Shavanna shares her experience living in Ottawa

August 9th, 2017

Hello, my name is Shavanna Oogark and I am from Kugaaruk, Nunavut.

I am placed in Ottawa, Onatario. My work placement is at The Canadian Nature Museum and my work is a lot of fun. To be honest I was nervous about my job because I knew there would have been people who spoke french and I didn’t. But I had another worker from here Ottawa Ontario who speaks french, her name is Lisa. I have loved working at The Canadian Nature Museum, as it is a very different job compared  jobs I have had in my community.

My host mom is very generous, kind, caring and beautiful. She helps a lot when she can and is simply an amazing person who accepted my buddy Charmaine Putulik into her house for the next 5 weeks. She has friends who are from Ecuador who live with her parents. Her parents names are Stand and Judy Wolanski and Their names are Carlos, Lula & Flavia, along with their daughter Flavia who is 7 years old and full of joy!

The difference between Ottawa and my community Kugaaruk Nunavut is that there is so many different stores to shop, farmer’s market, malls, clothing stores and much more. The population is much larger than my community. There is so many different jobs available for youth in Ottawa unlike in my community. There is a lot of bugs and different types of pets too in Ottawa, as well as the plants here are different than my home.

I have done so many adventures here in Ottawa and went on 2 different road trips so far. The first one was to Montreal Quebec for a day trip and toured the Bell Center where Montreal Canadiens play! I also went on another road trip to Petawawa Ontario with a high school teacher of mine. My teachers name is Lindi Andrews and she showed me The Army Base. In Ottawa I also went to a light show in a tunnel with my host mom and buddy, different malls, and zip lining! I also got about 5 teachers who live close to Ottawa to come here to see me for a dinner, which was great.

I did two presentations about my home community and territory which went great. I gave gifts I got from my Member Of Legislative Assembly named Emiliano Qirngnuq. They all loved the brand new pens as a gift I gave them after the presentation.

My time in the south was hard at first. I got homesick here and there but it eventually got better after I made a few friends at work which made me feel better and love my work even more as something to look forward to everyday at work.

I hope someone someday who has the same host community, work placement and my host mom Kari Wolanski enjoys every minute of their time here in Ottawa. It sure is very hard at first being away from home on your own, but trust me it get a lot better each and everyday.

It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity! Thank you for having the time to read my blog.

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