Listen, Hear Our Voices


  • In Budget 2017, Library and Archives Canada (LAC) received $14.9M over three years for two initiatives, “Listen, Hear Our Voices” (LHOV) and “We Are Here: Sharing Stories.”
  • LHOV aims to help digitize and preserve First Nations, Inuit and Métis Nation culture and language recordings. LHOV provides:
    • Funding to digitize existing Indigenous culture and language recordings and build the skills, knowledge and resources needed to digitize and preserve Indigenous culture and language recordings. The first funding call closed on July 17, 2019, and LAC received 87 applications for an overall ask of $6.5M. An external Indigenous review committee will review applications in September 2019 to make recommendations for funding and for the Librarian and Archivist of Canada’s approval. An announcement will follow in November. LAC will announce a second funding call in the fall.
    • Free services for Indigenous organizations and individuals to have their recordings digitized at the Gatineau Preservation Centre by LAC’s audiovisual conservators. If participants do not have the technical capacity to store or manage the new digital preservation files, LAC is offering deposit storage on our servers. LAC has not yet accepted any digital preservation files, but is in discussions with the Yukon Native Language Centre and Northern Native Broadcasting Yukon.
  • Seven archivists, based in traditional territories, are available to assist in the delivery of these services to participating Indigenous communities. The LHOV team is also developing a research guide of existing Indigenous language recordings.


  • To date, LHOV has received positive feedback from Indigenous communities and other stakeholders. LAC will need to continue to balance expectations and engage respectfully with Indigenous communities as implementation continues.
  • LHOV received significantly more applications for funding than anticipated and will not be able to fund all applicants.

Key public messages

  • LAC’s Indigenous initiatives are part of LAC’s response to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) Call to Action no. 69 and its commitment to playing a significant role in reconciliation and the recognition of Indigenous rights.
  • LHOV is not an acquisition project. There is no transfer of ownership, copyright, or intellectual property with this service. All rights remain with each recording’s owner.


Kathryn Lagrandeur, Director, Social Life and Culture Private Archives
Caitlin Horrall, Corporate Secretary, National Heritage Digitization Strategy, Office of the Deputy Librarian and Archivist of Canada
Tel: 613-220-9146

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