Canadian Multiculturalism Day was founded in 2002 by Prime Minister Jean Chretien. June 27th of each year is designated as Canadian Multiculturalism Day for Canadians to celebrate their multicultural heritage, and deepen their appreciation of each other as individuals. Many nationalities have helped Canada become the flourishing nation that it is today. Canadian Multiculturalism Day is an opportunity to celebrate the country's diversity, commitment to equality and mutual respect. Canada was in fact the first country to adopt Multiculturalism as an official policy.
In 2013, Citizenship and Immigration Minister Jason Kenney issued the following statement about Canadian Multiculturalism Day:
Canada is one of the most ethnically, culturally and religiously diverse countries in the world. Our dominion, the true north strong and free, is formed by citizens from many cultural backgrounds who have come together to live in harmony in this free land. We should be proud of this accomplishment and that our model of pluralism serves as an example for the rest of the world to follow.
Canadian Multiculturalism Day is an opportunity to reflect on both the contributions of Canada’s various cultural communities and the values that we all share: freedom, democracy, individual rights and the rule of law.
Canada’s future depends on us growing together. That is why our multiculturalism programs continue to encourage all Canadians to embrace our shared values, history and institutions and to build a strong, integrated society.
There are many different ways you can celebrate Canadian Multiculturalism Day; why not volunteer for one of the many events and programs with the Multicultural Association of Wood Buffalo, or take part in one of the ethnic-cultural celebrations such as the upcoming Annual Philippine Independence Day occurring on June 28th. Contact one of the schools to be a classroom volunteer and indulge yourself in the stories that children share from their own countries and traditions. Canada's diversity distinguishes it from most other countries so lets celebrate on June 27th and get to know and appreciate your neighbors and fellow community members.