(flickr.com)

Adrian Dix, Minister of Health has said that “This proclamation celebrates French language and proudly reflects the contributions made by French-speaking citizens to the social and economic life of the province,” Dix said. “Our government is taking steps towards greater recognition of French-speaking British Columbians and investing in services that will make their lives better. Today, I am proud to highlight our government’s commitment to enhancing services in French, with our historic allocation of funding to the Francophone Affairs Program.”

Budget 2018 provides an additional $250,000 to support and promote linguistic vitality of the Francophonie. This is the first time since 2001, when B.C. signed its first agreement with the federal government on French language services, that provincial dollars have been designated to the Francophone Affairs Program.

Dix recognized the Fédération des francophones de la Colombie-Britannique (FFCB), in appreciation of its efforts to improve access to French language services in the province.

“It’s a great honour for the Fédération des francophones de la Colombie-Britannique, including myself, to receive this award,” said Padminee Chundunsing, présidente of the FFCB. “Together, we’ve worked hard to build a strong and candid working relationship with various levels of government to position ourselves as an essential community partner.”

Projects the B.C. government has supported include increasing French language materials in public libraries, supporting the delivery of municipal early-childhood French language programs, and translating materials in various areas, including justice, health, elder care and tourism.

B.C. Francophonie Day will begin with the raising of the Franco-Columbian flag outside the B.C. Parliament Buildings.