The Canada Memorial in Green Park, London
LONDON — It’s not just any year of course. Or any Remembrance Day that is coming up. The First World War was just starting 100 years ago and many generations of Canadians would be forever affected by what happened in foreign fields.
In the UK and in Canada WW1 is coming into focus for many people like it never has before. Sacrifice, optimism and horror are all things that we read about now with a great deal of our own confusion and horror. And we try to learn from history.
Almost 30 years ago work started to create a permanent memorial in London to the hundreds of thousands of Canadians who travelled overseas to support British forces in the great wars. That can be seen in Green Park, beside Buckingham Palace and just behind the impressive Canada Gate.
At that time the Canada Memorial Foundation was also set up to create a ‘living’ memorial to the Canadian-British relationship, forged in those wars.
This year our 29th scholar is studying in Toronto, learning, working and sharing the connection between Canada and the UK. Turning the attention of that relationship from tanks to tablets… as the headline says. From tommy guns to tutorials.
We are about to go on a bit of a journey of our own at the CMF. We have tried to renew the internal working of this very simple, but important charity over the last few years. We’ve shored up our endowment and invested it wisely. We’ve reduced our administrative costs, and <a href=”https://www.canadamemorialfoundation.org/apply”>moved our selection process online</a>. We have also renewed both our Board and our Academic Committee, who help choose the scholars each year.
Starting next week, the first week of November, we will begin looking at how we can improve our approach to university students — drawing in more applicants for this amazing scholarship. We will improve our website and update the design of all of our communications. And we will start to build some proper fundraising programmes and materials. We would like to send more UK students to Canada… and… one day… bring Canadians to study here. (Please look at our giving page and see if it works. And let us know.)
This coming week we will also try to see if we can generate some media interest in Canada, the UK, the great wars… and maybe the Canada Memorial Foundation.
The work we are doing is changing lives and the chance to learn from each other is an exciting one.
Canada Memorial Foundation