|CULTURAL EXCHANGE BETWEEN SCHOOLS TO CELEBRATE MULTICULTURALISM|
MONTREAL, MARCH 20, 2006 - The English Montreal School Board (EMSB) will hold a significant cultural exchange tomorrow -- Tuesday, March 21 -- at the Centre Loisirs Sportifs de Côte-des-Neiges (4880 avenue Van Horne) from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., to celebrate multiculturalism and focus on the elimination of racism. St. Léonard’s Laurier Macdonald High School has spearheaded this initiative.
Students from nearly a dozen schools, representing the English and French public sectors as well as the Jewish, Muslim and Native Canadian communities, will participate. Among the confirmed special guest speakers are Anil Coté from the human rights organization Rights and Democracy; Kenneth Der, editor of “The Eastern Door,” a Mohawk newspaper based in Kahnawake; Dr. Victor Goldbloom from the Canadian Jewish Congress; Navid Niami from the Bahai community; Manjit Singh from the Sikh community and lecturer at McGill University; Pundit Tiwari from the Hindu community; and Dan Philip from the Black Coalition of Quebec. The day’s activities will include many student performances, ranging from speeches, music, and dance. There will also be kiosks and displays from several cultural communities.
In addition to Laurier Macdonald, other EMSB schools planning to participate are John Paul I Junior High, James Lyng High School, Rosemount High School and Laurenhill Academy. Other participating schools include from the French sector, Louis Joseph Papineau; from the Jewish community, Bialik High School; the Muslim Schools of Quebec; and the Kahnawake Survival School.
“The main purpose of this event is to bring students together, so that they can understand and appreciate each other’s cultures, and realize our common humanity,” said organizer Jake Sookhdeo, who also heads Laurier Macdonald’s Multicultural Society. “That way, they can leave with a great deal of hope and renewed energy, in order to make our small community – and by extension, the whole world – a better place to live.”
Michael J. Cohen