AT a reception to launch Asian Heritage Month in Gatineau, Quebec, Jason Kenney, Minister for Multiculturalism, and Tim Uppal, Minister of State for Multiculturalism, on Friday announced that the Government of Canada is providing inter-action funding of almost $200,000 for the 100 Year Journey Project, a book chronicling the narratives of 100 South Asian pioneers to Canada. The book tells the stories of some of the first South Asians in Canada, detailing how they provided shelter and support for new immigrants, fought tirelessly for the voting rights of all communities, and spent years away from their loved ones as they set up new lives for themselves and their families.
This expansion will allow the 100 Year Journey Project to reprint the book, which was originally published in November 2014, as well as develop and release an electronic edition. The project will also create teaching materials to aid in the presentation of the book and develop a comprehensive website to capture and share more stories.
“Each May, during Asian Heritage Month, Canadians acknowledge the long and rich history of Canadians of Asian origin and their contributions to Canada. The South Asian community has played an important role in the building of our country, which is why it is important to preserve and share their stories,” said Kenney.
“Canada’s unity in our diversity is truly one of our greatest strengths as a nation. And there is no better way to encourage this than by highlighting the achievements and contributions of Canada’s many cultural communities. Our Government is proud to make the 100 Year Journey book more accessible to Canadians in order to increase understanding and appreciation for the stories of those early South Asian pioneers who helped build Canada,” said Uppal.
* According to the 2011 National Household Survey, Canadians of South Asian Heritage are the largest visible minority category in Canada.
* As of 2011, more than 1.6 million Canadians claimed South Asian descent, constituting five percent of the Canadian population and 32 percent of Canada’s Asian Canadian population.
* In May 2002, the Government of Canada signed an official declaration to designate May as Asian Heritage Month.
* Each May, Asian Heritage Month provides Canadians the opportunity to reflect on and celebrate the contributions of Canadians of Asian heritage to the growth and prosperity of Canada.