for us!

The Qajuqturvik Food Centre has made it to the next round of eligibility with the Aviva Community Fund. We are emailing our entire contact list because we need your help to receive this funding! Please follow the link to vote for us and share among your own networks so that we can reach as many people as possible!

The Centre applied for this funding so that we may stabilize the vital food service role we fill in the community. We serve a healthy meal to around 80-100 people daily and our community members rely on us. Our current lack of funding makes the Qajuqturvik Food Centre unsustainable. If we receive this funding, securing our meal service feeds into our future ambitions of expanding on our ability to connect with and serve the people of Iqaluit. Help us promote positive change in Iqaluit – this would be the first Aviva Project in Nunavut!

Please vote by…

  1. Visiting the Aviva Community Fund website
  2. Registering to vote
  3. Validating your registration with the email Aviva sends you
  4. Voting! Find the “Iqaluit Food Centre and Inclusion Café” located in Iqaluit, Nunavut. Everyone has 18 votes they can conveniently use at one time or before October 19th.

Thank you sincerely!

In the News: Nunavut capital’s soup kitchen struggles to meet local demand

In a recent article in Nunatsiaq News, Beth Brown brings attention to Qajuqturvik Food Centre’s struggle to continue its work following the discontinuation of funding for Inclusion Cafe, a program that provided jobs and training to people who face employment barriers, which in turn benefited operations at Qajuqturvik Food Centre.

“The quality of our meals will continue but we are going to have a lot of operational difficulty in the coming year because we have to go back to a more volunteer based delivery of our meals, which was the case for many years up until last year,” Thorhaug said.

Facing a long winter with increased demand and rising prices, the Qajuqturvik Food Centre is seeking donations and volunteer support to continue its meal service.

Read the full article here.

Our Space

The Qajuqturvik Food Centre is nestled right in the heart of the city, Building 655, Mattaaq Street. It neighbours the Igloo church and is attached to the Piviniit Thrift Store. We also share our space with the Iqaluit Food Bank. Tell your friends, and stop by to say hi!

Did you know this beautiful space in the centre of town is available for rent? Mural splashed walls and seating provided for up to 72 at table, 86 max capacity. The food centre can be used to screen your next film, host a community feast, team-building exercises, or community workshops.

For more information drop by or contact us at or by calling 877-0627