Wong’s mul­ti­cul­tur­al­ism ef­fort noted

China Daily (Canada) - - FRONT PAGE - By NA LI in Toronto re­nali@chi­nadai­lyusa.com

The 2015 Sier­hey Kh­mara Ziniak Award was pre­sented to Dr Joseph Wong, who has been in­volved in pi­o­neer­ing work in, and be­yond, the Chi­nese com­mu­nity in Canada, at the 37th An­nual Cana­dian Eth­nic Me­dia As­so­ci­a­tion (CEMA) Awards Gala held on Nov 20 in Toronto.

The award, named for CEMA’s founder, is pre­sented an­nu­ally to an out­stand­ing in­di­vid­ual who, through his or her work, has en­cour­aged and sup­ported mul­ti­cul­tur­al­ism in Canada.

Wong be­gan his com­mu­nity work in 1979, when he was so moved by the plight of the Viet­namese Boat Peo­ple that he set up an or­ga­ni­za­tion to help Indo-Chi­nese refugees get set­tled in Toronto.

That same year he led a Chi­ne­seCana­dian protest against a CTV pro­gram that por­trayed Cana­dian stu­dents of Chi­nese de­scent as for­eign­ers who were tak­ing univer­sity spa­ces away from Cana­di­ans.

“Over the years, we have worked with many in the me­dia to chal­lenge politi­cians, to get ev­ery­body to come to­gether to help each other, to pro­mote the mul­ti­cul­tur­al­ism of Canada,” said Wong.

The United Way of Greater Toronto, where he has served as chair­man of the board, is just one of the nu­mer­ous causes he has de­voted his time to. Since 1982 Wong has been a key player in the mul­ti­cul­tural trans­for­ma­tion of the United Way to bet­ter re­flect Cana­dian so­ci­ety.

“Dr Wong has a deep re­spect for the eth­nic me­dia, has ral­lied the me­dia to sup­port and pro­mote his causes,” said Made­line Ziniak, chair­woman of CEMA.

“He is seen as a shin­ing ex­am­ple of a life­time of ded­i­ca­tion to the very prin­ci­ples CEMA rep­re­sents.”

Among the many dig­ni­taries at­tend­ing CEMA’s Awards Gala were a num­ber of di­plo­mats and fed­eral, provin­cial and lo­cal politi­cians. Awards were given in the cat­e­gories of ra­dio, print, tele­vi­sion, In­ter­net and in­no­va­tion.

Dr Joseph Wong

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