Gov. Gen. David Johnston addressed the Nunatsiavut Assembly in Hopedale Wednesday, making him the first vice-regal representative to do so since the Inuit government was established in 2005.

Johnston's visit created excitement in the coastal Labrador community. While he toured historic sites, such as the Moravian Mission Complex and the local school, Johnston took time to greet locals.

But it was the message he sent to Inuit government members that resonated the most.

"Not even a decade old, and the government representing the Labrador Inuit is already making great gains. You are building your communities, ensuring preservation of resources and you're bringing success to the region," Johnston said.

Johnston told members of the legislature they are an inspiration to Inuit across the country.


Gov. Gen. David Johnston was in Hopedale on Wednesday. (Kate Adach/CBC)

He told CBC News he wanted residents to know "that there are people elsewhere in Canada who care about them, who respect enormously what they're doing, that they're an important part of Canada, and their journey in maintaining traditional cultures and continuing the great richness of Canadian diversity continues."

Students and staff packed the school gymnasium to hear the Governor General speak, exchange gifts with him, and perform.

Beverly Hunter was part of a community choir that entertained Johnston.

"You can see a lot of people here who are very excited about him being here. And I'm just hoping that we get more people in like the Governor General," Hunter said.

Johnston visits Corner Brook, Portugal Cove-St. Philips and St. John's on Thursday.

With files from Kate Adach