Ethnocultural Communities and Organizations in Brandon and Steinbach

Funded through Manitoba Labour and Immigration

In January 2008, the Rural Development Institute (RDI) at Brandon University embarked on a new research project that explores ethnocultural communities and organizations in rural Manitoba. With support from Manitoba Labour and Immigration, the purpose of this project is to develop an understanding of ethnocultural groups in rural Manitoba, what they need to be vibrant and successful, and the challenges they face as a community. The ethnic diversity of rural communities is changing as rural immigration continues to be an important strategy in addressing demographic challenges and labour shortages throughout the province of Manitoba. The development and establishment of ethnocultural communities and organizations is a vital aspect of immigrant settlement and retention.

This project is multi-phased and adopts a case study and comparative approach. The first phase explored ethnocultural organizations and related non-government organizations in Brandon. It was observed that in rural areas many ethnocultural groups have not formed official organizations, but rather organize and meet as an informal community. These groups face a number of challenges including volunteer burn-out, limited financial and human resources, and an aging membership. The final report for phase one can be located in the publications box above.

Now in the second phase, research is focusing on Steinbach, which is one of the top destinations for immigrants coming to Manitoba. Following data collection in Steinbach, the results from Brandon and Steinbach will be compared to develop a comprehensive analysis of what is needed for ethnocultural organizations and communities to become or remain vibrant and active elements of Manitoba’s increasingly diverse rural communities.

Research Goals and Objectives

  • To inform and increase understandings of ethnocultural organizations and communities in rural centres, including what factors contribute to the successful development of ethnocultural organizations as well as what barriers hinder the establishment of such organizations.
  • The purpose is to delve into grassroots information to provide a clear understanding of what ethnocultural groups need to establish successful and engaged communities and organizations.

Key Research Questions

  1. Are ethnocultural organizations and communities forming in rural Manitoba?
  2. What conditions are necessary for the successful development of ethnocultural organizations?
  3. What can the provincial government do to help foster such organizations?
  4. What supports are needed for ethnocultural organizations and communities to develop and become viable/successful?
  5. Wow do community / regional dynamics impact the development of ethnocultural organizations and communities?

Project Publications

Enhancing and linking ethnocultural organizations and communities in rural Manitoba: A focus on Brandon and Steinbach. Final Project Report.
Sormova, M. & Bucklaschuk, J.

Mapping ethnocultural communities and organizations in Brandon and the Westman Region.
Bucklaschuk, J. & Sormova, M.

Ethnocultural communities and organizations in Steinbach, Manitoba. Final Report.
Bucklaschuk, J.