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 August 2016 Newsletter
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It's Summertime!

Hard to believe it's already August. PCHC-MoM has had a wonderful year so far, as we work towards our dream of establishing a museum of migration on the west coast of Canada. Read on to find out more about new developments with PCHC, and our upcoming plans!

Please note that our emails are now being sent from <office.pchc@pchc-mom.ca>. Make sure you add this contact information to your accounts to make sure you receive our updates!

In this Newsletter You Will Find:
- A Letter from our President, Winnie Cheung
Komagata Maru Incident
- Family History with a Smartphone
- ISSCO Conference & PCHC Volunteers
- Welcome Lieutenant Colonel George Ing

- Welcome New Members!
- Upcoming: Guided Tour of the Chung Collection by Dr. Wallace Chung

- Mark Your Calendar's for the 2016 AGM

A Letter from the President

Congratulations to Vice President Harb Gill of PCHC for his leadership at the Komagata Maru Heritage Foundation. Having Prime Minister Justin Trudeau apologize in Parliament in May to descendants of the Komagata Maru passengers marked the beginning of community healing. I was honoured to witness two recent ceremonies at the Komagata Maru Memorial Wall, a short boat ride from where the ship was docked at Coal Harbour 102 years ago. Descendants of the passengers and community leaders spoke of the struggles and triumphs in turning this dark chapter into an inspiration for a more inclusive and just society.

While the museum is yet to be built, active intercultural and intergeneration learning grows as new programming ideas are piloted monthly. In April we conducted our first intercultural walking tour – From Coal Harbour to Chinatown – with Cultural Ambassadors Paneet Singh and Hayne Wai telling the stories of pioneers of Indian and Chinese heritage. In June our Smartphone Workshop Series concluded with excellent feedback and requests for repeat offerings. In July, 36 PCHC volunteers responded to our call, enabling us to: (1) put on a mini exhibit of Rare Artefacts from the Ing Association, (2) serve at panel sessions throughout the International Society for the Study of Chinese Overseas Conference, and (3) host a lunch and dialogue on Cuban-Chinese Connections.

To thank our volunteers and voting members, an exclusive guided tour by Dr. Wallace Chung himself will be offered on August 26. To encourage you to remain on our mailing list, we have kept a few seats for our newsletter subscribers. Stay tuned for an exciting Fall program featuring our strategic partner – the Chinese Canadian Military Museum – and their new exhibit which will accompany the vets in marking the 75th Anniversary of the Battle of Hong Kong on the other side of the Pacific in December.

Have fun and keep learning!

Winnie L. CHEUNG

Historic Apology for the Komagata Maru

This year, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made a formal apology in the House of Commons for the Komagata Maru Incident of 1914. That year, the Canadian government denied entry to the country to hundreds of Sikh, Muslim, and Hindu passengers, forcing them to wait in Vancouver's Burrard Inlet for months before ultimately turning them away to a violent fate back in India.

On August 7, 2016, Federal Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan unveiled a new plaque in Vancouver's Coal Harbour neighbourhood in order to recognize and memorialize the incident so that Canadians can remember the past and move forward to prevent anything like this from happening again.

Sabha Ghani, a history teacher in Burnaby, mentioned in her speech the importance of this incident to Canada. "It is important for Canadians," she declared, "to see that evolution of our society at the turn of the century from a racist nation, to a country that celebrated its’ multicultural heritage by the end of that same century." See a transcript of her moving speech here.

Minister Harjit Sajjan is pictured above with PCHC Directors George Ing, Tineke Hellwig, Winnie Cheung, and Harbhajan Gill.

Family History with a Smartphone

In collaboration with the UBC Asian Library,  PCHC piloted a series of workshops from April to June.  Entitled "Family History with a Smartphone", it aims at teaching participants how to record and preserve oral family histories with accessible technology. Thanks to our great team of facilitators and students trained at the UBC Asian Canadian Asian Migration Studies program, participants learned skills such as interviewing, filming, and editing footage. Apparently this series has inspired many to speak to their elders and begin preserving their stories, to document the struggles and triumphs of their forebears in Canada.

Requests for more workshops in the future are being considered. A great example of an oral history project produced by one of the participants can be viewed here. Created by Dan Seto, "My Mom: YouTube Cooking Instructor" tells stories about his mother's cooking, which plays such an intimate and important role in their family and in their experience growing up as Chinese-Canadians. Congratulations Dan for producing such a wonderful documentary in English, which is authentically spiced up with Toisan!

 

ISSCO Conference and PCHC Volunteers

PCHC was thrilled to be a part of the 2016 International Society for the Study of Chinese Overseas (ISSCO) conference. With the help of over 35 volunteers, we mounted a mini version of an exhibition on the Ing Association Collection, supported conference organizers in delivering a fabulous program, and hosted two post-conference events in Chinatown. Our volunteers were able to talk to delegates from around the world. Academics from Asia, Australia, America and Europe stopped by our table and expressed great interest in our dream to build a Museum of Migration!

A big THANK YOU to our volunteers who dedicated their time to representing PCHC at the conference. Your hard work was much appreciated!

"I am impressed by the caliber of people in your team of volunteers!" - Prof. Glen Peterson, Co-Chair, ISSCO Conference Organizing Committee

For more on volunteers, click here.

For photos taken by Josie Chow, our volunteer photographer, click here.

To re-live the conference through awesome day-to-day recaps compiled by Dominique Bautista, see here:

Welcome LCol George Ing

PCHC is excited to announce that retired Lieutenant Colonel George Ing has been appointed to our Board of Directors! He is taking the seat of Founding President Raymond Lee (Calgary), who has stepped down from the Board to become an Honourary Advisor of PCHC along with the Honourable Dr. Vivienne Poy (Toronto) and Elder Larry Grant (Musqueam/Vancouver).
George Ing, originally from Victoria, joined the Royal Canadian Armed Forces in 1955.
During his 32 year long career, he obtained a BSc from St Mary’s University and a MBA from George Washington University. George was a Commanding Officer twice, and he has also represented Canada at NATO. In 1974 he was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and retired in 1987. George then worked for eight years as a Project Manager for the Federal Government, and was later a Quality Assurance Manager for the Business Development Bank. He has served as Vice President of St James Social Services, Director of Vancouver Asian Heritage Month Society, President of the Chinese Canadian Veteran Group, and Vice President of the Chinese Canadian Military Museum Society. Welcome to the team, George!

Welcome New Members

PCHC is now accepting new voting members! Benefits of membership include voting rights at Annual General Meetings, invitations to exclusive events, and more! We have voting members signing up from across the country. Pictured above with our CBA Conference Sponsor Jason Cummings of DCIS is Avi Gomberg, our first voting member who signed up in April. Avi founded the law firm Gomberg Dalfen in Montreal. A warm welcome to Avi and all our new members!

If you are interested in becoming a voting member, please click here.

Upcoming: Guided Tour of the Chung Collection

This is an exclusive event for our active volunteers and members! However, a few spots have been reserved to reward our newsletters subscribers. Claim your spot now by contacting Eleanor Munk at <pchcmom.intern@gmail.com>!

Mark Your Calendars!

This year, PCHC-Mom's AGM is tentatively booked for November 19th, 2016. Members, please mark your calendars for this date to partake in this exciting event!

Hope to see you all out in the community!
Copyright © 2016 Pacific Canada Heritage Centre Museum of Migration, All rights reserved.


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