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Idle hands cause problems

Kerry McCluskey
Northern News Services

Sanikiluaq (Aug 19/02) - A Sanikiluaq man is frustrated with the lack of recreational options available to youths in his community.

"Even though the kids are on a school break, there is nothing happening," Kopapik Ningeocheak said last week. "The problem is there are no sports happening in Sanikiluaq."

Ningeocheak said he spoke to the community's recreation co-ordinator and then voiced his concerns again at a hamlet council meeting in June. He said when activities still were not organized, he put together a protest with the community's youth.

"I went on local radio asking for support for the protest. So many kids showed up," said Ningeocheak.

He said the group gathered in front of the hamlet office and chanted, "We want sports, we want sports."

Ningeocheak said the demonstration failed to result in activities being organized. He said he then confronted the community's mayor last week and decided to go to the media when activities still didn't develop.

"I hear on local radio kids are getting into trouble, throwing rocks and going out on their Hondas at night. They're not tired. They want something to do," said Ningeocheak. "Every morning I hear complaints on the radio," he said.

Recreation co-ordinator Louisa Tookalook said putting together activities for the hamlet's youth does not fall into her job description. She said council established the position of sports and games co-ordinator, but that person resigned from the job in July.

Tookalook said efforts were being made to find a replacement, but "they're working on it."