What does it mean to be Francophone in Canada?

Immigrants and artists talk about their attachment to the French language and Canadian Francophonie, which is present from coast to coast.

Thanks to Hugo Sabourin (YUGZ) for use of his paintings in the video.

What does it mean to be Francophone in Canada?

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Transcript: “What does it mean to be Francophone in Canada?”

Video length: 2:01 minutes

Red, white and black ribbon background is displayed then fades into a shot of the Parliament Buildings in Ottawa, some athletes running on an outdoor track followed by a performer in front of an audience. Red, white and black ribbon background returns then fades to a group of people in an office setting and back. A Canadian flag emerges from the background with the text: “Live the Francophone Life in Canada. What Does it Mean to be Francophone in Canada?”

Narrator is shown sitting in a room decorated with art on the walls along with the text: “Province: New Brunswick. Country of origin: Congo. Jonathan Mpunge (Student).”

Narrator (speaking French): I’m proud to be a Francophone Canadian because I feel I belong to something extraordinary but, like, booming. Being French is one thing, but I think being a Francophone Canadian is even better.

A young man plays basketball on an outside court and scores.

Narrator is shown standing at the outside basketball court along with the text: “Territory: Northwest Territories. Country of origin: Rwanda. Rod Bryan Tuyishime Muvunyi (Student).”

Narrator (speaking French): The French language is really important to my parents. That’s why they sent us to a French language school in the Northwest Territories, which is, like, the only school in town. So my parents really didn’t want us to lose our language, which is really … which we really care about.

The narrator is sitting in a lounge with art on the walls and the text: “Province: Quebec. Country of origin: Canada. Patrice Bélanger (Artist).”

Narrator (speaking French): Living in French is a … it’s a way of life, it’s a culture, it’s an identity. Maybe it’s a little easier to live in French in Quebec since our province is mainly French-speaking. But knowing that people speak French across Canada, in Alberta, in British Columbia, in Saskatchewan or down east in the Maritime provinces, in our territories, Yukon, Nunavut and so on, knowing that these people continue to speak and protect the French language, and that French is still such a beautiful and rich language, even surrounded by a sea of English, which is another beautiful language. But we have to protect our French language, we have to live it, and I’m very, very proud to know that the richness of La Francophonie is everywhere here in Canada.

Narrator is shown in a building foyer, followed by the text: “Province: Quebec. Country of origin: Senegal. Boucar Diouf (Biologist/Artist).”

Narrator (speaking French):  For me, Canada’s French-speaking community is my family. I immigrated here but I come from Francophone Africa. When I arrived here and visited other provinces, I discovered that other people could join in when I sang Frère Jacques.

Scene changes to Boucar performing in front of a crowd in an auditorium then back to the original foyer.

Narrator (speaking French): It really touched me. It’s one big family, with different accents, different ways of speaking, a family that spices up the French language in different ways, from one end of the country to the other. That’s what it means to be Francophone in Canada.

The Citizenship and Immigration Canada corporate signature and the copyright message “Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, represented by Citizenship and Immigration Canada, 2014” are displayed followed by the Canada wordmark.

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