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The ripple effect of our collective decision to address this discomfort has been felt worldwide. Since that time, we have helped restart the lives of more than 30,000 newcomers. Our unique integration methods are hailed as an international model.
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I was two months short of being 12. I went to bed quite late, only to be startled shortly afterwards by my mother. She was attempting to wake my father. She was yelling, "The war has started!" Years later I can still clearly recall the fright with which I got up. The haunting sound of the sirens still rings in my ears.
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Last month, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) estimates that in just three weeks, it processed 37,491 refugees from South Sudan who were fleeing to neighbouring Uganda -- 8,200 arrived in a single day.
Being a refugee isn't fun, you see. It is not an adventure. It isn't an extended vacation at the expense of another. It is a sacrifice. It is a last resort. They may be safe here, but they wish that their own country wasn't at war. They would rather be there than here. Frankly, it sucks that my new neighbours are Syrian refugees.
Muhammad Hamed / Reuters
About ten days from time of writing, I think my three-year-old daughter is going to be a little annoyed with me. This is because at that time we'll be well into our second day of a 135km walk from our house in Toronto to Niagara Falls. I have no idea how much of this my daughter will remember or what, at this age, she will take away from the experience. But when she's older and looks back at this time, I hope these are four lessons she has learned.
Every child deserves a quality education, but refugee children, especially girls, are the most likely to be left behind. Over half of all refugees are children. Only 50 per cent of these children are able to attend primary school; 25 per cent make it to high school; and just one per cent of these students move on to colleges and universities.
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Many of the world's most powerful landlords are meeting for the Refugee and Migration Summit. Heads of state from all over the world, including our own Prime Minister Trudeau, will discuss the fate of more than 21.3 million refugees -- more than any time since the Second World War.
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He compared the current discrimination against Muslims to what Italians and Greeks faced in the 1950s.
The recent revelations that Conservative Party leadership candidate Kellie Leitch has been consulting conservatives around the country about whether we need to screen newcomers to our country for "anti-Canadian values" prior to permitting them entry is both disappointing and, unfortunately, not surprising.
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"I chase behind employers to return my calls and emails."
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Canada is a young country and we lack the long history and cultural heritage like European countries. We do not share the American Dream nor America's melting-pot culture. Thus, we provide better ground for multiculturalism to flourish; we let refugees and immigrants from around the world preserve their culture and heritage.
Welcoming refugees into our communities implies a responsibility to provide a safe environment for rehabilitation and integration. Yet this weekend thousands of our neighbours will be exposed to trauma in a spectacle many of us would do away with in the first place. The air show is nothing like a charity bike ride. In a city with a large population of refugee newcomers and people who have experienced the trauma of war it is insulting, invasive, and violent.
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The recommendation to exempt Syrians and Iraqis from requiring official UN refugee status to be sponsored was rejected by then-immigration minister Chris Alexander.
Kai Pfaffenbach / Reuters
It has been one year since South Sudan signed a peace deal to end 20-months of conflict in the world's newest country. But with renewed violent clashes in July and mass internal displacement, long-term peace and stability remains uncertain. These South Sudanese children share what peace means to them.
Madeline Baker/Plan International Canada
We do, indeed, have what it takes to end the world's refugee crisis. But, as any athlete would tell us, the real work takes years. It happens behind the scenes. It happens when we reveal the blind spots. And, most importantly, it happens when we listen to the voices that can be the hardest to hear.
The enormity of the humanitarian crises facing the world are sometimes difficult to comprehend, let alone productively address. But humanitarian workers are working hard in Tanzania and in other countries around the world to support people living in the most difficult situations imaginable.
The UN Secretary-General said he was grateful for the "generous and compassionate'' commitment of the Canadian government to resettle tens of thousands of Syrian refugees.
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I came to the camp not knowing what to expect and so worried about what I would see and feel. Instead, I left with feelings of hope, pride and sadness, and many lessons and gifts of the heart that I will forever cherish.
It's quite clear that the federal government wants to increase the numbers of immigrants that the country accepts. Traditionally those arguing against taking in more immigrants insist that doing so will have a negative impact on the economy.
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It will take time to come up with solutions, said one Liberal MP.
Late on Tuesday afternoon, minister Goodale -- or likely his staff -- issued a press release that appears as a blog on the Huffington Post Canada. In it, the minister says he has heard the concerns and is working swiftly to remedy the problem -- but he just needs more time. Yet, under his watch as minister of public safety, three people have died in immigration detention in the last five months. This is a tragedy and a political crisis. These three, Francisco Romero Astorga, Melkioro Gahungu and an unidentified man, all ran out of time. And so has the minister.
There are an estimated 549 Syrian refugees in Turkey who have been approved to come to Canada.
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Yazidis were never highlighted by the Conservatives as a group that should be prioritized for resettlement.
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Amer Saka was arrested on Wednesday.
As Canadians have been doing for more than three decades, refugees from Syria and many other countries turn to our nation's food banks, because government supports for the most vulnerable don't even provide enough money to cover the most basic necessities.
"The response has been extremely overwhelming."
Some mothers feel grateful that they're still alive and at least have their children with them. One mother, who has been raising her children in this tented settlement for the past four years, said she wished they had stayed behind in Syria. She said it would be better to have died than to be living as they are.
Amnesty International Canada
Today is World Refugee Day, a date to remember the plight of refugees everywhere. It's an occasion we've marked five times since the conflict in Syria began. We wanted to find a way to give Canadians a new perspective on the situation.
Today, we mark World Refugee Day, amidst the most challenging and troubling time for global refugee protection since World War II. It is time to turn the global focus away from the cruel and illegal means now used to keep refugees away; and instead embrace our shared international responsibility to ensure they are safe.
"I'm here. I don't know anybody. I don't know where to go. But I'm coming to seek safety."
A new how-to manual for aid workers lays out the issues and practical steps that all must take to ensure women's sexual and reproductive health and rights, including menstrual health that is a precursor to preventing and mitigating gender based violence. Included in these guidelines is a specific requirement to ensure dignified access to hygiene-related materials.