Visit the offices of the Sarnia Lambton Chamber of Commerce and you’ll find a simple, yet effective sign—Bonjour Welcome—that includes the address to a website (bonjourwelcome.ca) outlining an initiative designed to build partnerships with local Ontario French-Canadian associations and other organizations, including 14 ambassadors from across the province who are already involved.

One of those is the Assemble de la francophonie de L’Ontario (AFO), the organization representing Ontario’s 1.5 million French speakers.

As part of a funding initiative by the Government of Canada, eight new Francophone associations have come on board to promote the campaign. One of those is the Centre communautaire francophone in Sarnia-Lambton, a recent chamber member.

‘This is a positive campaign intended to encourage Ontari0’s Francophones, visitors as well as bilingual individuals to be asked to be served in French when purchasing goods and services,” said Peter Hominuk, the AFO’s executive director. “I invite business people to proudly show that they can serve their clients in both French and English. They will quickly realize that bilingualism is good for business (and) serving clients in their language is quality customer service.”

The organization has also developed a directory of bilingual businesses and organizations. An English version can be found HERE.

The Sarnia Lambton Chamber of Commerce offers bilingual services.