Saskatchewan Multicultural Week – 2013 –
November 16 – 24, 2013
From Many Peoples Strength: Multiculturalism Enriches Saskatchewan
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In 1974, Saskatchewan became the first province to enact Multicultural legislation. We celebrate Saskatchewan Multicultural Week every year in November to commemorate this progressive act. We can be proud that it recognizes the right of every community to its identity, language, traditional arts and sciences for the benefit of all. We enhanced it with the revision in 1997 to preserve, strengthen and promote Aboriginal cultures and acknowledge their historic and current contribution to Saskatchewan. You can find the act at Saskatchewan Multiculturalism Act.
The Multicultural Council of Saskatchewan (MCoS) has been instrumental in the development and promotion of these multicultural values and, of course, the provincial motto From Many Peoples Strength, or MULTIS E GENTIBUS VIRES. Responsibility for the Act resides with the Ministry of Parks, Culture and Sport. The Act states broadly the provincial multiculturalism policy and provides the Minister power to carry out the purposes of the Act. The Multicultural Council of Saskatchewan (MCoS) has been instrumental in the development and promotion of these multicultural values. Time to plan for the celebration!
The Multicultural Council of Saskatchewan is committed to promoting, fostering, improving and developing multiculturalism in the economic, cultural and political life of Saskatchewan while working to achieve equality of all residents. To further elaborate on this year’s theme, From Many Peoples Strength: Multiculturalism enriches Saskatchewan, we have outlined some ways multiculturalism has enriched the cultural, economic, social, and political life of Saskatchewan, as these are the areas of focus in our mission statement.
- First Nations’ historic relationships with places in Saskatchewan enrich our understanding of land and heritage. To learn more, visit the Saskatchewan Indian Cultural Centre.
- Creativity is bolstered through diverse world views and art forms, including the integration of cultural arts through works such as Free Range Multicultural Band and the Oskana Symphony.
- There is a great number of restaurants broadening available tastes.
- Festivals representing Saskatchewan’s cultural diversity and individual cultural heritages are flourishing, presenting opportunities to learn, interact and create business.
- Innovation has been demonstrated to be fostered by through diverse perspectives. See article>>> Innovation Through Diversity (pdf).
- Diaspora communities increase trade between Saskatchewan and countries of origin. In Saskatchewan, a 1 per cent increase in the number of immigrants is associated with increases of approximately $30 million in imported goods and $41 million in exported goods. See article>> The Influence of Immigrants on Trade Diversification in Saskatchewan.
- The Nigeria-Canada Forum is developing relationships between governments and businesses to boost trade and cooperation.
- Saskatchewan continues to build relationships with Ukraine for education, business and investment, faith and political interaction. See news release>>> Saskatchewan Continues to Build Relationship with Ukraine.
- Businesses run by entrepreneurs from a variety of ethnocultural backgrounds contribute to the economy.
- Soccer is a sport popular in many parts of the world. The presence of newcomers from regions such as Latin America, Europe and Africa increase the pool of coaches and players for community and competitive soccer. Regina boasts the World Class Players Cup: www.worldclassplayers.org/.
- The expansion of faith communities and multifaith organizations offer a broader understanding of spirituality and practice. To learn more, visit Multi-Faith Saskatchewan.
- Sense of community belonging – as people of many cultural backgrounds join communities that welcome them, we see the revitalization of neighbourhoods and small towns. When differences are accommodated, valued, and celebrated relationship are built that allow for planning and problem-solving.
- Similar to the positive impact of diverse perspectives on innovation in the economy, this is also true in governments and on organizational boards.
- Governing bodies are increasingly representing a variety of nations and cultures with symbols such as flags (Treaty flags, Métis flags, flags flown for independence days recognized by diaspora communities), a Métis sash, and First Nations beaded moose hide mace runner and beaver pelt cushion to represent our First peoples in the provincial Legislature, and an increasing number of communities that issue proclamations for Saskatchewan Multicultural Week.
- Civic boards and committees are learning that we all benefit from diverse leadership, for example the City of Saskatoon has a Cultural Diversity and Race Relations Committee and Office.