Our Raglan nickel operation in north Canada has been involved in Tamatumani since 2008. Tamatumani is a government-sponsored programme that works with local Innuit communities to identify long-term employment opportunities to Inuit workers.
For the Inuit, Tamatumani is a powerful word. It is mentioned all the time by all ages, from children to the elders and is an encouragement to continuously improve. It means 'the next time around it's going to be more successful'.
As part of Tamatumani, Raglan employees visiting communities in the local Nunavik region, attending community events to discuss job opportunities and meet interested candidates, visiting high schools to encourage students to consider a career in mining and meeting with local community representatives on a variety of issues.
We benchmark Tamatumani against similar programmes - both in Canada and internationally. To date, Tamatumani has created 58 entry-level positions for Inuit workers at Raglan and at the end of 2011, Inuit employees made up 18% of the Raglan workforce.
Annie Kenuayuak, Raglan's Inuit Employment and Training Coordinator Tamatumani, explains her role in attracting new employees to the mine.
"As part of my role in the Tamatumani department, I do a lot of recruiting in the villages of Nunavik. We also promote education in the villages. We plan and work with the school officials and meet students who could then go on to become apprentices.
It's a bit of a culture shock for people who have never been here before. It's like going to a different planet. As part of our recruitment plan of Inuit workers, we invite the Inuit first to come and visit, if possible with a family member. If they feel they can be happy here, then we give them the opportunity. If they need more time we give them that time.
My cultural background is very strong and I am proud to be an Inuk. With the Tamatumani department, respect and openness has increased for everyone. My colleagues and the management respect my identity and beliefs. The respect they show towards me and my fellow Inuit is very important. I never saw that before until Glencore (formerly Xstrata) came. This feeling is coming from the bottom of my heart."