Nova Scotia launches African Heritage Month

The launch of the province’s African Heritage Month brought celebrations across Nova Scotia on Wednesday.

In Halifax, the launch featured the unveiling of a new African Heritage poster.

The theme this year is Our History Is Your History, with the goal of recognizing the stories of African Nova Scotians and their connection to the past.

The theme fits with the United Nations International Decade for People of African Descent and focuses on full inclusion of African Nova Scotians in all aspects of society.

Russell Grosse, executive director of the Black Cultural Center for Nova Scotia, says it’s important to educate people on African Nova Scotian history because it’s part of all Nova Scotian history.

“African Nova Scotians (are) a strong part of history in Nova Scotia and so the theme Our History Is Your History celebrates that, celebrates our shared contributions, our shared history in the province being one of the founding cultures. African Nova Scotians have made great contributions to the fabric that makes Nova Scotia,” said Grosse.

The new African Heritage poster will feature a quilt, which represents how African Nova Scotians told stories and passed down their family history, and images on the quilt feature African Nova Scotians who have contributed to the growth of the province.

Lt.-Gov. Arthur LeBlanc was in attendance for the celebrations, along with Minister of African Nova Scotian Affairs Tony Ince, to recognize African Heritage Month.

“What’s happening in society, there is a shift happening in the way people see things culturally. That shift has given us an opportunity to really speak to all the opportunities and the learning, the awareness of self, of communities, of their participation — because they’re all interwoven,” said Ince on Tuesday.

This year’s theme builds on the vision of reconciliation and the goal of understanding each other as a community, as well as honouring the contributions made by African Nova Scotians.

There will be events across the province celebrating African Heritage Month from Cape Breton to Digby, and posters are now available for order.

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