Canada News

SLAA to vacate office as Edmonton City Council cuts multicultural funding

By  | 29 July 2019 at 04:24 | 1154 views

The Sierra Leone Association of Alberta (SLAA) is likely to lose its office space at Clareview Multicultural Centre (CMC) in Edmonton by Saturday 31 August 2019.

This is due to a cut in municipal funding to the Clareview Multicultural Society – the non-profit organization which is landlord (lessor) to SLAA.

The multicultural society’s board of directors is chaired by Munga Mudzinga; with Rebecca Lee (facing camera, in photo) as its secretary. Sierra Leonean Martha Sellu serves as the board’s treasurer while Patricia Andrews is executive director of the multicultural society’s flagship centre, CMC.

On Wednesday 24 July 2019, the board invited renters to a meeting at CMC. There, Rebecca Lee broke the news to SLAA and other tenant organizations.

Clareview Multicultural Society has largely been supported by City of Edmonton.

It means the multicultural society may have to give up its current suite of spaces within the larger complex, Clareview Community Recreation Centre.

In a ripple effect, SLAA would have to leave the building as well by August 31 this year.

The recreation centre comprises public facilities; including an auditorium, a high school, a daycare centre, an ice hockey rink, athletics/soccer fields, a gymnasium, a swimming pool, and a branch of the Edmonton Public Library (EPL).

“This place is great for our families to come and interact in a safe and healthy way,” says Abdullahi Mohama who was at Wednesday’s meeting, “It will be a big blow to the spirit of multiculturalism.”

As treasurer of the Canadian Somali Seniors Association (CSSA), Abdullahi Mohama represented his organization as one of the tenants at CMC.