National Project Aimed at Promoting Canada-France Relations Gets Noticed on Parliament Hill

A project, aimed at promoting ties between Canada and France, is gaining traction in our nation’s capital.  In April and May project co-founders Dr. Kevin McCormick and Marc Serré, both of Greater Sudbury, had the opportunity to present their Canada Heritage France Initiative to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Her Excellency Kareen Rispal, the Ambassador of France to Canada, as well as French delegates from the France-Canada Interparliamentary Association. The meetings come shortly after Prime Minister Trudeau’s official visit to France last month, when he and French President Emmanuel Macron announced France-Canada partnerships on climate and culture.

“Canada and France are more than allies, we are two inseparable friends. We share many values. Whether it is the language, the culture, the civil law or the way of thinking and doing, we join. Our common history has led us to forge close ties over the centuries. It was all natural for Canada to support France in the clashes that marked the 20th century. I am pleased to support the Canada-France Heritage Initiative to help preserve the memory of the sacrifice and contribution of our veterans.” –The Honourable Denis Paradis, MP, Canadian Chair of the Canada-France Interparliamentary Association

The Canada Heritage France Initiative was officially launched by McCormick and Serré in recognition of our country’s 150th anniversary, and the nation of France’s continued friendship and support. Through presentations of Canadian and French military artifacts, the Canada Heritage France Initiative aims to raise awareness of the excellent Canada-France relations that exist between both countries, and highlight their common history, culture and shared values.

The Canada Heritage France Initiative is an extension of Project Honour and Preserve – an international initiative founded by Dr. Kevin McCormick, to raise awareness of the sacrifices and contributions made by Canadian Veterans while bringing public attention to important dates in Canadian Military history. In 2016, Dr. McCormick was named a recipient of the Minister of Veterans Affairs Commendation, in recognition of his ongoing support of the Canadian Military including his commitment to Project Honour and Preserve.

“It has been a great honour to meet and share our vision with Prime Minister Trudeau and the French delegates of the France-Canada Interparliamentary Association.  Marc and I also had the privilege of attending the Vimy Foundation reception, in honour of the 101st anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge, and present French military artifacts to Ambassador Rispal. It is through presentations like these, to people and organizations that represent Canada and our dear friend and ally France, that we are able to promote the Canada Heritage France Initiative while honouring and celebrating the historic and contemporary ties that bind our great countries.” -Dr. Kevin McCormick, President and Vice-Chancellor of Huntington University

“Canada and France are two countries that share not only an Official Language, but also a shared history and shared values which have made our liberal democracies as diverse, vibrant, and strong as they are today. As a Franco-Ontarian, I am proud to collaborate with Dr. Kevin McCormick to promote the Canada Heritage France Initiative and by doing so, increasing public awareness of the important contributions that Canada has made on the cultural and historical development of France and vice versa.”  -Marc Serré, MP for Nickel Belt

Since its official launch, the Canada Heritage France Initiative has presented historical military artifacts, including war medals and framed antique prints, to various leaders in Canadian politics, education and broadcasting.  Recipients have been recognized for their work in promoting French culture and/or history in Canada. Past recipients include The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage, Daniel Giroux, President of Collège Boréal, and Léo Lefebvre, the first Director of Education  for the Conseil scolaire catholique du Nouvel-Ontario.

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