OTTAWA, Sept. 9, 2013 /CNW/ - The Honourable Shelly Glover, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, took the opportunity while attending the Zones théâtrales Festival to announce the renewal of the Collaboration Agreement for the Development of Arts and Culture in the Francophone Minority Communities of Canada for 2013-2018.
"It is our official languages and our arts and culture that bring us all together," said Minister Glover. "They help shape our identity and allow us to share our stories across the country. French and English are an integral part of our history, our identity and our future."
The Agreement aims to provide a framework for cooperation and dialogue between Francophone minority communities, represented by the Fédération culturelle canadienne-française and the signatory federal institutions (the Department of Canadian Heritage, the National Arts Centre, the Canada Council for the Arts, the National Film Board of Canada, CBC/Radio-Canada and Telefilm Canada). It encourages the development of Canada's Francophone and Acadian minorities and promotes their contribution to our country's cultural and artistic richness.
"This agreement is an indispensable means of ensuring the vitality of French-Canadian artists and cultural workers, as it stems from the recognition that the arts and culture are at the heart of an efficient sustainable development strategy for Francophone and Acadian communities," said Marie-Claude Doucet, President of the Fédération culturelle canadienne-française. "The Agreement helps establish a much needed dialogue to be established between communities and government institutions, and—more concretely—it allows for the development of initiatives that will help create a conducive climate for artistic creation and cultural community development across the country."
"Radio-Canada plays an active role in developing the arts and culture of Francophone minority communities," said Louis Lalande, Executive Vice-President of French Services for CBC/Radio-Canada. "This Agreement, which we first signed in 2000, provides a powerful means of supporting the development of new and productive initiatives. The partners' ongoing commitment, confirmed today with the announcement of renewal of the Agreement, will contribute to the advancement of the Francophone culture across the country. We welcome this news."
While at Zones théâtrales, the Minister also highlighted the $150,000 in support provided by Canadian Heritage for the 2013 edition of Zones théâtrales. These funds were made available through equal contributions from the Canada Arts Presentation Fund and the Development of Official-Language Communities Program.
A first agreement for the development of French-Canadian arts and culture was signed in June 1998. It has since been renewed, with additional partners becoming signatories. It remains in effect through 2018. The Agreement and its coordination mechanisms encourage the presentation and promotion of French-Canadian cultural products and artistic events, in addition to contributing to the growth and visibility of Francophone minority communities. To view the Agreement, consult: http://pch.gc.ca/eng/1358262728426/1358262917750
The Government of Canada unveiled the Roadmap for Canada's Official Languages 2013-2018 last spring. The new Roadmap focuses on three pillars that will ensure the vitality of English and French across Canada: education, immigration and communities. As outlined in Economic Action Plan 2013, the Government of Canada is renewing its unprecedented investment in the protection, promotion and celebration of both official languages for another five years. The full text of the Roadmap is available online at http://pch.gc.ca/pgm/slo-ols/strat-eng.cfm.
SOURCE Canadian Heritage