Migration and Settlement
The first Albanians arrived in Canada at the beginning of the century, following internal pre-war revolutionary upheavals. Few immigrated to Canada after WWII. Most of the post-war Albanian immigrants settled in either Montréal or Toronto. Some found jobs in Calgary and a few in small communities in Ontario (eg, Peterborough).
After the inter-ethnic conflict in the former Yugoslavia between ethnic Albanians and Serbian military and police forces, many Albanians left Kosovo as REFUGEES. Some have come to Canada, and in 1999 the Canadian government created a program to offer safe haven to 7000 Albanian Kosovar refugees.
However, they continue to appreciate their ethnic heritage and their Albanian national history, even though their ancestors may have left Albania several centuries ago. Those Albanians from Albania proper are active in their business and social organizations. They are frequently found in the food service industry.
Social and Cultural Life
According to the 2006 census, there were 22 395 Albanians in Canada, of which 11 385 (51%) were located in Toronto. This is an approximation because it has been shown that 2nd- and 3rd-generation Canadians of Albanian origin may not specifically name their ethnic background. Therefore, the real number of Albanians in Canada remains an estimate, and their sociocultural activities and festivals for the most part represent local communities and groups of families. Albanians are strongly patriarchal, and often live in extended family households.
Albanians have rich folkloric traditions, especially music, dance and traditional clothing.
Author VLADISLAV A. TOMOVIÇ, Revised: EDIT PETROVIC
Links to Other Sites
Canadian Multiculturalism Day
Canadian Heritage's guide to celebrating Canadian Multiculturalism Day.
PASSAGES TO CANADA
Immigrants to Canada from around the world have encountered many hardships, opportunities, and successes as they set out to establish a better life for themselves and their families in their adopted country. Listen to some of their personal stories at the "Passages to Canada" website. From the Historica-Dominion Institute.
Encyclopedia of Canada's Peoples
The website for the "Encyclopedia of Canada's Peoples." Click on the links for feature articles about Canada's many multicultural communities, access to their extensive digital archives collection, learning modules, and much more. From "Multicultural Canada."
Ethnocultural Portrait of Canada
This website offers Canadian population data (2006) by ethnic origin. Also, find information for individual provinces and territories by clicking the "Select a view" window above the chart. For more information, click on the "Ethnocultural Portrait of Canada" link at the top of the page. From the website for Statistics Canada.
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