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Croatian Canadians

Croatian Canadians are Canadian citizens who are of Croatian descent. The community exists in major cities including the Greater Toronto Area, Hamilton, Ottawa, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Windsor, and Montreal.

Croatian Canadians
Hrvati u Kanadi or Hrvatski Kanađani
Total population
133,965 (2016)[1]
Regions with significant populations
Toronto, Vancouver, Windsor, Montreal, Calgary, Edmonton, Hamilton, Winnipeg, Ottawa
Canadian English, Canadian French, Croatian
Majority Christian
Related ethnic groups
Croatian Americans, European Canadians, Yugoslav Canadians

Popular events celebrated in the Croatian-Canadian community include the Canadian-Croatian Folklore Festival (held in eastern and western Canada) and the Croatian-North American Soccer Tournament.


There were approximately 114,880 Canadians of Croatian ethnic origin as reported in the 2011 Census compiled by Statistics Canada,[2] rising to 133,965 by the 2016 Census.[1] Although predominantly found in Ontario, Croatian Canadians are present in most major Canadian cities throughout the country. The ten largest Croatian communities are found in the following cities:[3]

The town with the largest percentage of people of Croatian ethnic origin is Kenaston, Saskatchewan - 17.5% of its 285 inhabitants claim Croatian ethnic origin. Statistics Canada also designates Census Metropolitan Areas in the collection of its data. The ten Census Metropolitan Areas with the highest concentration of Croatian Canadians are:[4]

Religious affiliationEdit

Most Croatian Canadians are Roman Catholic who follow the Latin Rite of their ancestors in Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. A very small minority of Croatians are Byzantine Rite Roman Catholics. There is also a community of Croats who follow Islam, the descendants of those who converted after the 16th century, after the conquest of much of Croatia by the Ottomans. Communities of Protestants have historically been negligible in Croatia.

In Canada, the first ethnic Croatian parish was established in Windsor in 1950. Soon, parishes were established in Toronto (1951), Hamilton (1958), Vancouver (1967). Today there are ethnic Croatian parishes and missions in seventeen cities in Canada. In addition, previously unorganized Croats of the Muslim faith, with the arrival of eminent physician Asaf Duraković[5] founded the Croatian Islamic Centre[6] on June 23, 1973 in Etobicoke (75 Birmingham Street, Etobicoke, ON M8V 2C3),[7] helped by the Croatian Catholic community.[5][8] An old Catholic school was bought for 75,000 CAD and readjusted into masjid. There was also a community of Bosnian Muslims of Yugoslav option, but the Croat option of Bosnian Muslims never cooperated with them, since Muslim Croats considered all Yugoslavs and Communists as chetniks and as their worst enemies. Since the old building was in catastrophic condition, a new mosque was built on the site of the old one in 1983.[5] Today, given changing political affiliations and political pressures from 1990's, and influx of non-Croat option of Bosnian Muslims,the center is now known as the Bosnian Islamic Centre. Despite that, today 4 out of 64 Canadian mosques have the attribute "Croatian".[7] In Croatian Islamic Centre the children are taught the Croatian and Arabic languages, but there also Croatian Islamic newspapers, books, brochures, etc.[8][9][10] Croatian Islamic Center called on Muslim governments, organisations, and individuals to press the Yugoslav regime, to end the persecution of Islam and to grant genuin equality of Muslims in Yugoslavia. The director of Centre Kerim Reis wanted that Belgrade releases the Muslim prisoners of conscience and to end to restrictions on the building of mosques.[11] During Yugoslavia, this group often spoke accused Tito's Yugoslavia for practising discrimination both Muslim and Catholic Croats.[12] While an overwhelming percentage of Croatians in Canada remain Roman Catholic, there are significant non-Catholic populations, including Protestants (most of whom have been in Canada for more than one generation) and Eastern Orthodox (the majority of whom are of mixed ethnic background).

Notable Croatian CanadiansEdit



  • Eve Adams - Liberal MP, Missisauga-Brampton South; born Eve Horvat to Hungarian-Croats parents
  • Bob Bratina - former Mayor of Hamilton, 2010–2014; Liberal MP, Hamilton East-Stoney Creek 2015–Present
  • Jan Brown - former Reform/Independent MP Calgary Southeast, 1993-1997
  • Allan Kerpan - Saskatchewan Party MLA, Carrot River Valley, 2003–present; former Reform MP, Moose Jaw-Lake Centre, 1993-2000
  • Janko Peric - former Liberal MP, Cambridge, 1993-2004
  • Peter Sekulic former Alta Liberal MLA, Edmonton Manning, 1993-1997
  • Roseanne Skoke - former Liberal MP, Central Nova, 1993-1997
  • John Sola - former Liberal MPP, 1987–1995
  • Dave Stupich - former NDP MP, Nanaimo-Cowichan 1988-1993; former B.C. NDP MLA, 1963-1969; 1972-1988
  • Ruža Tomašić - police officer and politician, Member of the European Parliament
  • Lynne Yelich - Canadian Alliance/Conservative MP, Blackstrap, 2000–2015


  • Asaf Durakovic - physician and expert in nuclear medicine and depleted uranium; poet

Arts and entertainmentEdit


Political activistsEdit


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b "Immigration and Ethnocultural Diversity Highlight Tables".
  2. ^ Statistics Canada. "2011 National Household Survey: Data tables". Retrieved 14 February 2014.
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^ a b c Fikret Artuković: Toronto slavi 35 godina hrvatske džamije (picture)
  6. ^ Salatomatic - Croatian Islamic Centre
  7. ^ a b "Toronto: 'Hrvatska' džamija slavi 35 godina postojanja!" [Toronto: 'Croatian' mosque celbrates 35th anniversary!] (in Croatian). BH June 24, 2008. Archived from the original on April 22, 2012.
  8. ^ a b Vinko Grubisic: Croatians in Toronto, From: Polyphony Vol.6, 1984 pp. 88-91 Archived 2011-07-06 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ Google Books Massacre of Croatians in Bosnia-Hercegovina and Sandžak, Croatian Islamic Centre (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), 1978
  10. ^ Mushtak Parker: Muslims in Yugoslavia: The quest for justice, Croatian Islamic Center, 1986, ASIN: B0006EVF9U
  11. ^ Google Books The Light, Vol. 20-21, Bilal Muslim Mission of Tanzania, 1986
  12. ^ Google Books Paul R. Magocsi,Multicultural History Society of Ontario: Encyclopedia of Canada's peoples

External linksEdit