Canada Latvian Centre in Toronto

The motto of the Canada Latvian Centre in Toronto (KLCT) is “Living environment for living nation!". 

The aim of the KLCT is to preserve Latvian culture and develop place, where Latvians can meet in Latvian environment during concerts, dances, schools, seminars, theatres and other events. The centre premises are offered also to different organisations’ events. 

The Canada Latvian Centre in Toronto has approximately 600 members, who each have donated at least $ 1000. The board manages the work of the KLCT. Every year the member general meeting take place that elects the Board. The Board chairmen since the foundation of the KLCT have been: Valdis Liepiņš 1979 - 1981, 1985 - 1986; Valdis Vagners 1981 - 1983, 1986 - 1989, 1995 – 1998; Harijs Jansons 1983 - 1985, 1989 - 1992; Ieva Martin 1992 - 1995; Auseklis Zaķis 1998 - 2003; Egils Fogels 2003 - 2006; Silvija Shedden 2006 - 2008; Arnis Markitants 2008 - 2010; Juris Tauriņš 2010 - 2013; Alberts Upeslācis 2013 – 2014, 2014 – 2015.

The work of the centre provide 4 employees and if necessary the additional employees are invited for particular works. The work of the KLCT provide approximately 200 volunteers, who work in the centre’s Board, Ladies’ Committee and other committees, work in the library, take care of the environment and supports the centre’s work in different ways.

Special role in providing of the KLCT work is for the Ladies’ Committee that organises and supports different events, as well as Martin’s Market and sell Latvian products on Saturday mornings. Since the first years of the work of the centre, the Sunday meals are being organised and a lot of people visit them.

The building of the centre and the land were purchased in 1977 and after the repair works that were made in order to prepare the premises for the centre needs, it was opened for the public in 1979. The development of the centre supported the local Latvians and Latvian organisations, as well as Ontario government. The centre has received support both, from the government of Canada and from Toronto municipality.

More than 750 events take place in the KLCT every year. Two Latvian schools are working in the premises of the centre - „Valodiņa” (Language) and Toronto Latvian Society’s Saturday School, as well as Gauja (14) Guides’ Team and Riga (72) Scout Team. In the premises of the centre work also dance groups „Daugaviņa”, „Mēnestiņš” (Moon), „Daugava” and „Dižais Dancis” (Grand Dance), choir „Dzirksts” (Spark) and Daugavas Hawk Men Choir. In the centre premises meet also Bridge Group, Latvian Craftsman Union in Canada, Toronto Latvian Philatelist Club and Toronto Latvian Seniors’ Union.

In the centre premises work also Latvian national Federation in Canada bureau, Latvian Credit Union, newspaper „Latvija Amerikā” (Latvia in America), Daugavas Hawks in Canada bureau and it is a home for other organisations also. In the centre work art and gift shop "Letts Shop" and bar „Umurkumurs”.

Also the library works in the centre. It was opened in 1981. Its aim is to gather editions about Latvia and Latvians and to make accessible for readers also those editions that are published outside Latvia. This is the biggest Latvian library in South America, maybe even in the world outside Latvia. In the library there are more than 15 000 books, 250 periodical editions, 250 videos, etc. Additionally, work also children library “Burvju atslēdziņa” (Magic Key) opened in 1997. In 2007 the library was called in the name of Apolonija Vetere.

In the premises of the centre are placed the works of Eduards Dzenis, Jānis Tīdemanis, Jānis Kuga, Visvaldis Reinholds, Margarita Kovaļevska and other painters. The Art Committee takes care of the development of artists’ work collection founded at the beginning of the 18th century.

In 1986 the Grants Foundation was established that supports the Latvian education of youth and studies of social knowledge.



Canada Latvian Centre in Toronto
4 Credit Union Drive, Toronto, ON  M4A 2N8, Canada

Phone: 416-759-4900
Fax: 416-759-9311

E-mail:  office@latviancentre.org

Home page:


Canada Latvian Centre in Toronto house

First Board of the KLCT in 1979. In the first row from left: Valdis Vagners, Valdis 

Liepiņš, Biruta Rubesa, Ansis Semenovs.  In the second row from left: Viktors 

Upeslācis, Alfreds Vanags, Richards Grigors, Alfons Kalns, Žanis Grundmanis, 

Kārlis Lapiņš, Alfreds Rāviņš.