Canadian Heritage

Canadian Heritage

September 23, 2009 16:20 ET

Government of Canada Investments to Ensure a Strong Presence for French at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Sept. 23, 2009) - The Honourable James Moore, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, today announced the Government of Canada's support for the creation of the Place de la Francophonie in Vancouver for the 2010 Winter Games. The Minister also took the opportunity to announce government funding for the Franco Medias 2010 and for a project to house bilingual volunteers at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games.

"Our Government has taken action to support and promote our two official languages and the vitality of official-language minority communities. We have said repeatedly that we want French-speaking Canada to have a strong presence at the 2010 Games," said Minister Moore. "Like the $7.7 million announced last week for translation, bilingual signage, and medal ceremonies, today's investments are further proof of our Government's commitment to make Canada's Games bilingual."

Place de la Francophonie is a major initiative that will ensure a high-profile presence for Canada's French language and culture during the Vancouver Olympic Winter Games. It will host a series of events to give visitors a genuine Francophone cultural experience that is authentic and diverse.

"Since the eyes of the entire world will turn to Canada during the 2010 Vancouver Games, it was important to create this showcase to promote the country's linguistic duality and highlight the French language and culture in Canada. We are pleased about this support from the Government of Canada for the Place de la Francophonie 2010 in Vancouver, which underscores the importance of this major project," said William Fox, President of the Corporation of the Place de la Francophonie 2010.

The Franco Medias 2010 project by the Alliance des radios communautaires du Canada aims to give 24 young journalists aged 18 to 25-including at least 18 participants from Francophone minority communities-the tools needed to report on the 2010 Games and related events. The reports could be carried by up to 250 Francophone media outlets, as well as on the Internet.

"We are delighted that the Government of Canada, through this contribution, recognizes the importance of the Franco Medias 2010 project-not only for the young Canadians of all backgrounds taking part in this initiative, but also for the entire Canadian Francophonie," said Michele Leblanc, President of the Alliance des radios communautaires du Canada.

The Federation des francophones de la Colombie-Britannique's bilingual volunteer accommodation project at the 2010 Games aims to give bilingual volunteers a unique and pleasant experience at the Games. To this end, these volunteers will have a place to live, support for the duration of their stay, and access to bilingual and French-language activities.

The Government of Canada has provided funding of $1.2 million to the Corporation of La Place de la francophonie 2010 through the Department of Canadian Heritage's Development of Official-Language Communities Program ( and $500,000 through Western Economic Diversification Canada's Economic Development Initiative. Funding of $385,000 is being provided to the Alliance des radios communautaires du Canada under the Development of Official-Language Communities Program. This program aims to foster the development of Canada's minority Anglophone and Francophone communities and enable them to participate fully in all aspects of Canadian life. Funding of $21,768 is being provided to the Federation des francophones de la Colombie-Britannique through the Strategic Funds (, Community Life component, of the Official Languages Support Program of the Department of Canadian Heritage.

Like the Roadmap for Canada's Linguistic Duality 2008-2013: Acting for the Future (, support for these projects reaffirms this Government's commitment to both of Canada's official languages and the vitality of official-language minority communities. The Roadmap is an unprecedented government-wide investment of $1.1 billon over five years. The Economic Development Initiative is part of the Roadmap.

This year also marks the 40th anniversary ( of the adoption of Canada's first Official Languages Act (

This news release is available on the Internet at under Media Room.

Contact Information

  • Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage
    and Official Languages
    Deirdra McCracken - Director of Communications
    Canadian Heritage
    Media Relations