A Yellowknife non-profit is capping a six-month campaign by giving away condoms at the city’s liquor stores in the lead-up to Valentine’s Day.
This coming week, shoppers at the stores will begin to see “awareness packages” from the Yellowknife Association for Community Living (YKACL) featuring condoms and pregnancy test kits.
The association is hoping to promote healthy pregnancy by educating people about the risks of cannabis and alcohol to moms-to-be.
The packages – available for a limited time – feature the image of muskoxen, which YKACL says is a representation of its hope that residents will look after each other.
“Muskoxen protect their babies from danger by forming a circle around the little ones on the tundra,” read a news release issued by the association this week.
“If someone in your social circle is expecting a baby, protect her pregnancy by making healthy choices together.
“Marijuana, alcohol, cigarettes, e-cigarettes, opioids, too many unhealthy foods, and any other substance that may enter a mom-to-be’s system can affect her baby-to-be.”
Cannabis has been sold at one of the city’s two liquor stores since October.
The association urges expecting and new mothers to avoid cannabis, alcohol, smoking, and second-hand smoke while pregnant or breastfeeding.
YKACL hopes its packages may help to prevent unintended pregnancies, which, it argues, often occur in teenage women who are at the highest risk of binge-drinking.
The campaign follows the territorial government’s launch of a separate campaign earlier this month, using augmented reality to warn youth about the effects of cannabis.