The Legacy Campaign
We all have an immigration story.
Unless you’re from an Indigenous family, every Canadian came to our great country from somewhere else. Many of us grew up hearing these stories from our parents, grandparents or great-grandparents. It’s become not only part of our individual heritage but is also part of Calgary’s collective inheritance.
It’s the 30th anniversary of the Centre for Newcomers. We want to create a living snapshot of Calgary’s cultural legacy for generations to come.
Our goal is to collect 1,000 stories from everyday Calgarians, such as yourself. We are going to collect your stories on our website and store them permanently at Calgary’s new Central Library.
Record your family's immigration story, upload it to your favourite social media platform using #myimmigrantstory and share your gift with the community.
These tips are just suggestions. If you already have a clear vision of what you want to do, you are more than welcome to record your video how you want to. Just be sure to:
- keep it around 2 minutes
- end with the phrase “My name is ___ and I’m from an immigrant family”
- upload it with the hashtag #myimmigrantstory so we can find your story
People have short attention spans on the internet. Keeping your story to 2 minutes will increase the chances it will be viewed.
- Questions to ask yourself in advance to help get you started include:
- Where is your mom’s family from? Where is your dad’s family from?
- Have you ever been there? What was that experience like?
- What traditions have been passed down in your family?
- Who has been the most important family member in your life or been the biggest influence on your life?
- What lessons did that person teach you?
- What was the happiest moment of their life? The saddest?
- What is your earliest memory of them?
- What is your favourite memory of them?
- Do you remember any songs that they used to sing? Can you sing them now?
- What did they do for a living? How did they into this line of work?
- What did they want to be when they grew up?
- Are there any funny stories your family tells about this person that come to mind?
- What part of your family’s legacy are you proudest of?
- How has YOUR life been different than what this person could have imagined?
Write out the points you want to communicate. It doesn't have to be in full sentences. Point form is just fine.
Use an object:
One way to frame your family’s immigrant story is to centre your story around an object that has meaning to your family. It could be a photo of your parents when they arrived in Canada, a tea set your grandparents brought with them or even a piano your great-grandparents saved up to purchase.
Make sure you are in a quiet space. Indoors is usually best. Try to use a room without too many hard surfaces that make the sound of your voice bounce around. You can test this by clapping your hands together and listening for the sound to “bounce”.
Using your computer or mobile device, make sure both you and the object are in frame. Tell us who in your family this object belonged to. Tell us how they got this object. Tell us how they came to Canada. Tell us what they taught you.
Smile. Not only does it make you look more engaging to the viewer, we can actually hear the smile in your voice.
Use Our Tag Line:
End with the phrase “My name is ___ and I’m from an immigrant family.” It's a simple way to provide continuity to all the videos.
Remember that this is an all-ages archive. While we do not seek to limit expression of ideas, lewd, obscene, pornographic, racist, belligerent, or sexually explicit language will not be included. Communications that may be unlawful or harmful or that aim to insult anyone or are hateful, harassing or abusive will not be included.
You can post your video to your favourite social media, whether that’s Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. As long as you include #myimmigrantstory we will find it, collect it and include it in our archive.
You can share with all your friends, but you might also want to send the link to relatives who may not be as tech-savvy. Encourage them to record their own story.