Learning common language helps create connections

Via: Richmond News

A common language is the bond that binds us all together as Canadians. It opens up so many doors and possibilities in addition to broadening one’s horizons.

There is an old saying that it is never too late to learn. These students are proving it to be true. Learning at least one of Canada’s official languages — French or English —should be every immigrant’s top priority.

As a matter of fact, learning as many languages as possible is a great asset. Rather than confining ourselves to our ethnic enclaves, we need to reach out and integrate. This is what Canada is all about. We should be proud of our heritage and mother tongue. However, at the same time, we must be equally proud of being Canadian. Read full article here

The Beauty is in the Diversity

Via: The Province

Balwant Sanghera’s main message in the wake of the shooting is that Canada is a great, welcoming country of immigrants that is not defined by the actions of one crazy person. Mr. Sanghera says he thinks of Canada’s multicultural society as a beautiful garden filled with many different flowers and colours. “The beauty is in the diversity,” he says. So what is the answer to those who refuse to see that beauty? We need to do more of what Mr.Sanghera has been doing for more than 50 years since arriving in Canada from India — reaching out to other cultural communities in friendship. Read full article here

Gurdwara Nanak Niwas A Hub Of Activity During Summer Months

Via The Link

India Cultural Centre of Canada’s Gurdwara Nanak Niwas is a hub of activity for weddings and other activities especially during the summer months. In addition to that, every Monday is also a very busy day. First, it is the yoga class led by veteran yoga teacher Nashattar Singh Mattharu. That is followed by Chai Chaupal, a program jointly sponsored by the Richmond Multicultural Community Services and the Gurdwara. However, this past Monday, July4 had a lot more. In addition to the yoga class there was also the clinic for cholesterol and blood pressure. There was a long line up of people waiting to have their blood pressure and cholesterol checked. From there they moved on to an exciting information session about Richmond Hospital.

Members of the Chai Chaupal group had expressed an interest in learning more about the hospital services and the proposed acute care tower. Consequently, Jon Hicke, Director of Marketing and Communications for Richmond Hospital Foundation was invited to share information about these subjects with members of the congregation who are also active participants in these programs. Jon Hicke explained in detail the need for more modern updated facilities and equipment. He stated that the current hospital is 50 years old. During the past 50 years the population of Richmond has quadrupled from 50,000 to more than 200,000. Also, with the aging population there is need for more acute care facilities and equipment. Read full article here

Richmond resident Balwant Sanghera is a member of the India Cultural Centre of Canada’s Gurdwara Nanak Niwas Management Committee.

Working towards cultural harmony in Richmond

Via: Langara Voice

RMCS organizes events, such as their upcoming celebration for Diwali and Eid on Nov. 26, to help bring together people of all ages and cultures to promote cultural harmony.

RMCS also offers a weekly English conversation class where immigrants can learn basic English phrases to get by on a regular basis. Ratton said that it is not an ESL course, but that it teaches the important aspects of the language to foster continuing language development.

Isolation and loneliness are huge obstacles for any new immigrant

“Isolation is one big factor that immigrants face,” said Ratton. “If they come here as refugees or skilled workers they don’t have family or any real support system. Leaving the house becomes a big fear for them.”- Read the full article here


Artist fosters civic engagement

Via Richmond News:

First, let me tell you about the event itself. Twenty new Canadians were paired with 20 officials from the city. Long tables were set up in one of the meeting rooms at City Hall, decorated with unique tablecloths, place settings, and dishes cooked by the new Canadians, who put a lot of time and effort into their preparations.

This was done to make the city officials feel like they had been invited to their partner’s home for lunch and to set the table (pun wildly intended) for the pairs to open up and share experiences on a person-toperson (not citizen to official) basis.

There were paper runners on the table as well, where the facilitator had painted conversation starters to get things going. But as it turned out, no one needed any ice breakers and the pairs were excited to get to know each other. Some surprising connections were discovered.

– See more at: http://www.richmond-news.com/community/artist-fosters-civic-engagement-1.495375#sthash.vQetojxV.dpuf 

Award-winning theatre group loses funding

Via the Richmond News

“It’s a challenge as I don’t think settlement ends after three years. Settlement can be a long process based on their challenges. Making a community work and be inclusive is about helping people with longer term struggles,” said Grewal.

The program will now operate on a limited, voluntary basis.

Grewal also said one of the things that worked best for the program was the fact new immigrants could mingle with both longer-term immigrants and multi-generational Canadians and talk about their unique experiences.

“The program seemed to have a lot of impact and built leaders among peers in schools. That’s why we believe it’s a program that should continue,” she said.

The youth troupe consists of high school students in the city who take on leadership roles after receiving training from adult RMCS staff, such as Richmond in 3D’s director Mark Pawson, a professional actor and expert in non-violent communication skills.” – Read full article by clicking here