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Baking becomes a new tradition
Nunavut youth no stranger to representing community far and wide

Danielle Sachs
Northern News Services
Published Monday, July 22, 2013

An Arviat teenager was already rising to success before acting as president of Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated for a day.

NNSL photo/graphic

Vayda Kaviok, winner of the NTI President for a Day contest, left, stands with Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated president Cathy Towtongie at the unveiling of the monument commemorating the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement. - NNSL file photo

Vayda Kaviok has multiple skills competition awards under her apron from baking events, a keen interest in politics and a desire to expand her abilities.

Kaviok travelled to Iqaluit for the Nunavut Day celebrations. There, she helped NTI president Cathy Towtongie preside over the full day of events and the unveiling of the monument commemorating the 20th anniversary of the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement (NCLA).

"I was so nervous and really excited to go to Iqaluit for Nunavut Day. I represented my community and it was so fun. I got to meet lots of people from all over Nunavut," said Kaviok.

Kaviok won the competition after submitting a speech in April. She said she decided to enter because she wanted to learn more about NTI and the land claims agreement.

"I'm really interested in politics and the legislative assembly," said Kaviok. "I was just talking about how NTI works and what it is and who protects the NCLA, how it started and what it protects."

But politics aren't the 17-year-old's only interest.

"I like travelling and making new friends, but when I have nothing to do, I just bake," she said.

Kaviok has been invited to the Skills Canada competition for baking three years in a row, although last year she wasn't able to make it due to a cancelled flight.

"I started baking when I was a little kid, maybe when I was eight, and started to bake more when I got to high school and started going to Skills Canada Club," said Kaviok, who recently graduated from Grade 12. "It's something I want to do in the future after I take a year off to save up money."

However, Kaviok isn't taking a year off baking, with people routinely calling her for custom cakes for birthdays and weddings.

She also makes desserts for staff at the daycare where she works and is saving up money for tuition to the Cordon Bleu Ottawa Culinary Arts School.

Although she is just about to start her first year of post-secondary school, Kaviok is already planning her next steps after culinary school.

"I talked to some people about businesses and where to go after the culinary arts school," said Kaviok. "I went to the hamlet and researched about businesses and how to get money to start one."

Kaviok said her favourite baking partner is her younger sister, 14-year-old Jillian.

"She's going to attend the Skills Canada Club next year, and I tell her a lot of things about baking because I have the experience at the national level," said Kaviok.

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