CCFA Niagara – Cuba

This site is constructed to provide insight into Cuba and the Cuban people. It is further designed to inform you of the Canadian-Cuba Friendship Association and our Niagara Chapter, CCFA Niagara.

It is now 59 years since the Castro led revolution was victorious in defeating the Batista dictatorship, implementing revolutionary changes and setting Cuba on its socialist path.

Since then Cuba has had many accomplishments. It has gone way beyond what any other developing country has achieved in a similar period of time. Cuba is recognized by the UN to be a world leader in health care delivery, in education, in racial harmony and eliminating poverty. It has made huge advances in science and bio-technology, pharmaceuticals and environmentalism. Cuba is widely recognized for the humanitarian work it provides to the world.

The Cuban economy continues developing despite the U.S. embargo. Imagine Canada with a U.S. embargo against this country. Every year the UN General Assembly calls upon the U.S to end its destructive illegal embargo against Cuba but the U.S. continues its failed policy of attempting to destroy the Cuban economy.  CCFA Niagara joins the world in speaking out against this injustice.

Close to a million Canadians visited Cuba last year and they generally agree the Cuban people are friendly and gracious hosts. Cubans appreciate Canadians because Canada gave recognition and support to Cuba, while the U.S. took a path of hostility against Cuba and its revolution. Every year Cuba hosts the largest Terry Fox run outside of Canada.

Cuba is very safe. Day or night you can safely travel throughout the country. Cuba is not a police state as often characterized by detractors.

While racism continues, it exists on the margins. There is no comparison with the racism that existed under the Batista regime or exists in the U.S. today.

Cuba has not achieved their goal of creating an egalitarian society as a middle class exists alongside the poor. Still, Cuba today is far more equal than most any other country.

Cuba is a country unlike any other in its international solidarity and internal social harmony. For over 54 years Cuba has been sending healthcare workers to help countries around the world experiencing natural disasters. “After God comes Cuban Doctors!” is the refrain of Haitians thankful for the earthquake assistance from Cuba.

Nelson Mandela declared “The Cuban people hold a special place in the heart of the African people. Their contribution to African independence, freedom and justice, goes unparalleled for its principled and selfless character”.

may-day-paradeThere are no parallels to the annual Havana International Workers’ May Day parade. As the accompanying pictures show hundreds of thousands of Cubans, come out to walk together in support of their government and their revolution.

cuba-will-winThe Castro’s are loved by most all Cubans, but Fidel and Raul Castro along with all the original revolutionary leadership will soon be gone.
Fidel has died and Raul is stepping down as the Cuban President and elections are underway to choose a new President. There will be change and the future is uncertain but thankfully, there is a determination amongst the people that the revolutionary goals and ideals shall remain. We hope you will explore this web site further and learn more of this exceptional country, both its successes and failures.

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Our Mission Statement

The CCFA Niagara undertakes to initiate and promote activity and continuous growth of friendship between the Canadian and Cuban Peoples. Our activities are directed toward the development of mutual exchanges in the areas of information, culture, health and education. We work in cooperation with other groups and individuals in Canada having similar aims and interests.

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FIDEL CASTRO
Our Hero, Our Teacher, Our Inspiration
1926 – 2016
Your Struggle Will Live On


 

Miguel Diaz-Canel
President of Cuba

After five months of elections at three levels of governing, Cuba for the first time since the revolution has a president that does not bear the Castro name – a generational change.
For those of us who love Cuba, and all it stands for, pleasingly Miguel firmly stated that he will maintain the Revolutionary Course for Socialist Cuba.
That was reassuring.

Pete Seeger sings Guantanamera

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Listen to Pete Seeger sing the Cuban anthem Guantanamera. The lyrics were based on one of the last poems written by Cuba’s national hero, José Marti, before he died in battle, May, 1895. 

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Biggest Terry Fox Run
Outside Canada

Two million Cubans are expected to take part in the largest annual Terry Fox Run outside Canada on Saturday. It is an improbable success in a country of only 11.3 million people.

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Two million Cubans expected for largest Terry Fox Run outside Canada

This year is the 17th edition of Cuba’s Marathon of Hope. To date, close to half a million dollars has been raised for local cancer research.
Cuba’s tradition is for a starting call to be made simultaneously at 10 a.m. throughout the country by the radio station “Radio Reloj.” Cubans then pour out of their homes and shops onto the streets to join in the run.
The Run is a symbolic show of unity between the two countries, which celebrate 70 years of diplomatic relations this year. That is especially significant given that Canada and Mexico were the only countries in the Western Hemisphere to maintain ties with Cuba following the Castro-led revolution in 1959.
The run is notable for its participatory nature, where all Cubans, regardless of age, sex or health condition can walk, run, or use roller skates, bicycles or wheelchairs, to take part alongside Cuban athletes.
The tremendous homage Cubans pay to a young Canadian demonstrates the friendship between the two countries.

For more on Terry Fox from a moving Havana Times article visit Items of Interest… OR Click Here