February 18, 2011
Government of Canada Tackles Violence Against Immigrant Women and Girls in Edmonton
Minister Rona Ambrose is flanked by community leaders at the Edmonton Interfaith Centre. From left to right, Dr. Zohra Husaini, Director, Indo-Canadian Women's Association; Jagjeet Bhardwaj, Board Member, Indo-Canadian Women's Association; Mary Fiakpui, Catholic Social Services; Nasim Zahir, Family Services Coordinator, Changing Together; Mana Ali, Edmonton Mennonite Centre for Newcomers; Josephine Pallard, Exec. Director, Changing Together; Acting S/Sgt. Roxanne McKean, Edmonton Police; and Gita Das, Vice President, Indo-Canadian Women's Association.
The Honourable Rona Ambrose, Minister of Public Works and Government Services and Minister for Status of Women, announced Government of Canada support for a project that addresses violence against women and girls.
"As Canadians we believe in a peaceful and safe society that doesn't tolerate violence of any kind towards women, including culturally motivated violence," said Minister Ambrose. "This project is one we are proud to support as young women will be educated on recognizing and preventing these intolerable acts of violence."
Since becoming Minister for Status of Women, Minister Ambrose has met with diverse communities across Canada to discuss potential action and to encourage groups to apply for funding through Status of Women Canada's Women's Program.
The Indo-Canadian Women's Association is receiving $241,000 for its 24-month project, Elimination of Harmful Cultural Practices: A Community-Centred Approach for Education and Action. This initiative will empower immigrant girls and young women in Edmonton. It will also develop strategies for engaging community organizations, the legal community and law-enforcement agencies to better respond to the issue of harmful cultural practices.
"We are very pleased to have the Government of Canada's support for this innovative project, which will empower and inform young women and girls in Edmonton," said Ms. Anjali Agarwal, President of the Indo-Canadian Women's Association. "Through this project, these young women and girls will gain important tools and skills that will help them to recognize and respond to harmful cultural practices."
The Government of Canada is committed to supporting worthwhile projects like this because they yield concrete results for women and girls in Canada while strengthening our families, our communities and our country. Through Status of Women Canada, the government's support for community-based projects has nearly doubled since 2006-2007, growing from $10.8 million to $19 million, its highest level ever.