ST. JOHN’S, September 26, 2013 – Passages Canada, was joined by the Honourable Minister of Education Clyde Jackman, students from St. Bonaventure's College and Holy Heart High School and community members for a lively discussion on Canadian identity to mark the launch of our beCOMING Canada video series at The Rooms theatre in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador.
beCOMING Canada, the latest educational tool from Passages Canada, features 23 bilingual interviews which explore the life experiences of new and long-established Canadians. From stories of growing up surrounded by Newfoundland’s rich traditions, to those of refugees escaping hardship to build a new life in Toronto, Passages Canada speakers explore what it means to be Canadian, in all its complexity.
“These filmed reflections from Passages Canada speakers, each with a compelling story, highlight the scope of the Canadian experience and the diversity of the stories that make Canada so unique,” said Anthony Wilson-Smith, President of Historica Canada.
Human rights advocate and Passages Canada Youth Ambassador, Remzi Cej, shared his story of escaping the war in Kosovo with his family in 1999. Answering students' questions via video link was Tanzanian-Canadian Azim Lila, who immigrated to Toronto at the age of nine thinking the city would just be "land and space". Law student and Newfoundlander, Jessica Walsh, also joined the conversation to share her thoughts on cultural identity. Students addressed the audience with their own stories of heritage and identity.
Passages Canada, a storytelling initiative of Historica Canada, offers volunteers from a range of ethno-cultural, religious and linguistic background the opportunity to share their personal accounts of cultural identity and heritage on-line in our multimedia Story Archiveand in person with schools and community groups. Since 2002, over 900 speakers have created dialogue on Canada's rich diversity with over 250,000 youth and adults, as we continue to build understanding and respect for Canada’s shared history and values. Passages Canada is generously supported by Citizenship and Immigration Canada and TD Bank Group.
Historica Canada, formerly known as the Historica-Dominion Institute, is the largest charitable organization dedicated to Canadian history, identity and citizenship. Its mandate is to build active and informed citizens through a greater knowledge and appreciation of the history, heritage and stories of Canada.
For more information:
Fadia Otariste, Communications Officer
t. 1.866.701.1867 ext 259
Calina Ellwand, Program Coordinator
t. 1.866.701.1867 ext 392