Every year increasing numbers of Canadian visitors come to find out more about the tragic events taking place in Flanders in the First World War. The Battle of Passchendaele (1917) and the Second Battle of Ypres (1915) are of utmost importance to the Canadian national identity, but those searching for Canadian-related sites have no point to start from.
In France there is already a long tradition of Commonwealth nations promoting their countries and histories through anchor points. The best-known Canadian examples are the WWI interpretive centers of Vimy and of Beaumont Hamel. They act as major entry points to the French battlefields, but in Flanders - which has some of the major Canadian battlefields - there is no equivalent.
Because of the strong affiliation between the MMP1917 and Canada, the Museum would like to act as such an entry point, by achieving it on different levels. The purpose is to create a Canadian guide for the exploration of Flanders Fields; educational materials; a memorial garden in the Passchendaele Memorial Park; a Canadian Exhibition in Flanders and various events and ceremonies.
With the support of the Government of Canada and Veteran Affairs, the Memorial Museum Passchendaele 1917 will now be able to provide visitors a uniquely insight of Canadian history. Over the next three years , Veterans Affairs Canada has approved funding up to a maximum of $160.000 under a Partnership Fund.
The Honourable Julian Fantino, Minister of Veterans Affairs Canada, will announce this at the Museum on 5th of August 2014. "The soldiers who fought in the Ypres area of Belgium were among the more than 650,000 Canadians who served in uniform during the First World War. Our Government is proud to partner with the Memorial Museum Passchendaele 1917 to ensure that our military’s brave stories of service, sacrifice, and heroism are told.”