OWTA is proud to present “Tracking Black Canada” as the topic of our 2020 Black History Month school tour. This year’s presentation will focus on the often forgotten histories of early black communities across our country. Using OWTA’s trademark edutainment style that combines video, music, Slam Poetry, Hip Hop, stand up comedy, and audience participation/ interaction, Tracking Black Canada will delve into the histories of some of Canada forgotten black communities. The presentation will highlight the contributions made by prominent residents in those communities, and how their impact is still felt today, and illuminate the conditions that led to their systemic demise.

The presentation will run between 45 to 60 minutes, allowing for enough flexibility to accommodate school periods of varying lengths. The presentation will flow from the East Coast of Canada all the way to the West, paying special attention to the role Canadian railway played in both the geographic and economic lives of blacks in Canada.

Potential Tracking Black Canada subjects include:

NOVA SCOTIA, Africville, Halifax
Africville was an African-Canadian village located just north of Halifax and founded in the mid-18th century. The City of Halifax demolished the once-prosperous seaside community in the 1960s in what many said was an act of racism.

ONTARIO, The Ward, Toronto
The Ward (formally St. John’s Ward) was a neighbourhood in central Toronto. In the 1850, many Black families settled in The Ward.

QUEBEC, Little Burgundy, Montreal
Little Burgundy is a neighbourhood in the city of Montreal, that served as home to a thriving black community for much of the twentieth century. It is often referred to as the “Harlem of the North.”

BRITISH COLUMBIA, Hogan’s Alley, Vancouver
Hogan’s Alley was the local, unofficial name for Park Lane, an alley that ran through the southwestern corner of Strathcona in Vancouver. It was the first and last neighbourhood in Vancouver with a substantial concentrated black population.

ALBERTA, Amber Valley, Edmonton
Amber Valley is an unincorporated community in Alberta. In 1909, a group of 160 African-American homesteaders established the community.


WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 29: Champlain College
THURSDAY, JANUARY 30: St. Anthony’s Elementary School
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 3: Beaconsfield High School & Christmas Park Elementary School
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 4: John Rennie High School
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 5: Lindsay Place High School & Beurling Academy
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 6: Macdonald High School & Lakeside Academy
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 7: Kuper Academy, Dawson College & Sacred Heart
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 10: West Island College & James Lyng
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 11: Pierrefonds Community High School & Howard S. Billings
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 12: Place Cartier & Collège Jean de la Mennais
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 13: Westmount High School & Dorval Elementary School
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 14: Woodroofe High School (Ottawa)
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 17: Villa Ste. Marceline & Pierrefonds Library
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 18: Villa Maria & Loyola High School

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 19: Britannia Secondary School
THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 20: Tamanawis Secondary
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 21: Gladstone Secondary School & Lord Byng Secondary School

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 24: FR Haythorne Junior High & Bev Facey Community High School
TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 25: MacEwan University
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 26: Ardrossan Junior Senior High School