Multicultural PEI

Oct
19

I was in PEI for the Thanksgiving long weekend and I personally experienced a changing face of Canada. I hadn’t been there for 15 years and it was clear that the immigration tsunami that we are seeing across the country has become a reality – even in PEI and Charlottetown. Visible minorities are everywhere to be seen – both as consumers and running businesses.

At Ethnicity we have a database of information about ethnic populations so I checked out Charlottetown, only to discover that 8% of Charlottetown are visible minorities.

What I saw with my eyes was valid from the statistical basis. PEI is a small province and much like Canada they needed new consumers in order to fuel the economy. One of the ways to do this is through immigration.

If you read The Guardian, which is the local newspaper, articles about ethnic consumers are abundant. Over the weekend, one of the articles was called “Chinese immigrants show appreciation to Rotarians by sharing customs and foods during the Moon Festival.” They invited the locals to learn about the Chinese Lunar Festival through a powerpoint presentation.

There were music performances and a demonstration on how to make moon cakes and dumplings – staples of the Moon Festival. After the food preparation demonstrations, guests were invited to try it themselves — first in terms of preparing the mooncakes and dumplings and then in terms of eating them.

An article on another day talked about a business event where new immigrants, who were thinking about potentially moving to PEI, as well as those who were already living in Charlottetown, being taken in a bus across the Province to do “business speed dating”. There are a number of older individuals on the island who want to retire. The immigrants are looking for businesses to invest in. This matching opportunity gave them 15 minutes at each business to give them a taste of business investment opportunities.

As we continue to celebrate Canada’s 150th, we continue to see the changing face of Canada, including in the province where Confederation started. Multicultural truly is becoming mainstream.

Howard Lichtman
Parter, Co-Founder, Ethnicity Marketing + Advertising
EthnicityMatters.com

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