Preserving our immigration history.


CIHS partners with various bodies interested in furthering the knowledge and history of Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Programs.


We have been a staunch supporter of Pier 21, Canada’s National Immigration Museum since its inception.


Carleton University

The Society collaborates with Ottawa’s Carleton University Ugandan Archive about the 1972 expulsion from Uganda of its Asian population. This is a unique archive that gives insight into the expulsion and subsequent resettlement of over 4,000 Asians in Canada.

We have also become active partners in an oral history project with the Department of Social Work and the MacOdrum Library.  The project will create an archive of the stories of southeast Asian refugees who arrived in Canada in the wake of the fall of Vietnam in the late seventies and early eighties. In the first phase we will collect 110  ninety minute oral histories from  former Vietnamese, Laotian and Cambodian refugees living in Ontario and Quebec as well as former sponsors, officials and  people involved in organizations like Operation Lifeline and Project 4000. Funding permitting we will collect 100 more in the west and the Maritimes. The Hearts of Freedom project now has it’s own website:


Federal Departments and Agencies

The Society has historical ties to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada and the Canada Border Services Agency. Many of our members worked (or still work) for those departments. Our goals of preserving and publishing the history of immigration and refugee movements to Canada are of direct interest to its employees – past and present.

Hearts of Freedom

Canadians who came here under the ‘boat people’ movement are now telling their stories. CIHS is partnering with the Southeast Asian Canadian community organizations, Carleton University and others to capture the stories – many of which are now on-line, through the ‘Hearts of Freedom’ project. The project will ensure that the settlement experience of these people is preserved and becomes part of Canada’s historical narrative. CBC Radio in Ottawa interviewed one of the individuals who told his story to the project team.