A category dedicated to the history of Japanese immigrants to Victoria and the west coast.

Remember – Recount – Reconcile

On Saturday October 29th, the Ucluelet & Area Historical Society is holding a round-table story-telling event, bringing together families of all three ethnic groups affected when the Japanese Canadians were removed from the coast, and particularly from the fishing village of Ucluelet where they made up one half the population, while  First Nations plus White settlers were the other half.

We invite survivors of that time, descendants and others, to meet for the day at the Ucluelet Community Centre, 500 Matterson Drive, at 9 a.m. on Saturday, October 29, 2022 or to participate by Zoom.

Our concept for the day is to remember and share our stories as a path to reconciliation

Please join us in person or by Zoom on Saturday, October 29th, for an all-day Round-Table storytelling event on the effects of the removal in 1942 of Japanese Canadians from the West Coast, Ucluelet in particular.

This event is open to all interested people, whether they choose to actively share stories and memories, or to listen and learn. Our facilitator for the event will be Paul Kariya, a member of the BC Redress Negotiations Committee and the society overseeing the $100 Million Redress Fund. Paul grew up in Ucluelet and has returned to live part-time in the community.

TO REGISTER:

Email the UAHS:    info@ucluelethistory.ca  with name and email address

OR register by telephone 250-726-5000

OR send mail to UAHS, PO Box 397, Ucluelet BC V0R 3A0, with name and telephone number

There is no fee for the event. Complimentary light lunch provided. Participants may join in by ZOOM.

Please let us know if you are attending in person by Friday, Oct. 21, so the caterer will have the correct lunch numbers. Those registering for Zoom attendance by Friday Oct 28 will have the Zoom link emailed to them.

When you register, you may also like to add why you are interested in attending. Feel free to ask questions.

We encourage participants to bring family stories, and any memorabilia, such as photos and letters.

The day will begin with a traditional welcome from the Ucluelet First Nation, a welcome from the Ucluelet and Area Historical Society, and an introduction to the day’s proceedings by the facilitator. After introductions, there will be three short introductory talks, on the perspectives of the three Ucluelet Community groups of that time: The First Nations Community, the Japanese Canadians, and the White settlers, on the pre-WWII period.

This will be followed by a break, and continued facilitated conversations on the period of the actual removal. After lunch discussion will continue with focus on the period following the return of the few to the coast. The aim is for a relaxed environment in which participants will feel comfortable sharing their perspectives. The day will wrap up with evaluation of success reaching objectives set by participants at the start, and ideas for any next steps.

Anglican Healing Fund for Japanese Canadians – Programs are Open

An update from the
Anglican Healing Fund for Japanese Canadians

Applications are now open

If you are a survivor or a survivor family member of Mr. Gordon Goichi Nakayama’s abuse you are eligible to apply for healing funds. Counselling support is being offered immediately and we have a counsellor available who is able to help you with your application, whenever required.

Education grants will be collected and reviewed every semester. Education grants are valued at up to $10,000 and can be applied for retroactively to June 15, 2015. If you were undertaking postsecondary education on or after June 15, 2015, and are a survivor or survivor family member then you are eligible to apply for an education grant.

Apply Today

 


June 25, 2022 11AM PDT
National Outreach Online Meeting

Pre-registration is required to attend our National Outreach Meeting. We will be discussing Healing Fund application forms and our other supports moving forward. Please Join us for this important meeting!

Register Here

Guest Speaker Dr. Nicholas Harrison

Dr. Harrison will speak on his personal experience with abuse and the lifelong act of healing from this trauma.

For more information his book Safe Space: A True Story of Faith, Betrayal, and the Power of the Force is for anyone who wants to understand how abuse continues to affect victims and their families long after the act.

80th Anniversary of Internment Luncheon (July 10th)

Please join us on July 10, 2022 at the 80th Anniversary of Internment Luncheon taking place at the Hotel Grand Pacific from 1:00 to 4:30. We are gathering to honour the few remaining seniors who experienced first hand the internment, dispossession and forced dispersal of Japanese Canadians during WW II. The theme of gathering is “Okagesamade” – We are who we are because of you. It is because of their strength, perseverance and stoic efforts in overcoming the hardships they endured, that we are here today. The cost of this Anniversary Luncheon will only be $15 (JC survivors are guests at no charge). This highly subsidized price is because of the generous grant we received from the JC Survivor Health & Wellness Fund. Tickets for this event can only be purchased through Eventbrite.

https://vncs-internment-luncheon.eventbrite.ca

Please join us in honouring our JC survivors on July 10, 2022.

Gorge Park Pavilion – GRAND OPENING (June 18th)

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The Grand Opening of the new Esquimalt Gorge Park Pavilion will take place on June 18, 2022 from 12:00 to 2:00 PM. Come see this beautiful Japanese inspired building which includes a historical display in the lobby which honours the Japanese Canadian history of the Gorge Park. In addition to the ribbon cutting ceremony, there will be tours of the building and the VNCS Heritage Committee will be conducting tours of the Japanese Garden. Also on hand will be representatives from the Landscapes of Injustice Project to give information about the historical display. The Grand Opening is open to the public.

BC Provincial Government Historic Announcement – Sat. May 21

The BC provincial government will be making an important historic announcement with the Japanese Canadian community on May 21, 2022. The announcement is in collaboration with local BC Japanese Canadian communities and the National Association of Japanese Canadians.

The VNCS is organizing a viewing gathering. We believe that this significant historic announcement is an event to be shared together with other members of the Japanese-Canadian community. Please join us at:

University of Victoria
David Strong Building, Room C130
Saturday, May 21, 2022
10:30 am to 12:00 pm

Hibakusha Remembrance Week

August 6th and 9th, 2020.

Hibakusha Remembrance Week — 75th anniversaries of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Communities are invited to join in Bell ringing and “making a righteous noise” at the time of dropping of the bombs.

Individuals are invited to set a reminder and take a moment to reflect… “Set a chime for those times”

On Thursday, August 6 and Sunday, August 9 church bells, hand bells and other appropriate devices are to be rung across Vancouver Island at the time the bombs exploded: 8:15 AM on August 6 and 11:50 AM on August 9.

The Victoria Nikkei Cultural Society will ring the Morioka Friendship bell on David Foster Way.

Please join us. COVID-19 protocols for safety will be followed.

Hibakusha Remembrance Week

If you are planning on coming please email tsugkurushima@gmail.com.

All are invited to take part in the online educational event:

Thursday, August 6 at noon, a live Zoom presentation with a question and answer period on the current nuclear weapons threat, nuclear weapons and religious faith, and the public health and the environmental consequences of nuclear weapons. Register here to receive the Zoom Link.


The distinguished presenters for this event are two physicians and a brilliant young student activist.

Dr. Mary-Wynne Ashford is past President of International Physicians for Prevention of Nuclear War, winner of the 1985 Nobel Peace Prize. She has twice been awarded the Governor General of Canada Award and has participated in humanitarian missions to North Korea.

Magritte Gordaneer from Victoria is a student at McGill University. She founded McGill Students for Peace and Disarmament, the university’s only student peace group. Magritte travelled to Hiroshima to participate in the Academy on Nuclear Weapons and Global Security presented by the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), winner of the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize.

Dr. Jonathan Down is President of Physicians for Global Survival. He is a pediatrician at the Queen Alexandra Centre for Children’s Health in Victoria and an adjunct professor at the University of British Columbia and University of Victoria.

Moderator for the program is Bill Geimer, US army veteran and Professor of Law Emeritus, Washington and Lee University.

Send any questions to Bill Geimer at peacevetcanada@gmail.com


The week of 2-9 August, 2020 is to be designated as Hibakusha Remembrance Week honouring the survivors of the bombings.

Find out more about the VNCS.

Esquimalt Japanese Tea House Commemoration Initiative – We Need Your Help

We need your help to have the Township of Esquimalt build a multi-purpose building at Gorge Park that commemorates the Japanese history of that park!  Please complete this online survey  to vote for the multi-purpose building that incorporates Japanese design elements, Building 1.  Below is the architectural rendering of Building 1.  It incorporates modern Japanese architectural design elements.  There is a comparable building in the Japanese Gardens in Portland (see image at the end of this post).

Esquimalt Concept Building 1 (more details available once you complete the survey).

When you complete the online survey you will have an opportunity to see more information about the buildings being proposed and you can even suggest other Japanese design elements that they should consider such as a Zen Garden, bamboo garden or sliding doors and screens.  You could even suggest a room to perform Japanese cultural demonstrations.  The Township of Esquimalt is also going to hold an Open House on September 19 at the Esquimalt Recreation Centre from 6 to 8 pm where you can speak to staff and the architects about the proposed building.  You might like to attend the Open House.  However the key action that needs to be taken is completing the survey by Sep 29.  The more support we show, the greater the probability of the of the Esquimalt council proceeding with the Japanese style building. 

We are very close to achieving our goal to have the Township of Esquimalt erect a multi-purpose building that commemorates the Japanese history of Esquimalt’s Gorge Park.  Let us not be complacent and let this once in a lifetime opportunity slip through our fingers.  Complete the survey and recruit others to do the same.  You can forward this infromation to others to vote for the Japanese style multi-purpose building.

Thank you
Tsugio Kurushima
President,
Victoria Nikkei Cultural Society

Japanese Building Design at Portland’s Japanese Garden.