MAPLE, ON, Nov. 8, 2013 /CNW/ - The Honourable Julian Fantino, Minister of Veterans Affairs, joined Korean War Veteran Doug Finney to discuss the Memory Project Speakers Bureau and the importance of remembrance with students at St. Cecilia Catholic Elementary School in Maple, Ontario.
"Veterans helped build the Canada that we know and love. They gave everything they had for everything we have today," said Minister Fantino. "Initiatives like the Memory Project Speakers Bureau give a new generation of Canadians a chance to understand our nation's past, one story at a time. It gives future generations one more way to remember."
An initiative of Historica Canada, the Memory Project gives Veterans and current Canadian Armed Forces members the opportunity to share their stories of military service, through its online archive and volunteer speakers bureau. The Memory Project Archive welcomes every living Veteran of the Second World War and the Korean War to preserve their memories through oral interviews and digitized memorabilia, with more than 2,800 testimonials recorded to date. Through the Memory Project Speakers Bureau, Veterans and active service members share their military experiences in classrooms and community groups across Canada, reaching 1.5 million Canadians since 2001. Hear their stories at thememoryproject.com.
"Our speakers bring first-hand experience of service to their country, sacrifices made, friends lost and lessons learned," said Anthony Wilson-Smith, President of Historica Canada. "We thank them for all they have done, and all they continue to do."
"I am pleased to be a part of the Memory Project Speakers Bureau as it has brought more awareness of the experiences and sacrifices that Veterans have made for our country," said Doug Finney, Korean War Veteran. "This project has helped students understand the importance of honouring Veterans".
While at the event, Minister Fantino took the opportunity to announce that through the Community Engagement Partnership Fund, Historica Canada (formerly known as Historica-Dominion Institute) is receiving up to $150,000 over three years to support its bilingual educational "Canada Remembers Theme Week" program during Veterans' Week, and up to $150,000 over three years for its weekly bilingual "Peace Module" at Encounters with Canada.
The Community Engagement Partnership Fund, administered by Veterans Affairs Canada, provides funding for non-profit organizations, educational institutions and other groups interested in planning remembrance initiatives. For more information on this funding program, visit veterans.gc.ca.
This Veterans' Week, your challenge is to show you remember. Wearing a poppy, attending a local Remembrance Day ceremony and changing your Facebook profile picture to a poppy are all ways to remember and honour Veterans. Visit veterans.gc.ca/iremember to get interactive and share your thoughts or to find commemorative events in your community.
SOURCE: Veterans Affairs Canada
For further information:
Media Relations Advisor
Veterans Affairs Canada
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of Veterans Affairs