For the past weeks, 22-year-old Michael Inuarak has been preparing for the gruelling, annual weeklong Nunavut Quest traditional dog sled race where competitors traverse an unforgiving sea of ice and tundra.
This year, the race starts in Inuarak’s hometown of Pond Inlet and ends more than 300 kilometres away in Arctic Bay.
Kieran Oudshoorn, writing for the CBC:
“I love the race. It’s a very exciting time,” said Inuarak.
“There was one time when my dogs were running after a polar bear and I had no rifle. So I was sweating and trying to avoid the polar bear as much as I can.”
The last three times Inuarak participated in the Quest, he placed third — an impressive feat for such a young musher.
Inuarak is proud of how well he did, but hopes he will do better this year.
“I’m not worried. I’m just a bit nervous because of all the fast racers who are going to be ahead of me. And I’m not using as [many] dogs as I normally do.”
Through all phases of life, Canada and Scandinavian countries treat their citizens well, according to US News.
Best Countries for Quality of Life
- New Zealand
- United Kingdom
- South Korea
- Czech Republic
More info at US News
It’s now illegal for manufacturers to add trans fats to any food made or imported into the Canada. Trans fats are known to increase “bad” cholesterol, in turn raising the risk of heart disease.
Canada’s ban on the main source of artificial trans fats came into effect Monday, making it illegal for manufacturers to use the additive in any food made or imported into the country, as well as in any meals prepared in restaurants.
The ban takes aim at partially hydrogenated oils, or PHOs, which are the main source of industrially produced trans fats in all foods sold in Canada. The new regulation applies only to PHOs, not naturally occurring trans fats, which can be found in some animal-based foods such as milk, cheese, beef and lamb.
Trans fats have been used for the last century to add taste and texture to food as a replacement for butter. They also extend the shelf life of many foods, including commercial baked goods like cookies, pastries, donuts and muffins, snack foods and fried foods.
Read more in the Globe and Mail, CBC
Symbiosis is a housing program that matches university students at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario with seniors living alone in the community. And it’s an idea that is becoming increasingly popular. It helps lower housing costs for university students and can have significant health benefits for the elderly.
The co-generational housing program is called Symbiosis because it’s based on a mutually beneficial, symbiotic relationship, says its founder, Soumeya Abed.
“It connects students who are looking for affordable housing with seniors who have a spare room, a furnished room, and can offer a little bit of extra support and companionship,” she said.
More at CBC
It’s not surprising to read that one in four children in Canada are overweight or obese, and only one in three school-age children meet minimum physical activity guidelines.
But other published findings about the health and well being of our children in Canada might be surprising.
Children First Canada and the O’Brien Institute for Public Health have just published a new report examining the mental and physical health of the 7.9 million young people under the age of 19. “Many Canadians think this is one of the best countries in the world to raise a child, but the statistics prove otherwise,” says Sara Austin, founder and lead director of Children First Canada.
She notes that Canada ranks a middling 25th out of 41 countries in UNICEF ranking of well-being of children and youth.
The Canadian Liberal government is looking to lift two million Canadians out of poverty by 2030 without committing to new spending.
Justin Trudeau’s government will introduce legislation “as early as possible” to entrench the official poverty line into law. The new plan links multiple federal programs to efforts to reduce poverty and predicts those measures will lift about 650,000 Canadians out of poverty by 2019, next year.
Social Development Minister Jean-Yves Duclos pointed to a list of already announced federal programs to reach that goal.
Duclos was in Vancouver Tuesday to unveil the Liberal’s anti-poverty plan, called “Opportunity for All — Canada’s First Poverty Reduction Strategy.”
It calls for a reduction in the rate of poverty by 20 per cent from 2015 levels by 2020 and by 50 per cent by 2030.
That would mean about 2.1 million people would no longer live under the poverty line within 12 years.
Read More at CBC
U.S. News & World Report has released their annual “Best Countries” index.
They evaluated 80 countries and surveyed 21,000 people from four regions (the Americas, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East and Africa). Countries were graded 65 different ways, from how well they rank in “citizenship,” “cultural influence,” “education,” “heritage,” “power,” to “quality of life,” to name a few.
Interestingly, both the UK and the USA are down one position in this year’s rankings.
- Germany (up 1 from 2017)
- United Kingdom (down 1 from 2017)
- Australia (up 1 from 2017)
- United States (down 1 from 2017)
- Netherlands (up 1 from 2017)
More at US News & World Report
Colin Robertson, vice-president and fellow at the Canadian Global Affairs Institute – Globe and Mail:
As we have learned through our initiatives to help the Rohingya in Myanmar and to constrain the Maduro regime in Venezuela, advancing human rights in countries that don’t care is a difficult proposition. But if a feminist foreign policy and advocacy for human rights is to mean anything, we have to stand up, even if we stand alone.
Canada’s best place to live, according to MoneySense.ca, is Oakville, Ontario.
Check out the rankings among the 415 competitors.