It’s been three years since our move to Canada from Bangkok. A lot has happened since then. We survived two of the worst winters ever witnessed in the last 40 years. We saw Sobeys launch Chalo!Freshco, an impressive grocery store in Brampton that makes me miss India a wee bit lesser. We witnessed the rise of Justin Trudeau, the handsome Prime Minister who makes Canada look better than ever.
Cultural diversity in Canada
There are 3 main political parties in Canada: the Conservatives, Liberal Party and New Democratic Party. Justin Trudeau leads the Liberal Party. He has charmed the world with his wit, vision and yoga moves.
Trudeau’s dad Pierre Trudeau, who was PM way back in the 70’s, first opened the door to non-white immigrants, introducing cultural diversity in Canada that is now one of the country’s greatest strengths.
Pierre Trudeau’s policy is fuelled forward by Justin Trudeau. He warmly welcomes everyone to Canada – from Syrian refugees to Brexit mourners to DonaldTrump denouncers. Google searches for the phrase “Move to Canada” peaked when the Republican front-runner won seven state primaries. It’s easy to see why.
Canada is internationally favoured as a stable place to live in based on a few key factors:
- A socially progressive government
- Universal health care
- Multicultural environment
- First world comforts
But it also sparks off a new debate for Canadian new immigrants like us. Will the huge influx of globally miserable humans make settling in tougher?
So far we’ve been lucky. In just 3 years since our arrival, we managed to own a home, a car and have decent dinners without free food tickets.
The journey has not been without challenges. But on the whole, we have a lot to be grateful for. Now with 27,000 Syrian refugees looking for jobs on Canadian soil with planeloads more on way, can we continue to hope for the best?
Can Canada manage us all?
One thing goes for this coutnry. No stone is left unturned to help Canadian new immigrants nest.
Federal funds and private sponsors pitch in to help. Friends and relatives are quick to open up their homes when immigrants can’t rent. Communities step in at the slightest crisis.
JustinTrudeau’s policy of embracing all is rife with controversy. But kindness seldom goes unrewarded.
The South Asian Sikh community in Canada who Pierre Trudeau had embraced back in the 70s now return the favour by helping Syrian refugees settle in.
In turn, Syrian refugees who moved to Canada merely months back selflessly raise funds to support Fort McMurray wildfire victims that swallowed up an entire town in Alberta on May 9, 2016. When language became a barrier, they resorted to Google Translate but the services did not cease.
“We know what it’s like to lose everything” said Anas Khaddam to cbc.ca. So they pitched in to help in any way they could.
Closer to home, on June 29th 2016, a huge home-gas explosion rocked our pristine neighbourhood in Mississauga . Residents rushed to the Burnhamthorpe Community Centre to help displaced families. Interestingly over 47% in the multicultural suburb speak a mother tongue other than English or French.
After 3 years since our move to Canada, we still feel a bit unsettled. But no matter how tough our journey, how cold the winters, not one of us can deny the warmth we found here.
Settled in Canada and feel it’s time to give back? Click HERE to help Syrian refugees or Alberta wildfire victims.
Follow my blog “Oh Canada!” for more on my Canadian journey. Twitter: @joeyday20