Letter From The President & 2014 Newsletter

February 12, 2015 at 4:42 pm
Dear Members and Friends of ICAP: Happy New Year from the ICAP Board of Directors and best wishes in 2015 for much joy, happiness and success to each of you. As president of ICAP, it is my pleasure to send to you the highlights of the Italian-Canadian Archives Project (ICAP) for 2014. Much was accomplished and we have a great deal to celebrate but there is still a great deal to be done. I am confident that by continuing to pool our talents, and energies, we will build on our success and meet the responsibility of preserving and making accessible the stories and documents of the Italian-Canadian presence across Canada. I must thank the Founding Members, the current board of directors, members and in particular the executive committee for their ongoing support and active participation in ICAP. Thank you to our collaborators, partners and advisors who have all contributed to this success and we look forward to working together in the years ahead. Warmest regards, Caroline Di Cocco ICAP’S FOURTH NATIONAL CONFERENCE The official ICAP launch coinciding with the Fourth National Conference and AGM hosted by the Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau was a major event for our young organization. 80 participants attended from across Canada to hear about and discuss ways for “Reaching Across” distance, time communities and organizations to preserve the Italian-Canadian story. The presentations and discussions included the introduction of ICAP’s new website, created by Nicholas Buccheri. Dr. Dean Oliver, Director of Research and Dr. Mauro Peressini, Curator, both from the Canadian Musuem of History, encouraged the work of ICAP and looked to ICAP as a possible model for the museum's outreach to community groups. ICAP BOARD MEMBERS FOR 2014/2016 ICAP is a working board and is blessed with having a team of amazing and talented individual members. The new board members for 2014-2016 are: Stanislao Carbone (Winnipeg, MB) Maria Cioni (Toronto, ON) Angela Clarke (Vancouver, BC) Gabriella Colussi Arthur (Toronto, ON) Ariella Dal Farra Hostetter (Ottawa, ON) Giulia De Gasperi (Summerside, PEI) Caroline Di Cocco (Sarnia, ON) Konrad Eisenbichler (Toronto, ON) Nancy Marrelli (Montreal, PQ) Sam Migliore (Surrey, BC) Sandra Parmegiani (Guelph, ON) Mauro Peressini (Montreal, PQ) Bruno Ramirez (Montreal, PQ) Gabriele Scardellato (Toronto, ON) Olga Zorzi Pugliese (Toronto, ON) JOIN NOW: We encourage all those interested in the ICAP mission, to become a member, to disseminate information about ICAP, contribute to its mission and support this important endeavour. Encourage your friends and colleagues to join! Moreover, you can join and follow ICAP’s initiatives on our website athttps://icap.ca/ICAP. RECENT ICAP NETWORK OUT-REACH A number of groups across the country have become engaged in preserving the Italian-Canadian story. ICAP experts have: Assisted Famèe Furlane Toronto in forming a committee to focus on organizing the preservation of their history. Engaged the interest and subsequent support of the York University Archive in archiving 110 boxes of Dr. Angelo Principe Italian-Canadian Newspaper collection. Supported and facilitated a group in London, Ontario to discuss and formulate a strategy to document their Italian-Canadian history. Furthered Sarnia, Ontario’s project to identify collections in their area. Organized and facilitated discussions with the Order of Italo-Canadians (Ottawa) concerning the preservation of the organization's working papers. Encouraged Vancouver community groups to preserve their story. ROYAL SOCIETY OF CANADA ACKNOWLEDGES ICAP Canada’s most prestigious academic body, The Royal Society of Canada, as acknowledged the role of ICAP in preserving the Italian-Canadian Story. The report titled: "The Future Now: Canada’s Libraries, Archives, and Public Memory" presented by the Society's Expert Panel on Libraries and Archives notes: "Models can be envisioned where mainstream archives and communities assume distributed custody of the communities’ memory texts. For example, the Archif Menywod Cymru/Women’s Archive of Wales rescues material evidence of women’s lives and experience in Wales and places these materials in existing repositories (archives, museums, libraries) where they will be documented and preserved to professional standards, and made accessible to the public. Operating along the same lines is the Italian-Canadian Archives Project (ICAP), a network of researchers and organizations that reach out to communities across Canada and connect them with experts in Italian-Canadian history and public archives. ICAP encourages families, communities and organizations to share with local archives or museums relevant historical items, including documents, letters, and photos that capture the experiences of Italians in Canada. [emphasis added] In small as well as large settings, the dedication of archivists to disciplinary standards and to creating online national resources expresses the essence of professional commitment. ..." Congratulations and a heartfelt thanks to everyone for the hard and dedicated work! FUNDING ICAP’s WORK We have funded the ICAP initiative thanks to the generosity of the Mariano A. Elia Chair for Italian-Canadian studies, York University, the Italo-Canadian Cultural Club, the Centre for Italian Studies, Thunder Bay and the generosity of individual board members. The costs for conference venues in Thunder Bay, Toronto, Montreal and Gatineau were donated by each hosting institution in those cities. Many individuals who have done work and travelled for ICAP have done so as volunteers and donated their time and expenses. We are especially grateful for this generosity. Now however, a fundraising strategy initiated by Ariella Hostetter is being acted upon. The ICAP budget for 2015 is $21,000. This is base point cost for insurance, legal and accounting, web-site development, AGM/Conference/workshop and office expenses. We have been approaching possible donors to request donations. PERFORMIGRATIONS, AN EU PROJECT WITH ICAP SUPPORT “THE TERRITORY IS THE PEOPLE”: This is the foundation of the Performigrations project and a principle incorporated in ICAP actions. Dr. Angela Clarke, Curator of the Italian Institute of Culture in Vancouver and ICAP board member, is developing and hosting a Performigrations event in Vancouver in August 2015. The ICAP national network of members will promote the event in their various communities and via the ICAP website to encourage Italian-Canadian communities across Canada to bridge with other cultures to discuss the Performigrations’ themes installation: old/new citizens and immigrants commenting on their experiences to contribute to making the “territory” (mobility) and responding to change and migration as an evolution of identity across Canada and Europe. The Chinese community and First Nations representatives will join with the Italian-Canadian community in Vancouver for this intercultural event to crystallize these themes in their locales and throughout Canada via the ICAP network. ICAP will also provide support funding for the event through fundraising initiatives in various parts of Canada. ICAP supports the intercultural event planned by Dr. Clarke to complement the Performigrations art installation in which citizens and immigrants will discuss cultural and civic memory, sometimes harsh, as factors contributing to the knowledge that we in Canada benefit from our diversity and that this diversity is our Canadian history. ICAP members will join the opening of the Performigrations event and then hold its fifth Annual Conference in Vancouver on 28 - 29 August. IMPORTANT UPCOMING EVENTS CSIS AND ICAP IN SORRENTO, ITALY 21-24 JUNE 2015 As we have done in the last 4 years, ICAP will have a presence at the Canadian Society of Italian Studies (CSIS) annual meeting, this year being held in Sorrento, Italy. For the Sorrento 2015 session, ICAP is organizing a four-person panel presentation. SAVE THE DATE: THE 2015 ICAP AGM/5th NATIONAL CONFERENCE/WORKSHOP WILL BE HELD IN VANCOUVER, 28 - 29 AUGUST 2015.
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How Sarnia’s Italian-Canadian Community Has Preserved its Story

December 6, 2014 at 12:57 pm
I am the daughter of an Italian immigrant from southern Lazio (Ciociaria) who was raised in a small Ontario city called Sarnia.   As in so many towns and cities across Canada we had a church (now closed) that provided mass in Italian from 1956-2008 and was a centre where the newly arrived Italians congregated.   In addition an Italian-Canadian Club was formed in 1957. In our home my parents told us many stories about their journey to Canada, why they immigrated, their struggles to rebuild their home and how life was in the “old country.”  As children we would also listen to stories when people came to visit or we visited newly arrived paesani. Nearly everyone who was part of this Italian community came from rural roots and very humble origins and from “Ciociaria”. In my early thirties I tried to find documentation about this Italian-Canadian presence in Sarnia, but to my surprise there was none to found. It looked as if it would be up to us, members of the community to research and write our own story.   The problem was figuring out how do we go about this, and whether other cities across Ontario had done this type of work.  Remember this was in the late 1980’s before computers were common tools for communication. The first thing we did was to bring together interested members of the community and leaders within the community. Included in this group was the Italian- Parish priest, some high-school teachers of Italian origin, high school students and others who had an interest. We gathered, formed a committee and met on various occasions to discuss a strategy of engagement.  The students researched microfilms at the library from newspaper articles etc.   We found that there were experts in Toronto and after a few tries we connected with an expert who was willing to assist us.  He gave us a protocol and methodology to follow. Others on the committee were given tasks such as, organize interviews and collect documents, which were dropped off at the church, organize the material and a team who compiled the story.  We raised some funds locally to help with this project.  This group organized workshops for high school students, created a pictorial exhibit of the materials and then wrote the publication “One by one…Passo dopo passo”  History of Italian Community in Sarnia-Lambton 1870-1990. Here we are 25 years later working on adding to this story in Sarnia.  It is important that we individually and collectively take responsibility to preserve this history because it is our legacy as Italian-Canadians and our history as Canadians. But more needs to be done on a National scale and that is why ICAP exists. - Caroline Di Cocco The book is available through carolinedicocco@gmail.com, in the National Library of Canada and in the local book store, the Book Keeper, in Sarnia.
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Developing the London, Ontario Model to Preserve the Story of Italian Canadians in London.

December 6, 2014 at 12:46 pm
In Summer 2014, Professor Antonio Calcagno convened an initial meeting with various people of the Italian-Canadian community in London to gather information about the work and history of the Italian-Canadian presence in London, Ontario. Much information came forward and people were very willing to help out in various ways. As a result, another meeting was scheduled for the Fall, with key members of the community, to continue discussing next steps. In preparation for this meeting, Antonio Calcagno and Caroline di Cocco of ICAP met at the end of the summer to share what had been done in other communities and to discuss the next steps for London, Ontario. The second community meeting was held with representatives of the Marconi Club at King's College on 8 October 2014. At this meeting the facilitating work of ICAP was explained. All present agreed there was urgency to collecting and preserving recordss of the Italian-Canadian community in London. It was also acknowledged that this responsibility rested with the community members themselves. At this meeting it was agreed that a larger community committee should be formed to bring together leaders in five key areas: academia, religion, arts and culture, business, and social/community. These people were identified and will be contacted to attend a general meeting where the work of ICAP will be discussed and the actual work of identifying, collecting, cataloguing and storing of relevant materials can be organized. Additionally, the third general meeting will discuss further the delegation of tasks such as a) writing/recording; b) promotion; c) archival work of identifying, storing and collating, etc. An expert from ICAP will be invited to hold a workshop on this topic. This local committee will appoint a chair to coordinate the project in London. Community discussions with key individuals and organizations and creating a committee are the initial steps to moving this project forward in London. ICAP is pleased to have played a role in facilitating this discussion with the Italian-Canadian community in the city. Caroline Di Cocco and Antonio CalcagnoIn Summer 2014, Professor Antonio Calcagno convened an initial meeting with various people of the Italian-Canadian community in London to gather information about the work and history of the Italian-Canadian presence in London Ontario. Much information came forward and people were very willing to help out in various ways. As a result, another meeting was scheduled for Fall with key members of the community to continue discussing next steps. In preparation for this meeting, Antonio Calcagno and Caroline di Cocco of ICAP met at the end of the summer to share what had been done in other communities and to discuss the next steps for London, Ontario. The second community meeting was held with representatives of the Marconi Club at King's College on October 8, 2014. At this meeting the facilitating work of ICAP was explained. All present agreed there was urgency to collecting and preserving relevant materials of the Italian- Canadian community in London. It was also acknowledged that this responsibility rested with the community members themselves. At this meeting it was agreed that a larger community committee should be formed to bring together leaders in five key areas: academia, religion, arts and culture, business, and social/community. These people were identified and will be contacted to attend a general meeting where the work of ICAP will be discussed and the actual work of identifying, collecting, cataloguing and storing of relevant materials can be organized. Additionally, the third general meeting will further discussion the delegation of tasks such as a) writing/recording; b) promotion; c) archival work of identifying, storing and collating, etc. An expert from ICAP will be invited to hold a workshop on this topic. This local committee will appoint a chair to coordinate the project in London. Community discussions with key individuals and organizations and creating a committee are the initial steps to moving forward this project in London, Ontario. ICAP is pleased to have played a role in facilitating this discussion with the Italian-Canadian Community in London. Caroline Di Cocco and Antonio Calcagno
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Welcome To The New ICAP Website

March 17, 2014 at 7:51 pm
We're excited to announce ICAP's revamped website, including online processes that help get our message out there to Italian-Canadian communities across Canada and growing online resources. Take a few minutes and explore, learn a little about what we do and see where you or your organization fit in! We'd love to hear from you so feel free to contact us with any questions or comments. What began as a group of scholars and community leaders concerned with identifying and collecting Italian-Canadian historical material has  become an active non-profit committed to outreach and national networking. Through our Archive Workshops and Share an Item initiatives, we're trying to create more ways to engage people with the fundamentals of archiving and make it easier for anyone to identify and work towards preserving items of interest. As an organization of established Italian-Canadian scholars, researchers and community leaders, we have experienced how archival materials inform our personal and community stories, as well as the story of Canada. Our Ongoing Research Map demonstrates how important archives and related material are to the wealth of research that is going on today focused on or related to the Italian-Canadian experience.   Archive Workshops Our expert members are working towards creating and sharing introductory "how-to" material that will help any organization or institution get start taking the steps towards identifying, collecting and preserving historical material. As of right now, we offer Archive Workshops in two ways: ICAP Workshops - Workshops lead by an ICAP expert for large community organizations with private archives and a strong interest in properly cataloging and preservation methods. Workshops lead by ICAP are currently restricted to a few areas in Canada based on available resources. More information is available here or by contacting us. Workshop Kits - An introduction to archiving kit created by ICAP experts. It is designed to allow community organizations — cultural clubs, schools, libraries, community centres or related organizations -  to lead their own informal workshops and bring ICAP's message to their community. Workshop Kits are available upon request for organizations that satisfy ICAP's requirements.   Sharing Items of Interest We also encourage individuals and community organizations to bring forth historical items for ICAP to identify. Information regarding items of interest will be relayed to experts and archives within ICAP's network of members and supporting organizations. In this way, communities have a more direct and simplified connection with archives, and vice versa, optimizing the number of important objects we can collect and preserve. We encourage Italian-Canadians everywhere to look in their homes, reach out to friends and families and connect with ICAP to identify items that tell stories of the Italian experience in Canada. Again, feel free to send us any comments or questions and we'll happily help you with anything we can!
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