The Government of Canada Takes Part in Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation's Harmony Festival

The Buddhist Channel, May 5, 2008

VANCOUVER, BRTISH COLUMBIA (Canada) -- Volunteers with the Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation Canada will be doing their part to actively fulfill the spirit of Canadian multiculturalism by taking part in the Harmony Festival 2008. The Festival will focus on the issues of global warming and will call ordinary citizens into action to help reduce carbon emissions.

The Honourable David Emerson, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Pacific Gateway and the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics, and Member of Parliament (Vancouver Kingsway), on behalf of the Honourable Jason Kenney, Secretary of State (Multiculturalism and Canadian Identity), will attend the Buddhist Compassion Relief Tzu Chi Foundation Canada's Harmony Festival tomorrow.

"The Tzu Chi Canada volunteers have been contributing, both financially and physically, to making their communities a better place," said Secretary of State Kenney. "The Government of Canada considers this country's diversity to be one of our greatest assets, and we are committed to strengthening our pluralism and national cohesion."

"The Government of Canada is committed to the full participation of all Canadians in every area of the country," said Minister Emerson. "We will continue to work hard in collaboration with all partners to strengthen the sense of belonging of all Canadians."

"It is only through personal commitment that we are able to achieve harmony with ourselves, our community, and the planet," said Gary Ho, CEO of Tzu Chi Canada. "By choosing the theme 'The Planet is in Your Hands,' we hope to mobilize the public into action. By making small, everyday changes-such as turning down the tap and using a cotton towel when we wash and dry our hands-we will collectively produce great results."

Tzu Chi Foundation Canada is a registered charitable organization and a member of the Taiwan-based Tzu Chi Foundation, which was founded in 1966. Since its inception in Vancouver in 1992, the Tzu Chi Foundation Canada has contributed more than $18 million and 1 million volunteer hours to local communities in Metro Vancouver, Metro Toronto, and Montréal. Tzu Chi Foundation Canada has also participated in several international joint relief projects with other chapters.

The Government of Canada is committed to reaching out to all Canadians and is developing lasting relationships with ethnic and religious communities in Canada. It encourages these communities to participate fully in Canadian society by enhancing their level of economic, social, and cultural integration.