Ottawa Chinese Community Services Centre (OCCSC) enlisted author Denise Chong to create the website to discover, share and preserve stories about history of Chinese immigrants to Ottawa, and to safeguard a place in the historical record for Ottawa-area pioneers.
The website Lives of the Family was launched in 2011 as an educational initiative entitled “Chinese Historical Research Project” to document the history of Chinese immigrants in Ottawa and the contribution they have made. The site is an homage to family, to Chinese-Canadians who struggled in times of strife to adapt to a society far removed from their own. As Canada itself was transformed by war and a growing economy, Chinese immigrants seized opportunities to use their individual talents to transform their own lives. The telling of such stories is a Canadian tale, the stories of family.
In the development of the website Denise Chong was tasked to focused on the history of the pioneering Chinese in Ottawa, which includes archival photographs and video clips of interviews she conducted.
So inspired by the website, Denise explores the arc of the immigrant experience in twelve linked stories in a new book of the same title, Lives of Family. Published by Random House Canada, the book was released in October 2013 and is available in book stores and at the Ottawa office of the OCCSC.
Ottawa Chinese Community Services Centre is a non-profit, non-partisan, community-based organization that has served the community since 1975. The organization is committed to advancing the social and economic integration and participation of newcomers, immigrants and refugees.