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Lunar New Year 2015 celebrated by families with children adopted from China

02/22/2015 05:56 EST | Updated 04/24/2015 05:59 EDT
Parents with children adopted from China are taking advantage of this weekend's Lunar New Year festivities to help their kids connect with their cultural heritage.

Lunar New Year is often the biggest cultural event of the year for families of Asian heritage and there have been events and festivals all week long in Metro Vancouver.

Sharon Hughes and her husband adopted two children from China. As a member of the B.C. chapter of Families With Children from China, she has organized activities for other families like hers.

She believes it's important for her kids to learn about their heritage.

"We have always felt that it's our responsibility," said Hughes. "We took these children home. We took them out of China."

Hughes is driven in part by her own experiences; she was born in England and was brought up learning about her cultural background.

"I respect my heritage and I'm really proud of it, and so it made complete sense to me that I would do that with my kids," she said.

She feels that whether or not her kids choose to embrace that heritage will be up to them when they grow up. She also understands that second-generation Chinese-Canadians celebrate their heritage in different ways.

"There's new traditions and kids who don't want to be as traditional," said Hughes. "What I most want for them is to be able to have a sense of who they are as Chinese Canadians."

One of the ways she teaches her kids about their heritage is by celebrating Chinese events throughout the year.

"There's so much going on and there's so much love for the Chinese heritage in Vancouver that it's great for our kids to see that and it's great for us to partake in a huge variety of things," she said.

Families with Children from China events for the weekend include a Chinese New Year lunch and attending the Chinese New Year Parade in Vancouver.

To listen to the full interview, click on the audio labelled: Families with children adopted from China celebrating Lunar New Year

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