Luncheon hosted by the Lieutenant-Governor of Saskatchewan

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Luncheon hosted by the Lieutenant-Governor of Saskatchewan

Regina, Monday, August 23, 2010

I would like to thank you very warmly, your Honours, for hosting this lunch on the occasion of my visit to Regina. Thank you for the thoughtful donation towards a cause that is so close to my heart.

It is a real privilege, and I am delighted to be with you here today. And Premier Wall, I am happy to be able to visit you in your home province and I am looking forward to our meeting.

I have never forgotten the first time I came to Regina, and Saskatchewan, as Governor General of Canada in 2006.

One of the greatest pleasures of the office I hold is having the opportunity to go and meet people in every province and territory across our vast country.

I remember the passionate discussions I had with Saskatchewanians from every walk of life.

Veterans and war brides, members of the Treaty 4 First Nation and Métis, schoolchildren of the Qu’Appelle Valley, citizens dedicated to the revitalization of North Central Regina, students at the RCMP Depot Division, who are celebrating a most significant anniversary this year, and the talented youth of NightWind Theatre and Street Culture Project.

I have also had the opportunity to hear from members of the Franco-Saskatchewanian community, who have told me about the challenges they face and the efforts they are making to promote and preserve the French language and culture in this province, where their roots run deep.

These discussions have stayed with me throughout my mandate and I have shared what we talked about everywhere I have travelled in Canada and abroad. I have also lauded the spirit of solidarity and openness that characterizes Saskatchewan.

Later today, in Saskatoon, I am looking forward to continuing an on-going discussion I began five years ago with young people across the country and around the world.

Your Honour, like you, I believe that what young people have to say, and the dreams they so dearly want to make a reality, are vital resources for the Canada of today and symbols of hope for the Canada of the future.

I would like to congratulate you on establishing your annual leadership forum for Saskatchewan high school students.

Tomorrow, I will also take part in a discussion on women’s rights at the University of Saskatchewan, as this year marks the 50th anniversary of the adoption of the Canadian Bill of Rights, and I will travel to La Ronge to meet with the women, men and young people behind the success of that Aboriginal community, which serves as a development model.

But I would especially like to make the most of every opportunity to thank the people of Saskatchewan for the support and friendship they have shown me over the past five years.

I will cherish the time I have spent in Saskatchewan, and I hope to come back to visit you and your wonderful, unique province in the years to come.

Thank you very much!