CANADA, WE ALL BELONG!
OTTAWA, October 14, 2005 — The
Honourable Joe Volpe, Minister of Citizenship and
Immigration, today announced that dozens of special
citizenship ceremonies will be held in communities
across Canada from October 17 to 23 as part of this
year’s Citizenship Week festivities. Close to 1,800
newcomers from all over the world will take the
citizenship oath during these ceremonies, and many
Canadians will reaffirm their pride in being Canadian
“I encourage everyone to join in this year’s
Citizenship Week celebrations and express their pride in
being part of the great Canadian family,” said Minister
Volpe. “Canada’s Citizenship Week provides an
opportunity for all Canadians to reflect on the value of
Canadian citizenship, our rights and responsibilities as
citizens and the principles of respect, liberty, peace
Citizenship Week festivities this year will also
feature the presentation of 19 Citation for Citizenship
awards in communities across Canada. The awards are
presented every two years to honour Canadian individuals
and organizations that have demonstrated exemplary
citizenship in helping newcomers to successfully
integrate into Canadian society.
“All Canadians can be immensely proud of the
generosity and tireless effort each of this year’s
Citation award winners has demonstrated in helping
newcomers more quickly adjust to their new life in
Canada,” Minister Volpe added. “These awards both
recognize and reflect the values of caring, sharing and
respect that have played such a critical role in helping
make Canada the great country that it is today and that
will continue to do so over the coming years.”
For more information on Canada’s Citizenship Week,
including citizenship ceremonies open to the public,
Citation for Citizenship recipients, and how you can get
involved in promoting citizenship in your community,
please visit the "What’s New" section of the Citizenship
and Immigration Web site at
For more information
Director of Communications
Citizenship and Immigration Canada
Citizenship and Immigration Canada
PROFILES OF THE 2005 CITATION FOR CITIZENSHIP
André Aubert, Trois-Rivières, Quebec
André Aubert counts more than 30 years of volunteer
work. Since May 2004, he has taken care of a nine-member
family from Colombia, finding them a place to live and
helping them with many other aspects of their new life
Archpriest Michel Fawaz, Saint-Laurent,
Archpriest Michel Fawaz has helped thousands of
newcomers settle in their new home through his social,
humanitarian and spiritual volunteer work.
Betty Peters, Morden, Manitoba
As a home/school liaison worker for the Western School
Division in Morden, Betty Peters works with immigrant
families who are struggling with day-to-day tasks
related to school.
Changing Together: A Centre for Immigrant
Women, Edmonton, Alberta
Changing Together: A Centre for Immigrant Women is a
place for immigrant women to meet and work together to
solve their problems. The Centre provides free services
in about 40 languages.
Eugene Winter, North York, Ontario
Eugene Winter passed away in 1995. During his lifetime,
he established several organizations to support the
cultural and spiritual life of the Jewish community. He
helped 10,000 Hungarian Jewish immigrants to adapt to
Canadian life by providing food, shelter, clothing and
Farida Chishti, Charlottetown, P.E.I.
Since arriving in Canada in 1993, Farida Chishti has
volunteered to help settle refugees and promote
tolerance for and harmonious relations with minorities.
She produced the play “New Canadian Kid” about the
problems faced by an immigrant family in Canada. The
play was presented to over 3,000 students in schools
across Prince Edward Island.
Father Eddie Cormier and the Comité
d’accueil des réfugiés, St. Louis, P.E.I.
In 2003, Father Eddie Cormier approached Citizenship and
Immigration Canada and offered to sponsor a family of
refugees in Prince Edward Island. He formed the
Comité d’accueil des réfugiés (refugee welcoming
committee). The committee ensured that the Burundi
family of 10 had housing, food, medical care,
transportation, education, and especially friendship.
Father Gratien Girod, Ottawa, Ontario
As a trained psychotherapist, Father Gratien Girod
offers counselling to immigrants through the
Intercultural Counselling Program he established at
Ottawa’s Catholic Immigration Centre. He is also the
co-founder of the Herridge Community Health Centre,
which promotes illness prevention and a healthy
lifestyle in ethnic communities.
Immigrant and Multicultural Services Society,
Prince George, British Columbia
The Immigrant and Multicultural Services Society
provides a wide range of services and programs,
including language training, employment counselling and
assistance, interpretation and translation services, and
programs for youths and seniors. It is the only service
provider for immigrants in the region.
John Halani, Vancouver, British Columbia
John Halani is active in more than a dozen
organizations, including the Vancouver Multicultural
Society, the Greater Vancouver Citizenship Council, the
Alexander Housing Society and the Ethno Business
Council. He has helped many people with personal,
occupational and settlement guidance, giving many of
them a sense of self in their new country.
Leticia Adair, Saint John, New Brunswick
Leticia Adair is an active volunteer in her community.
In 1988, she became involved with a group of refugee
claimants from Central America. Since then, she has
helped hundreds of refugees and immigrants adapt to
their new life in Canada.
Luella Gaultier, Edmonton, Alberta
Luella Gaultier began by volunteering in the Refugee
Sponsorship Program and as an
English-as-a-second-language teacher. She then took a
job as an employment counsellor and job developer for
immigrants. She currently develops programs to help
internationally educated engineering and accounting
professionals find employment in their field.
Marianne Skoropad, Regina, Saskatchewan
Marianne Skoropad’s involvement with refugees dates back
to the time of the Vietnam refugee crisis. She often
took extra jobs cleaning houses to earn a little more
money to help her refugees. Recently, she organized an
interfaith church group to encourage refugee sponsorship
in the Regina area.
Metropolitan Immigrant Settlement
Association, Halifax, Nova Scotia
The Metropolitan Immigrant Settlement Association (MISA)
is a community-based organization that welcomes
newcomers and recognizes their essential role in Canada.
MISA offers a broad range of programs, including
settlement and employment services, translation and
interpretation services, language assessment, and
immigrant business development services.
Multicultural Association of Carleton County,
Florenceville, New Brunswick
The Multicultural Association of Carleton County works
on two levels: providing settlement services to
immigrants and educating the community to ensure that
newcomers feel welcome. The Association is also
organizing a rural forum on immigration in February
Nayyar Javed, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
Nayyar Javed is a psychologist who has spent years
researching, writing and speaking about immigration,
racism, violence against women and children and health
issues. She has worked tirelessly for 25 years to help
newcomers feel welcome in Canada and settle successfully
into the Saskatoon community.
New Canadian Program, Waterloo, Ontario
The New Canadian Program was set up 13 years ago to help
immigrants pursue their career goals. The program
provides a wide range of services, including career and
job search counselling, an in-class job search program
and support in obtaining employment related to their
Refuge Juan Moreno, Montréal, Quebec
Refuge Juan Moreno is a short-term emergency shelter
that offers services to women and children who are
refugees. The refuge also offers services that promote
integration, and provides referrals to other community
School District 23 – Racism-Free District
Steering Committee, Kelowna, British Columbia
School District 23 (Central Okanagan ) established the
Racism-Free District Steering Committee in 1997. The
committee has developed a five-year plan that includes
promoting racism-free initiatives in schools, providing
diversity training for students and staff, and hosting
citizenship ceremonies in schools.