Given the events happening in the world at this time, it is the perfect opportunity to reflect upon the positive contributions we are making to the community.

In the last few months, Canadians have seen the desperation of people in the midst of war-torn countries, caught in the dishonesty of the government and most importantly, facing the deaths of loved ones. So during difficult times like these, when corruption runs deep and thousands of men, women and children are forced to leave their homes, it is important for citizens in Canada to put aside our judgments, as well as open our doors for those who need it.

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Although it is hard to admit, every person in society has the tendency to push away others that are not of the same race, religion, upbringing and even wealth. However, let’s face it; we are all human and diversity plays a large role in our lives.

Having experienced these tragedies from a safe environment, it is up to us to adapt quickly to change. Trust me, it won’t come without sacrifice, but learning to accept these immigrants will allow Canada to gain respect for people living all over the world in conditions that are not ideal.

In addition to this, let me remind you of how at least twenty percent of Canadian citizens were immigrants at some time and had to endure the hardships and challenges that come along with adapting to the customs of a foreign country. Let me also remind you of how in the past, Canadian citizens pushed away Chinese, Asian and Indian immigrants at their most vulnerable stages, all of which became successful and allowed the economy to flourish (by increasing job opportunities).

You see, often times we are hesitant because we are scared or fear the uncertainty that change brings. Despite this fear we hold, change is what allows us to grow as individuals and progress as a society. So my challenge for you is to reach out to someone that you wouldn’t think to, whether it is in the classroom, at work or in your community. Give a compliment, lend a hand, or even make small talk with a stranger; it is often the small gestures we make that brighten up the atmosphere around us. Whether it is being counted for or not, never underestimate a moment of your kindness as it has the power to change lives in ways you may never know.

– Jaia

 

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