Guy Rodgers speaking at Press Conference at Concordia University (QUESCREN) on April 23, 2018
Photo by Marc Bourcier

May is a joyful month, when the last snow melts and flowers burst in profusion. For organizations such as ELAN, last year’s projects have been laid to rest and it is time to get to work on new ones. During the past few weeks, we received confirmation of three new projects for 2018/19: an expansion of the ACE Initiative, a third edition of Stateof the Arts, and a fourth round of Arts Alive Québec.

Funding for a larger version of the ACE Initiative was announced at Concordia University on April 23rd. As I remarked at the press conference, there could not have been a more propitious date to launch a major project devoted to arts and education in the English language. The new Secretariat for New Relations with English-Speaking Quebecers is supporting five community-building projects. ELAN’s funding over two years will enable us to expand the ACE Initiative into more schools and enable more artists to develop projects and relationships with educators and students. During the next few weeks, we will be inviting school, communities, and artists to send us an expression of interest to develop projects. If you are interested in the links between the arts and education, and wish to be part of the on-going ACE conversation, send an email to

The founding event that created ELAN in 2004 was the Quebec Arts Summit. More than 100 artists gathered to discuss community needs and cast a vision for the future. Seven years later ELAN organized State of the Arts, which brought together more than 150 artists and cultural workers, from all disciplines and many regions of Quebec, to revisit community challenges and opportunities. Another seven years later, and ELAN has received support from the Department of Canadian Heritage’s Strategic Fund to bring the community together once again, using technology and a multi-meeting format, in order to include a larger and more diverse group of artists and cultural workers. This work will begin in earnest next fall and will continue throughout the winter. We will keep you posted as detailed plans develop so that your voice can be heard.

We are also thrilled that the Department of Canadian Heritage’s Quebec regional fund decided to support Arts Alive! Québec for a fourth year. The value of this project to regional communities, as well as to artists, was clearly demonstrated by the dozens of letters of support that accompanied ELAN’s grant application. Arts Alive! Québec festivals will begin in June and will continue until September. It is going to be an exciting summer and a very full year.

Guy Rodgers
Executive Director

460 Sainte-Catherine West
Suites 706 & 708, 917 (Quebec Relations)
Montreal, Quebec, Canada H3B 1A7
Phone: (514)-935-3312

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ELAN is an official minority language organization within a country that recognizes two languages as official. ELAN is located in Tiohtiak:ke, the original name for Montreal in Kanien’kéha, the language of the Mohawk—also known as Mooniyang, which is the Anishinaabeg name given to the city by the Algonquin. While we are based in this city, our projects have also taken place in many regions across Quebec.

We acknowledge the colonial origin of English and French in Canada, and recognize that both languages benefit from official status throughout the land. The province that we know as Quebec is an amalgamation of the traditional territories of the Innu and Inuit nations, Algonquian nations, as well as the Mohawk nations of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy. Kanien’kéha and Anishinaabeg are but two of the original languages of this province; Atikamekw, Cree, Inuktitut, and Innu-aimun are also among the many Indigenous languages spoken across Quebec as majority languages, all well before French and English.

ELAN acknowledges the important work being done by First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples to revive the traditional languages of these territories, and their advocacy for the official status of Indigenous languages.