The Government of Canada Invests More Than $2.2 Million in Alberta for Community Support, Multiculturalism and Anti-Racism Activities

News release

EDMONTON, September 6, 2019

Guided by a vision of an inclusive and equitable country, the Government of Canada is committed to supporting organizations that show leadership in building stronger communities, celebrating multiculturalism and combatting racism.

Today, the Honourable Amarjeet Sohi, Minister of Natural Resources and Member of Parliament (Edmonton Mill Woods), announced an investment of $2,290,971 in 26 organizations that encourage diversity and promote inclusion across Alberta. Minister Sohi made this announcement on behalf of the Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism.

Funding has been provided through the Community Support for Black Canadian Youth Initiative, as well as the Events, Projects and Community Capacity Building components of the Community Support, Multiculturalism and Anti-Racism Initiatives Program.

Among the many organizations receiving funding are the Alliance Jeunesse-Famille de l’Alberta Society, the Sik Ooh Kotoki Friendship Society, the John Humphrey Centre for Peace and Human Rights and the Portail de l’Immigrant Association de Calgary.

In June 2019, Minister Rodriguez unveiled Building a Foundation for Change: Canada’s Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022, which helps advance the Government of Canada’s vision of fostering and promoting a more inclusive and equitable country for all Canadians. The strategy, with an investment of $45 million, is building on current efforts to create long-term changes in supporting communities and for improved policies, initiatives and practices in our federal institutions. These investments are meant to be the first step of a longer-term commitment and a foundation for change in addressing racism and discrimination in Canada. Applications for new funding opportunities became available on September 3, 2019.

Budget 2018 also provided $19 million to enhance local community supports for Black Canadian youth. Of this funding, $9 million was allocated to Canadian Heritage over three years and $10 million was allocated to the Public Health Agency of Canada over five years to develop research in support of more culturally focused mental health programs in Black Canadian communities

Quotes

“Our government is committed to empowering communities with the tools, resources and opportunities they need to better serve and meet the diverse needs of Canadians, and to breaking down the systemic barriers that racialized communities face in fully participating in Canadian society. We are proud to join Alberta’s organizations in strengthening multiculturalism and combatting racism. By promoting intercultural exchange and fostering respect for cultural diversity, we are building a more equitable and integrated Canada.”

—The Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism

By breaking down barriers, we can build stronger and more inclusive communities. I have seen first-hand the dedication and resilience shown by these organizations, who are working to make our province an even better place to live and raise a family. This funding from our government will allow them to continue their important work on behalf of all Albertans.”

—The Honourable Amarjeet Sohi, Minister of Natural Resources and Member of Parliament (Edmonton Mill Woods)

“Investments in the CSMARI Program and Community Support for Black Canadian Youth Initiative will have a long lasting positive outcome on the communities they support. As well as bringing the community together, these investments, once again, showcase how diversity strengthens our cities, provinces and country.”

—The Honourable Kent Hehr, Member of Parliament (Calgary Centre)

“Diversity is our strength. These projects will help develop and support resilient and dynamic communities across Alberta. I look forward to seeing all that these groups will achieve with these community investments.”

—Randy Boissonnault, Member of Parliament (Edmonton Centre)

“We are delighted to receive this funding from the Government of Canada that will increase the social and economic skills of young Black Francophones in Alberta. This funding will be used to equip Francophone youth of African descent to participate fully and effectively in the socio-economic development of the community and to break the stereotypes that surround them.”

—Luketa M’Pindou, Executive Director, Alliance Jeunesse-Famille de l’Alberta Society

Quick facts

  • The goal of the Community Support, Multiculturalism and Anti-Racism Initiatives (CSMARI) Program is to build an integrated, socially cohesive society by building bridges to promote intercultural understanding; promoting equal opportunity for individuals of all origins; and promoting citizenship, civic engagement and a healthy democracy.

  • The CSMARI Program has three funding components: Events, Projects and Community Capacity Building. It also includes two separate initiatives, Community Support for Black Canadian Youth Initiative and the Paul Yuzyk Youth Initiative for Multiculturalism.

  • The Events component provides funding to community-based events that foster one or more of the following: intercultural or interfaith understanding; civic memory and pride; respect for a healthy democracy; and celebrations of a community’s history and culture

  • The Projects component provides funding for community development, anti-racism initiatives, and engagement projects that promote diversity and inclusion by encouraging positive interaction among community groups through projects that encourage positive interaction between cultural, religious and ethnic communities in Canada; and promote the expression of Canadians’ multiple identities

  • The Community Capacity Building component provides funding for capacity-building projects that will contribute to the recipient’s ability to promote diversity and inclusion, and help achieve one or more of the following objectives: strengthening governance and building partnerships (building the capacity of organizations, and promoting collaboration between service providers); e-capacity (building and/or strengthening the online and social media presence of eligible organizations); establishing an overall external communication strategy; and recruitment and training of volunteers

  • The Community Support for Black Canadian Youth initiative provides funding for projects that address the unique challenges faced by Black Canadian youth through combating discrimination through awareness raising and digital literacy; providing opportunities for Black Canadian youth and empowering them through the promotion of Black history, culture and identity; and developing leadership skills and promoting civic engagement.

  • In June 2019, the Government of Canada unveiled Building a Foundation for Change: Canada’s Anti-Racism Strategy 2019-2022 to help advance the vision of fostering and promoting a more inclusive and equitable country for all Canadians. Budget 2019 announced an investment of $45 million to support this Strategy.

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Contacts

Simon Ross
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage and
Multiculturalism
819-997-7788

Media Relations
Canadian Heritage
819-994-9101
1-866-569-6155
pch.media-media.pch@canada.ca

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