Chinese-English newspaper relaunches as fully multicultural publication

A Chinese-English newspaper, Ni Hao PEI, is relaunching as a more broad-based multicultural publication for the Island.

5,000 copies of free Ni Hao PEI being printed and distributed across the Island

Hamish Redpath and Rocky Chen (right to left) have teamed up to relaunch the newspaper for multicultural communities across P.E.I. (Krystalle Ramlakhan/CBC)

A Chinese-English newspaper, Ni Hao PEI, is relaunching as a more broad-based multicultural publication for the Island. 

Five thousand copies of the new Ni Hao PEI have been printed and are being distributed across the Island to coffee shops, waiting rooms, and anywhere else there are free newspapers. It is still in Mandarin and English, but publishers are working to have future editions include other languages along with the English translation. 

"It's needed now. We're at a time in P.E.I. that requires a multicultural voice and a celebration of our multicultural community because I think P.E.I. is going to benefit from that. We need the population growth and there's so much to learn from all of our cultures," said Ni Hao PEI owner and co-publisher Hamish Redpath. 

Hamish Redpath (right) hopes to get more contributors to write in more different languages. (Krystalle Ramlakhan)

Redpath said he's seen how beneficial multiculturalism can be growing up between Montreal and P.E.I. 

Shelved in 2012

Redpath started handing out copies this past Friday. It is a mix of local news, business profiles and lifestyle.

Ni Hao PEI first launched in 2011 as a way to reach out to the Chinese community and as a marketing tool for Redpath's real-estate work. But he said it quickly grew beyond its original mandate. Redpath said he reluctantly shelved the project in 2012.  

Ni Hao PEI originally launched in 2011, but was only published for about a year. Now it's being relaunched. (Krystalle Ramlakhan/CBC)

"It was an incredible amount of work for a full-time realtor and my small team … It was difficult to maintain consistent quality translation," said Redpath. 

New, dedicated team

Redpath believes now is a good time to relaunch because more newcomers are staying on P.E.I. and because the Chinese and other diverse communities have grown in the past couple of years. He also said he has a new, dedicated team. 

Part of the new team is co-publisher and translator Rocky Chen who moved to P.E.I. in 2010. Chen has translated all of the articles and said the paper can help different communities understand each other.

The revamped paper has been distributed across the Island to places like coffee shops and waiting rooms. (Krystalle Ramlakhan/CBC)

"It really helps people to understand the Island, what's happening in business and even in property, and also the many opportunities here," said Chen. 

Chen said the paper will also help the Chinese community keep connected with their culture and language.

Redpath said initial feedback is positive.  

"I have missed it a great deal. The papers disappeared from the bank, waiting areas and coffee shops. Since I shelved the paper, I have consistently received emails asking to place advertising or submit stories," said Redpath. 

Understanding among communities

Redpath is funding the newspaper himself and through advertising. He has written most of the stories himself. He hopes to get more people to write articles in the future in other languages too. 

Rocky Chen has translated all of the articles in the paper from English to Mandarin. (Krystalle Ramlakhan/CBC)

The vice-president of the Chinese Canadian Association of Prince Edward Island said the paper is a great idea, especially for newcomers. 

"That [could be] the one source which they are finding local information in Chinese and English," Nathan Ding said.

The paper plans to publish four times a year and the next issue is expected in April. The paper will eventually be published online as well.

About the Author

Krystalle Ramlakhan

Krystalle Ramlakhan is a multi-platform journalist with CBC Ottawa. She has also worked for CBC in P.E.I., Winnipeg and Iqaluit.