The Ottawa chapter was established in 1975. At that time, Janka Survilla was the Chairman of the chapter, while Elena Skurat was a Treasury Secretary.
Through 1975-1997, the chapter represented Belarusian interests across Canada’s multicultural organizations.
In 1989 Ivonka Survilla, Zina Gimpelevich and Pavlina Smith-Pashkevich co-founded the Canadian Chernobyl Fund. The aim of the fund was to provide the rehabilitation for the Belarusian children who suffered in the aftermath of Chornobyl nuclear disaster of April 26, 1986. The children were able to travel to Canada, where they temprarily lived with Canadian familied who hosted them.
At the turn of the 21st century, new wave of immigration opened a new stage in the life of Belarusian diaspora in Ottawa.
Through 2001 – 2005, Pyotr Murzenak served as the chairman of Belarussian Canadian Alliance.
Through 2017 – 2020, members of Ottawa chapter Siarhei Mazhava and P. Murzenak served on the Board of Directors of the Belarusian Canadian Alliance, while Natalia Barkar and Alyaksandr Karalkevich wewre members of the Audit Committee.
– www.binim.org, the website for the Belarusian Institute of Science and Art in Canada
– www.sakavik.net, educational site, administered by P. Murzenak (since 2012).
Magazine “Culture. Nation” is published on Sakavik.net. To date, the publication boasts 25 issues, about 150 articles written by 44 authors. Approximately 60% of the magazine’s audience is from Belarus.
In 2004-2009, Belarusian Saturday School was opened in Ottawa, with 15 students in attendance. The school’s curriculum was approved by the city of Ottawa (teachers included Danata Henrikhovna and Pyotr Murzenak).
The musical duet “Cantabile” was founded by Vlada Chametka (violin) and Mikhail Rykov (guitar).
Members of the Ottawa chapter have published 14 books in two decades, 12 of them in Belarusian and 2 – in English.
Members of the Ottawa chapter organized and hosted the Summit of Belarusians in North America (September 3-5, 2016, Hotel Lord Elgin).
On March 11, 2018 the chapter organized the event celebrating the 100 anniversary of Belarusian National Republic in the Parliament of Canada (Parliament Hill) in Ottawa. The event was higly regarded by Belarusian diasporas world-wide. Over 180 guests attended the celebration in the Parliament. The main hall was decorated in white and red colors – the colors of the national Belarusian flag. The exhibition of Belarusian books took place after the official ceremony.
Belarusians in Ottawa regularly organize political and cultural events and concerts, spend vacations together and organize demonstrations in support of democracy in Belarus.
Members of the chapter maintain close relations with other diasporas in Ottawa, including Hungarian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Polish, Ukrainian, Czech, Estonian.