North of 60

10 Years of Arctic Connections

Ten years ago, Western Region of Society of Saint Vincent de Paul took on the challenge that was initiated by Eileen Orysiuk and Sister Fay Trombley – to assist those in need living in Arctic Canada. They started with the Community of Tuktoyaktuk. The list of Arctic communities and the support from SSVP across Canada grew.

Today three regions of the Society support those in need that live in 19 Canadian communities in the Far North. Ontario Vincentians focus on Nunavut, Quebec Region on Nunavik, and Western Region on Northwest Territories.

The communities we serve are highlighted on the map at left.

We are grateful to our corporate benefactors who make this project financially viable. The warehouse and transportation logistics, food supply and household product donations continue to be strong.

COVID restrictions continued in 2021 and resulted in fewer food donations from parishioners, families, and friends. However, many loyal supporters, foundations and charities provided cash donations that allowed for bulk purchases of the basic food security shipments to those in need in the NWT.

This project is managed by a team of SSVP volunteers; there are no paid employees.

The role of each team member is to develop knowledge of a community and rapport with its residents, which enables an accurate listing of their needs and confidence of fair distribution of the products shipped.

Team members try to make community visits every couple of years; however COVID has restricted this over the last two years. They also meet their contacts or Community Elders when they travel to Edmonton on personal or medical visits.

Your continued support will allow the Society's North of 60 Project to strengthen and grow. Thanks for helping us to help others, and blessings to all of you.

For stories and details, read or download the full 10-year Anniversary Annual Report below.


A Video Tour

Join Peter Ouellette, from the Western Regional Council, as he describes the North of 60 Project and invites you to meet Michelle, Ruth Anne, Elizabeth, and David from the Northwest Territories and also Helen, Keith, Lu-Ann, and Dorothy from Nunavut. Take a few minutes to visit them, through this video. See their environment, learn about their works, and feel their gratitude.

Thank you for viewing and sharing this video!

To donate to the Western Region, North of 60 Project, so we can continue to send sea cans

to our friends in the North : and specify

"North of 60"

in the Message for Saint Vincent de Paul Edmonton box

Food prices in communities north of the 60th parallel can be exorbitant and further enshrine communities in poverty, which is a major concern in the north. Over the years, as part of its mission, the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul (SSVP) has developed an innovative approach of:

- reaching out and establishing contacts in remote communities north of the 60th parallel;

- identifying their needs;

- gathering non-perishables and other day-to-day household supplies and other articles required;

- arranging sea containers to deliver these gathered products.

As part of the SSVP North of 60 initiatives, there is the enablement of the creation of Food Banks and used clothing distribution centres; this enablement allows to:

- build skills and knowledge in the community;

- effect self-determination;

- cultivate community Leaders;

- bring sustainable social change.

This initiative assists with food safety and supports social integration, further working towards a people-driven, equitable and evolving North. This initiative also develops and supports communities for the benefit of children and youth, especially in the context of providing students some proper nutrition, and assist to improve student focus and ability to complete classroom tasks with more efficiency.

For more information please visit

To donate to the Western Region, North of 60 Project, so we can continue to send sea cans

to our friends in the North : and specify

"North of 60"

in the Message for Saint Vincent de Paul Edmonton box