Decolonizing Memories: Takeaways from the Memories of Mogadishu Conference

By Eliana Trinaistic, Social Impact Manager The Memories of Mogadishu Conference (#MOM19), which took place at the Ottawa Art Gallery on May 4th, 2019, was curated by documentary filmmaker and second generation Somali-Canadian Asha Siad. The goal of the conference was to gather international speakers, most of them with strong ties to Somalia and Mogadishu, storytellers, historians, members of the library and archival community, as well as students of Somali origin to explore themes regarding the…

Getting Loud for Mental Health Week

According to the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), mental health is ubiquitous. Just like physical health, we all ‘have’ it; some of us may have poorer mental health, due to the presence of some mental illness, but we are all impacted by it and able to feel mental health via our wellbeing. Extending this to mental illness and disorders, if you are to prescribe to a relatively newer way of thinking among psychologists and other…

Letter to Premier Doug Ford Regarding Cuts to LAO

Please find below, a letter to Premier Doug Ford, from MCIS Executive Director Latha Sukumar, written in response to the Legal Aid Ontario (LAO) funding cuts announced as part of the 2019 budget. April 10, 2019 Honourable Premier Doug Ford Government of Ontario doug.ford@pc.ola.org Honourable Premier Doug Ford Re: Proposed cuts to Legal Aid funding for Refugees and Immigrants I am writing to express my concerns about the proposed cuts to provincial legal aid funding…

English 101: The Evolution of English, from Shakespeare to Sitcom

By Alanna Quinn, RFP Coordinator Shall I Compare Thee To A Summer’s Day? By: William Shakespeare Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate. Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May, And summer’s lease hath all too short a date. Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines, And often is his gold complexion dimmed; And every fair from fair sometime declines, By chance, or nature’s…

Breaking down Chinese on Chinese Language Day

By: Hongyan (Jack) Xu – Marketing Manager & Conference Interpreter In 2010, the United Nations declared “Language Days at the United Nations”, to celebrate official languages used at the UN. April 20th was declared Chinese Language Day, a date taken from the Chinese lunar calendar called “Guyu”, or the “Rain of Grains”. Legend has it, a man named Cangjie on this day invented the first written Chinese characters based on animal tracks. His wisdom moved…

First, Do No Harm: How Language Plays an Essential and Life-Saving Role in Health Care

By Sanah Matadar, Social Media Coordinator I’m going to mention something and I guarantee I correctly guess what comes to your mind. Ready? Okay, here it goes: Health. You’re thinking of Doctors in some way or form, right? Perhaps you’re remembering that six-month check-up you have to schedule, or thinking back to when one of your loved ones was in the hospital, and the doctors were explaining what was happening; their reports might as well…

A Personal Reflection on Women’s History Month

By Latha Sukumar, Executive Director When I was a young girl, my mother used to take us to the village where my uncle and his family lived. It was a village steeped in rituals and practices that I had never witnessed growing up in Mumbai. On one of these visits my mother moved outside of the house, into a little room by the well; it was a pretty shabby room, with just a small light…

Becoming Storytellers for the Day: Recapping #StoriesofUs

By Sanah Matadar, Social Media Coordinator In early March MCIS partnered with the Department of Imaginary Affairs (DIA) to host newcomer interpreters and translators for the Stories of Us workshop. The goal of the workshop was three-fold: 1) Empower newcomers by providing them with an open space to share their stories. Allowing them them to do so should help participants feel that, as Canadian citizens, they have a voice 2) Create resource books from the…

Journée Internationale de la Francophonie: Qu’est-ce que le Français Constitute pour Moi?

Par Louis Labrecque, Traducteur Français Qu’est-ce que le français constitue pour moi? Disons qu’on éprouve toujours un certain attachement envers la langue qui nous a fait connaître l’univers. Enfant, j’ouvrais les encyclopédies Larousse de la bibliothèque paternelle et j’y découvrais tout simplement le monde! Je lisais tout ce que je pouvais sur la mythologie grecque – dont j’avais reconstitué toutes les généalogies des nombreuses divinités helléniques, les sciences et même la musique. Je connaissais déjà…

Non-Profit Innovators – We Need You!

By Eliana Trinaistic, Social Impact Manager “All models are wrong, but some are useful.” — George E. P. Box Over the past couple of years the Government of Canada has made some significant moves in terms of accelerating innovation in the social sector. First, in 2017 they appointed the Co-Creation Steering Group, to guide the development of a Canadian Social Innovation and Social Finance Strategy. After a year of consultations, the Group presented its recommendations…