Dear colleagues and friends,

Canada’s population comes from all regions of the world. To encourage you to explore our country’s rich diversity, each month we highlight one important date, event, festival, or celebration. This month, we are pleased to highlight Canadian Islamic History Month.

Canadian Islamic History Month recognizes the significant role that Muslim communities play in Canadian society and highlights their extraordinary contributions. Canadians have an opportunity this month to learn more about the history of Islam in Canada and recognize the many achievements of Muslim Canadians in the arts, sports, academics, sciences, literature, and their communities.

Four years after Canada's founding in 1867, the 1871 Canadian Census recorded 13 European Muslims among the population. The first Muslim organization in Canada was registered by immigrants from Lebanon living in Regina, Saskatchewan in 1934. The first Canadian mosque was constructed in Edmonton in 1938, when there were approximately 700 European Muslims in the country. The building is now part of the museum at Fort Edmonton Park.

The years after World War II saw a small increase in the Muslim population. However, Muslims were still a distinct minority. It was only after the removal of European immigration preferences in the late 1960s and early 1970s that Muslims began to arrive in significant numbers. Statistics Canada reported that in 2019, 3.7% Canadians were Muslim.

Canadian Islamic History Month is also a time to acknowledge the ongoing challenges and barriers that Muslim Canadians face. Muslim communities across Canada have endured the horrific results of racism and hate directed against Muslim Canadians, including the fatal attacks on innocent Muslims in Quebec City and Hamilton.

Together, we must combat all forms of discrimination, Islamophobia and hate-fueled violence directed at Muslim communities across the country. This month is a time to continue working toward a compassionate, inclusive and safer Canada for everyone.

Happy Canadian Islamic History Month!

If you would like that we highlight a cultural event to create awareness about the rich cultural diversity of Canada, please do not hesitate to write to me. That way, we all learn about each other, to promote mutual understanding, respect and collaboration.

Stay safe, stay well!


Waheed Khan

President, National Consultation Team