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Inuusinni Aqqusaaqtara – My Journey

Inuusinni Aqqusaaqtara – My Journey cancer resources have been created to increase Inuit knowledge about cancer and provide resources to patients, families, caregivers and health professional. The long term goal is to build cancer literacy, increase screening rates, encourage lifestyle changes to reduce cancer incidence and develop platforms for support at each stage of the cancer journey.

Cancer is a leading cause of death among Inuit populations. Compared to the general population of Canada, Inuit have a higher incidence of lung, liver, oesophageal, nasopharyngeal, and salivary cancer. Pauktuutit Inuit Women of Canada is developing culturally appropriate cancer awareness tools and a toolkit to support community health representatives (CHRs), health care providers and Inuit cancer patients.

Cancer Journey Videos

Learning that you have cancer can be very frightening. Getting the news that you have cancer in any language is not easy but when English is not your mother tongue, you may not understand what is being said.

Initially you may think ‘why me?’ or feel your life is ending, so we have provided some stories from Inuk survivors, families and health care providers to give you hope and help you understand that what you are feeling right now is what other people have felt too.

These video clips have been produced to let you know that there are resources to help and support you.

Urban Cancer Centres

Many Inuit live in remote communities and have to leave their home and families to get the necessary medical treatments for cancer. Use the interactive map to learn about the services and accommodation options in each urban centre. Click on the city name below to find out about the cancer services offered.

Montréal, Québec

Southern Quebec Inuit Association (SQIA)M
The Southern Quebec Inuit Association (SQIA) unites southern Quebec Inuit living outside of Inuit Nunangat, mostly from Montreal.

For more information: 514-545-1885

Web: Southern Quebec Inuit Association,

Ullivik supports people from Nunavik who need medical treatment in Montreal, linking patients to the McGill University Health Centre. Ullivik offers accommodation, transportation to and from medical appointments, liaison nurses and interpreters.

McGill University Health Centre (MUHC)
The McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) is the hospital network in Montreal that provides cancer care. Depending on the type of treatment, patients are sent to different hospitals. Most patients will go to the Cedars Cancer Centre (Glen site) but may also have appointments in other hospitals.

For more information: 514-398-2705

Web: McGill University Health Centre,

Ottawa, Ontario

Akausivik Inuit Family Health Team

Champlain Aboriginal Cancer Program

The Champlain Aboriginal Cancer Program was established at the Ottawa Hospital, General Campus, to help improve the cancer care experience of Indigenous people. They support patients and families by:

  • helping to navigate the healthcare system
  • helping coordinate services
  • assisting with language and translation services
  • providing support during clinic visits and other appointments
  • coordinating access to spiritual support and connecting with Elders
  • preparing patients for their first appointment within the cancer program

The Windocage Community Room is available to Indigenous patients and family members as a place of comfort and peace throughout their cancer journey.

The Ottawa Hospitals

The Ottawa Hospital provides cancer care treatment and supportive services at both the General Campus and the Irving Greenberg Family Cancer Centre (located on the grounds of the Queensway Carleton Hospital). Chemotherapy is also provided at 5 satellites within the region which are located in Cornwall, Hawkesbury, Renfrew, Winchester and Pembroke.

For more information:

Ottawa Hospital Windocage Room, General Campus

The Windocage Room at The Ottawa Hospital is designed to be a welcoming space for First Nations, Inuit and Métis patients and their families. The space allows for patients to have a quiet place to meet with members of their care team or to simply take time to relax, reflect and re-engergize while they are at the Cancer Centre.

The Ottawa Hospital Aboriginal Nurse Navigator

The Aboriginal Nurse Navigator provides support to First Nations, Métis and Inuit patients by facilitating and coordinating access to cancer services, addressing cultural and spiritual needs, and networking with FNIM and non-Aboriginal partners to make the cancer journey a culturally safe experience.

For more information:

Larga Baffin House

Larga Baffin House is a medical boarding home for individuals travelling to Ottawa for medical services not available in Nunavut. They provide local transportation to and from appointments in the greater Ottawa region, home cooked meals, comfortable accommodation, and arrange return travel upon completion of medical appointments. Larga Baffin is an Inuit owned company started by Nunasi Corporation and Qikiqtaaluk Corporation.

For more information:

Ottawa Health Services Network (OHSNI)

OHSNI provides support for Nunavut patients who require medical treatment in Ottawa. OHSNI facilitates communication between medical providers and families in the North. OHSNI also provides translation services, administrative support and nursing case management.

For more information:

Winnipeg, Manitoba

CancerCare Manitoba

CancerCare Manitoba provides cancer treatment and support for Manitoba Inuit and people from the Kivalliq region of Nunavut. CancerCare Manitoba has online cancer information sheets and audio files translated into Inuktitut.

Patient pathway diagrams in English and Inuktitut help show what a cancer journey may look like for a patient. The lung, breast and colon pathway diagrams also provide expected timelines to move to the next steps along the journey for these types of cancer. All pathway diagrams have contact information for different programs and services at CancerCare Manitoba, including WRHA Indigenous Health.

For more information: Toll-free 1-866-561-1026

Web: CancerCare Manitoba,

Kivalliq Inuit Centre

Kivalliq Inuit Centre provides services to 8 communities in the Kivalliq region of Nunavut. Services are funded by the Government of Nunavut and include travel expenses, accommodation, meals, interpretation, discharge planning and some patient care services. Kivalliq staff coordinate appointment times and travel to and from appointments outside home communities for eligible clients. Each client must be a Nunavut resident and have a valid healthcare number. The Government of Nunavut provides services regionally when possible. Tertiary care for Kivalliq residents is provided by the Winnipeg Health Region.

For more information: Discharge planning and interpreters: 204-989-1020

Boarding home and transportation: 204-944-7110

Churchill: 204-675-8313 or 204-675-8320

Address: 310 Burnell St., Winnipeg MB

Edmonton, Alberta

Cross Cancer Centre

As one of the two cancer treatment centres in Alberta, the Cross Cancer Centre provides cancer care for northern Alberta. They provide medical and supportive cancer care for patients in need of medical treatment. The Cross Cancer Centre has an Aboriginal cancer navigator who works directly with First Nations, Inuit and Métis patients providing appointment coordination and administrative assistance.

For more information:

Larga Ltd.

Larga Ltd. is a medical boarding home for individuals travelling to Edmonton for medical services not available in Nunavut or the Northwest Territories. They provide accommodations, local transportation to and from appointments and the airport, and arrange medical appointments and referrals. Larga Ltd. is an Inuit company owned by the Kitikmeot Corporation and Nunasi Corporation.

For more information:

Northern Health Services Network (NHSN)

NHSN offers assistance to patients from the Northwest Territories, Nunavut, and the Yukon who are receiving medical treatment in Edmonton. Some of the services NHSN provides include support for patients and their families when meeting with health care providers, assistance for patients to access Territorial benefits they may be eligible for, and information to families about transportation and housing available in Edmonton.

For more information:

St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador

Dr. H. Bliss Murphy Cancer Centre

Dr. H. Bliss Murphy Cancer Centre is attached to the northwest corner of the Health Sciences Centre. It is the only facility in the province that provides radiation treatment. It is an outpatient facility that is open Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (except holidays).

For more information:

Aboriginal Patient Navigator Program

This program operates through the Health Science Centre. The Aboriginal Patient Navigator (APN) works with Aboriginal patients/clients, caregivers and their families. The APN supports patients and provides community services to Aboriginal patients accessing health care.

For more information:

St. John’s Native Friendship Centre

The St. John’s Native Friendship Centre offers boarding for hospital outpatients and their families receiving treatments that are not available in their own community. The 10 bedroom facility is complete with kitchen, play area, living room and dining room.

For more information:

Daffodil Place

Daffodil Place is a 24 room boarding home operated by the Newfoundland and Labrador division of the Canadian Cancer Society. Daffodil Place provides a place to stay for people with cancer and their caregivers who must travel to St. John’s to receive cancer care. Daffodil Place also offers support services to clients, including emotional support, information resources and recreational activities.

For more information:

Phase 1: Kaggutiq Inuit Cancer Glossary

From 2012 – 2014, Pauktuutit received funding from the Public Health Agency of Canada to hold focus groups to engage Inuit communities and reach out to CHRs and health care providers working with Inuit cancer patients. The project included the Inuit Cancer Literacy Forum held in Inuvik, NT, in July 2013. This forum brought together Inuit medical translators, cancer content experts, community health and social service providers, land claims organization representatives, educators, elders and youth to address the lack of cancer terminology and the unique differences of dialects in Inuit regions. Through this forum the Kaggutiq Inuit Cancer Glossary was developed.

The Kaggutiq Inuit Cancer Glossary was Pauktuutit’s first cancer resource for Inuit. It is intended to provide Inuit patients and caregivers, as well as health care professionals with plain language information in English about cancer in English and five dialects of Inuktitut.

The Kaggutiq Inuit Cancer Glossary inspired a strategic partnership that brought together organizations with complementary experience and expertise through recognizing that a lack of commonly understood and used Inuktitut vocabulary was a barrier to communicating effectively about cancer.

As part of Phase I Pauktuutit also created the cancer journey video series available on YouTube, discussing the Inuit cancer journey from the perspective of survivors, educators and health care workers it is a glimpse into the reality of many Inuit traveling to urban centres for medical treatment.

Kaggutiq Inuit Cancer Glossary

The Kaggutiq Inuit Cancer Glossary is intended to provide Inuit patients and caregivers, as well as health care professionals with plain language cancer information in English and five major dialects of Inuktitut.

Pauktuutit encourages Inuit and health service providers to use this glossary of terms to improve communication and understanding of cancer terms. The Kaggutiq Inuit Cancer Glossary is a living document and your feedback is one way for us to continuously add to the glossary.

Phase II: Inuit Cancer Project

The goal of Pauktuutit’s Inuit Cancer Project is to increase Inuit knowledge about cancer in general and specifically about cancer risk factors, cancer screening and early detection.

Pauktuutit is now working in collaboration with the Canadian Cancer Society and the project advisory committee through funding provided by Jaguar Land Rover Canada. The goal of this project is to further facilitate the dissemination of the Kaggutiq Inuit Cancer Glossary and develop other crucial Inuit specific health literacy resources in order to increase awareness and understanding of cancer among Inuit communities and ultimately improve health outcomes.

Pauktuutit’s Inuit Cancer Project will develop region-specific awareness tools that explain cancers, identify cancer risk factors, describe screening procedures and describe the types of treatment and care associated with different cancers. Additionally, information and resources will be developed to support Inuit patients and the work of Inuit and non-Inuit health care providers.

The long-term objective is to build health literacy among Inuit populations, increase screening rates, encourage lifestyle changes to reduce cancer incidence and develop platforms for support at every stage of the cancer journey. Approximately 60,000 people living in 53 communities in four regions – Inuvialuit (NWT), Nunavut, Nunavik (northern Quebec) and Nunatsiavut (Labrador) – will benefit from this project.


This project is a collaboration between Pauktuutit Inuit Women of Canada and the Canadian Cancer Society generously supported by Jaguar Land Rover Canada.

Jaguar Land Rover Canada is the sole corporate supporter of the Inuit Cancer Project. Jaguar Land Rover supports the project through their Global Corporate Social Responsibility Program, which aims to improve lives and advance knowledge by supporting projects that enhance health, well being and the environment.
The Canadian Cancer Society is a national community–based organization of volunteers whose mission is the eradication of cancer and the enhancement of the quality of life of people living with cancer. The Society provides expertise in interpreting research, developing recommendations and framing advice in plain language.
Pauktuutit is the national non-profit organization representing all Inuit women in Canada. Its mandate is to foster a greater awareness of the needs of Inuit women, and to encourage their participation in community, regional and national concerns in relation to social, cultural and economic development.

Project Advisory Committee