Fostering Differences to Promulgate the Strength and Durability of Canadian Diversity

The Lebanese & Arab Social Service Agency (LASSA), with Canadian Heritage funding, is launching the year long Fostering Differences to Promulgate the Strength and Durability of Canadian Diversity project across Ontario, Quebec, and Nova Scotia. It takes all of us in Canada to continue to build, protect and foster a community that is stronger through its differences. The project will engage diverse ethnocultural communities in dialogue on cultural values to foster respect and understanding between communities, and examine integration and inclusion in Canadian society, through its Discussion Group: Fostering Intercultural Understanding and Diversity events in Gatineau, Toronto, Halifax, and Montreal. Our diverse cultural communities are also invited to discuss Democratic Values and Institutions and examine the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms with an immigration lawyer / legal scholar in our Workshop: Engaging in and Inclusive and Equitable Future event in Ottawa, Halifax, and Montreal. The project will host a Women’s Forum in Toronto to discuss barriers to economic advancement facing women of diversity and opportunities for more inclusive pathways to success.

In addition, this initiative will bring our Canadian community together to share in the rich heritage, food, and artistic landscapes of various cultures at our International Cuisine Day in Gatineau and a Cultural Arts Exhibit in Nova Scotia. In March 2019, there will be an opportunity to learn from the voices of scholars, activists, and community workers as the project culminates in a one-day conference on intercultural understanding, integration, and inclusion in the nation’s capital. Together, we continue to move forward on how to build on the strength of our diversity in Canada.

Objectives

The Program’s objective is to build an integrated, socially cohesive society by:

  • building bridges to promote intercultural understanding;
  • promoting equal opportunity for individuals of all origins;
  • fostering citizenship, civic engagement and a healthy democracy.

The Program’s aim is that participants and the targeted public gain knowledge, develop strategies and take action toward increasing awareness of:

  • The strength of Canada’s cultural diversity;
  • issues affecting full participation in society and the economy; related  to culture, race, ethnicity or religion;
  • democratic institutions, systems, and legal frameworks, including the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Expected Results

  • Promoting diversity and inclusion by encouraging interaction among community groups;
  • Working toward the elimination of discrimination, racism and prejudice;
  • Providing opportunities for youth community engagement and involvement;
  • Bringing people together through art, culture, and dialogue.