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January 15, 2014
For immediate release

Conferences benefitting from PEI 2014 Fund to encourage dialogue

Tourism and Culture

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Two conferences coming to PEI in 2014 will benefit from a PEI 2014 Fund grant. The 2014 Heritage Canada Annual National Conference and Guardians of Confederation: Leaders of Tomorrow – a special segment of the 2014 Conference on Teaching Canada’s History being hosted by the University of Prince Edward Island, have received large grants.

“We are honoured to be hosting such prestigious conferences in Prince Edward Island in 2014 as we mark the 150th anniversary of the Charlottetown Conference,” says Minister of Tourism and Culture, Robert Henderson. “The goals of these conferences align perfectly with the guiding principles of PEI 2014 as we honour the past, celebrate the present and plan a bold tomorrow.”

The Heritage Canada Foundation’s annual national conference is the largest heritage conservation conference in Canada, attracting 300-350 delegates. The conference is being held in Charlottetown in October 2014 and will be a signature national event highlighting PEI and Canadian heritage, and making special reference to the delegates of the 1864 Charlottetown Conference and PEI’s place in Confederation. The conference will be comprised of tours and workshops in Charlottetown and rural PEI, keynote speakers, and special events like the Heritage Canada Foundation’s national awards ceremony.

“Holding our conference in the Birthplace of Confederation during this important anniversary year is quite fitting,” says Executive Director of the PEI Museum & Heritage Foundation, David Keenlyside. “This will be a very rewarding conference that, among other things, will discuss the connection between heritage and economic renewal and environmental sustainability, and foster collaboration between heritage and non-heritage groups.”

In November 2014, the University of Prince Edward Island will host the conference portion of its Guardians of Confederation – Leaders of Tomorrow project. Organizers will select a diverse contingent of high school students from across Canada early in 2014 to participate in a unique opportunity to become the “Guardians of Confederation.” Paired with UPEI student mentors, participants will gather online in the lead-up to the in-person conference in order to re-contextualize the world of 1864 and questions surrounding confederation. This project coincides with UPEI hosting the Conference on Teaching Canada's History in partnership with the Association for Canadian Studies (ACS).

“The University of Prince Edward Island had a vision to bring together high school students from across the country to explore where Canada is today and what we will look like in another 150 years. We are extremely pleased that PEI 2014 is investing in our idea to develop Guardians of Confederation in this group of young leaders,” said UPEI Coordinator of Canadian Studies Sharon Myers, chair of the Guardians of Confederation Organizing Committee. “We are looking forward to the legacies that the lead-up work and the conference itself will create throughout Canada and UPEI is excited to host these Guardians in the birthplace of Confederation.”

In 2014, Canadians will mark the 150th anniversary (Sesquicentennial) of the historic 1864 Charlottetown Conference, which paved the way to Confederation. PEI 2014 Inc. is facilitating the planning, promotion and implementation of the Sesquicentennial celebrations. The PEI 2014 celebrations are made possible through generous support from the Government of Canada, Government of Prince Edward Island, and the City of Charlottetown. The year-long and province-wide PEI 2014 program of events will honour the past, celebrate the present and plan a bold tomorrow.

Media Contact: Patricia Devine
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