Contact Us

History of the Edmonton Japanese Community Association

1947 – 1957

Group picture taken in 1948 at the Bissell Centre

JCCA (Japanese Canadian Citizens Association) branch in Edmonton was present, and was loosely connected to national head organization based in Toronto.

Issei families began forming a group around a shared need for a Food-Co-op to assure a supply of Japanese food. Issei & Nisei community met periodically to socialize and discuss issues.

1957 – 1986

Group Picture from early Centre

The community was driven by Nisei families who wanted to preserve Japanese Canadian cultural integrity through marriage and cultural practice.

Forces of cultural pride, assimilation and integration emerged.

A formalized community organization was needed to address and facilitate the above changes and needs.

The Edmonton Japanese Community Club Society (EJCCS) was established as a registered non-profit organization with Alberta Consumer and Corporate affairs on July 9, 1976.

Meetings occurred in homes and facilities were rented for Christmas parties and picnics.

Japanese Canadian Centennial (1977) activities increased the awareness of our history and increased participation in community events occurred.

The official name of the organization was changed from EJCCS to Edmonton Japanese Community Association (EJCA) in 1984.

1985 – 1994

Redress Settlement (September 22, 1988).

The Edmonton Japanese Community Association moves to rented facilities at 8760 – 50 Street (1650 square feet) in January 1989.

Interest in a community building of our own was driven by a new self-confidence and availability of Redress Settlement funding.

A broad community needs assessment study is initiated in 1989.

Community Club programs began to grow in rented commercial facilities.

1994 – the present

New Centre built in 1995

Research, planning, design and development of a Community/Cultural Centre occurred over a five year period from 1989 – 1994, culminating in the opening of the present Centre on Saturday September 24, 1994.

The Japanese Canadian community is partnered with the Argyll Community League to operate the Centre.

Programs evolved to sustain cultural traditions and community needs.


How the Culture Centre built, presentation at the AGM held on October 6, 2019: Report

Video with photos of EJCA history, October 6, 2019: EJCA 25th Anniversary


History Project Phase 1 was held from January 2010 to March 2012. To view the report, please go to the "Project" tab on the top line.