Claiming Our Place: Women’s Relationship with Rivers

Women's hands join together in a circle. In the middle of the circle Muskrat Falls is depicted.

Happy Valley-Goose Bay is grappling with the socio-economic impacts of building a new hydroelectric dam at Muskrat Falls (the Lower Churchill Hydroelectric Generation Project).  This is the second dam on this river, and its construction is significant to all of the peoples in the region.

Over the last few decades people in northern Labrador, especially indigenous peoples, have frequently experienced direct and indirect displacement from the land due to resource-based development.  In spite of having strong connections to the “Big Land” and natural environment, indigenous and women’s voices are often left out of conversations about economic development in Labrador.

Claiming Our Place has two core objectives:

  • Raise local women’s awareness of the large economic development projects in the region that will have an impact on their lives, wellbeing, and the wellbeing of their community
  • Develop the ability of women to participate effectively in community discussions, planning meetings, and events about economic development and create tools to amplify their voices

This project's guiding questions are:

  • What is the connection between local women and the local natural environment and what are the potential implications to their wellbeing given the current natural resource economic development agenda?
  • What can women do to influence this agenda so that it takes their interests into account?