Al Hijra

Move From Wan Country To Dea Other


बसाई सराई


What stays with the old life? What comes with the new life?

Deciding on what to bring depends on why you are leaving, how long you have to plan, and/or whom you are saying goodbye to. Sometimes escaping with life alone, with an inner flame of hope, is enough to keep one going. Getting to Canada is not an easy process. There are a number of steps to follow, papers to file and people involved. Each story of arrival has its own wave of experiences and emotions.

Qu’est-ce qui reste avec l’ancienne vie? Qu’est-ce qui s’en vient avec la nouvelle vie?

Déterminer quoi apporter dépend des raisons à la source du départ, du délai de planification et des personnes que nous laissons derrière nous.

Parfois, s’enfuir en ne pensant qu’à la vie, avec une lueur d’espoir en dedans de soi, voilà une source de motivation suffisante pour continuer à foncer. Aller au Canada, ce n’est pas chose facile. Il y a plusieurs étapes à traverser. Il faut envoyer des documents et faire affaire avec bien des gens. Tous les arrivants vivent leur propre gamme d’expériences et d’émotions.

ما الذي يبقى مع الحياة القديمة؟ ماذا يأتي مع الحياة الجديدة؟

يعتمد اتخاذ القرار بشأن ما يجب إحضاره معك على سبب مغادرتك، والمدة التي يتعين عليك التخطيط لها،
و/أو من تودعه. أحيانًا يكون الهروب من الحياة بمفردك، مع شعلة الأمل الداخلية، كافيًا للاستمرار. الوصول إلى كندا ليس بالأمر السهل. هناك عدد من الخطوات التي يجب اتباعها، والأوراق التي يجب تقديمها، والأشخاص المعنيين. كل قصة وصول لها موجة خاصة بها من التجارب والعواطف.

Ma yubka ma al haya gedima wa ma yabti ma haya al jedida?

Yutamit takadit maiyujib ikidar ala sabab mugadaratak. La min ataukik alek atatit awu min mantakulukun fi bada al ayan lel horuf al haya be mufuradak ma sula al amala dakalia taltaki alistimar al merik al wosul ila Canada le isa amelia saba.

Watin dae with dea old life? Watin cam with dea new life?

For mak up you mind watin for bring depend on wai you dae comot wusai you dae, ow long you get for plan en ready, en wudat you dae say goodbye to. Some tem wae you dae runaway for you life with dea hope say tin go fin for you, good for mak you glady dea say tin go fine for you. For cam nar Canada norto easy tin ooh. Boku tin dae for do, for do dea paper wok en dea pipul dem wae you get for wok with. All man get e yone experience en how den dea feel.

چی ماوەتەوە لە ژیانی کۆن؟ چی هاتووە لەگەل ژیانی نوێ؟

بڕیار دان لەسەر ئەوەی چی بهێنیت پەیوەندی دارە بە هۆکاری کۆچ کردنت، وە کاتی بەرنامە دانانت و ئەو کەسانەی بەجیی دەهێلی، هەندێک جار تەنها لەگەل ژیان را دەکەیت.
لەگەڵ پشکۆیەک هیوا لەوانەیە بەس بێت بۆی بەرەو پێش برۆیت.
گەیشتن بە کەنەدا کەرێکی ئاسان نییە گەلێک خال دەبێت پەیرەو کەیت و گەلێک وەرەقە ئامەدە کەیت ، هەر چیرۆکێکی گەیشتن ناوازەیە و تایبەتە.

पुरानो जीवनसंग के रहन्छ? नयाँ जीवनसंग के आउँछ?

के ल्याउने भन्ने निर्णय के मा निर्भर गर्दछ भने तपाई किन देश छोड्दै हुनुहुन्छ, योजना बनाउन कति समय लाग्ला र तपाई क-कस्लाईअलविदा भन्नु हुदैछ । कहिले काहीं जीवनमा एक्लै भाग्दा आशाको भित्री ज्वालाले एउटा व्यक्तिलाई जिउन पर्याप्त साथ दिन्छ । क्यानडा आउने प्रक्रिया त्यति सजिलो छैन । त्यहाँ प्रक्रियाका धेरै चरणहरू छन्, थुप्रै कागजातहरू बुझाउनु पर्ने हुन्छ र धेरै व्यक्तिहरू संलग्न हुन्छन । आगमनको प्रत्येक कथाको आफ्नै अनुभव र भावनाहरूको लहर हुन्छ ।

ካብ ቲ ናይ ቀደም ህይወት እንታይ ተትርፍ? ምስቲ ሓድሽ ህይወት እንታይ ይመጽእ?

እንታይ ከተምጽእ ከም ዘለካ ምውሳን ኣብ ስለምንታይ ትስደድ ከም ዘለኻ፡ ንኽንደይ ግዜ ክትውጥን ከም ዘለካ፡ .ከምኡ’ውን/ወይ ንመን ትፋነዎ ከም ዘለኻ። ሓደ ሓደ ግዜ ንውልቅኻ ጥራይ፡ ውሽጣዊ ሃልሃልታ ናይ ተስፋ እኩል እዩ ብምባል ንስደት ምምራሕ ፡ ንሓደ ሰብ እኹል እዩ። ናብ ካናዳ ምብጻሕ ቀሊል መስርሕ ኣይኮነን። ክትክተሎም ዘለካ ብርክት ዝበሉ ስጉምትታት፡ ክትመልኦም ዘለካ ወረቓቕትን ኣብዚ ስራሕ ዝሳተፉ ሰባት ብ ርክት ዝበሉ እዮም ኣለዉ። ናይ ነፍሲ ወከፍ መጻእተኛ ናቱ ዝኾነ ናይ ታሪኽ ማዕበል ፣ ተመኩሮታትን ስምዒታትን ኣለዎ።

What did you take with you?

Qu’avez-vous apporté avec vous?

ماذا أخذت معك؟

Maja akasta maak?

Watin, you carry go with you?

چیت لەگەل خۆت برد؟

तपाई यहाँ आउँदा के लिएर आउनु भयो?

እንታይ ሒዝካ መጺእካ?

Tigist – Eritrea

“The last time, I remember we were together, our church, my Dad took us two at a time, not letting anyone know. “We can always start again. We brought one suitcase, we can do anything.”

I brought a “Gabi,” my grandmother’s white blanket. When she sat, she wrapped herself with it. Every household has a handmade gabi. My grandmother was like an angel to us. I also brought jewellery. Many didn’t know we were leaving, so my aunts and cousins gave us jewellery, silver in particular with shells.

I love Ethiopian orthodox crosses. I got one gold necklace gifted by mother to all her children. Today I don’t value gold, but I love fabric; my mother was a dyer of fabrics! I brought photos before leaving Ethiopia. This is a start today. I’m going to start to put together these items for my children.”

Hawa – Sierra Leone

“When I was growing up as a child I lost all hope, thinking that I would never have a beautiful life, I would never be in this kind of country [Canada]. I was in a place that, as a girl, I was going to get married and have babies, not even thinking about school. This was the culture I grew into, you don’t even have rights to go to school. You’re young and your husband is already prepared for you. So then when the war started, and my dad was killed in the war, no body was there to tell me what to do, but then I had no hope to go to school. I felt hopeless and useless. Then I came here and started to go to school.

Personally, I came with hope. That is all I came with. I didn’t come with material things because my hope was that I would come and get everything here. I was just leaving everything behind, thinking I would start a new life in Canada and I don’t need to worry about what has happened to me, I will come and meet a new family and friends. So I erased my old life. I came with my family, my son and hope. That’s all.”

Anita – Bhutan

“Stuffs that I brought to Canada are cloths, photos and shoes. I thought these are necessities to my everyday living. My parents decided what to bring and what not.”

Chabi – Bhutan

“Stuffs that I brought while I came to Canada are clothing, a few utensils, document papers from IOM/UNHCR, Photos, DVDs, USB drives, CDs, books, wallet etc. I felt these are some things important to me so I got them on my way to Canada. I used my common sense and instinct in deciding what to bring and what not, in addition to my previously resettled friend’s recommendation.

The immigration process in totality was a bit frustrating for me. The process took about 2 -3 years before our family was able to come to Canada. I was educated in Nepal and worked some years in some of the private schools in Nepal. After I moved to Canada, I got some employment training in Manitoba and have been working full-time for some years already. I am happy and equally thankful that Canada sponsored me and my family to come here. I feel proud to be a Canadian now.”

Srijana – Bhutan

“I brought my personal clothes, refugee identity card, traditional clothes, photos of friends and families, parting gifts from friends and families, government papers/documents, religious books. We had an uncle already who had resettled in Canada and got some ideas on deciding what to bring and what not. Also, my parents help me decide what I was taking along with me to Canada.

My experience with the immigration process was not bad although it took us 1 year for processing. We were the first Bhutanese to resettle in Edmonton in 2009. I got admitted in grade 9. I had language issues in the beginning but somehow completed high school. Then I worked for some years. Now I am going to a college.”

Naresh – Bhutan

“I brought some of the dear stuffs to me such as Yoga books, drivers license, kitchen items, clothes etc. My elder brother and his family were already here in Edmonton, so he suggested what to bring and what not. The immigration process was long. We were shown some of the photos during our process in the camp from the resettled Bhutanese communities, which motivated us to come to Canada.”

What was your migration journey to Edmonton?

Comment s’est déroulé votre parcours de migration vers Edmonton?

ما هي رحلة هجرتك إلى إدمونتون؟

Maja kanat hijratuk ilaa Edmonton?

Watin du you dae move nar Edmonton?

چیرۆکی کۆچت بۆ إدمونتون چییە؟

एडमन्टनमा तपाईको बसाई-सराईको यात्रा कस्तो थियो?

ናብ ኤድመንተን ዝገበርካዮ ናይ ስደት ጉዕዞ ከመይ ነይሩ

Naglaa – Iraq

“When I came to Canada, I did not know any English. I took classes, I went to school here, now I know English. I can teach my kids, I can shop, I feel comfortable to speak to people and I don’t feel sad anymore.

I miss my country actually, and I miss my family who I haven’t seen in 20 years. I always remember my life in Iraq. My country was awesome. I wish I could show my kids the houses, the streets, life when it was safe.”

Anonymous – Sierra Leone

“We arrived by 8am, welcomed by two Catholic Social Services Officers, and were taken to the reception house.”

Dunya – Iraq

“Since I came to Canada my dream is to go to school, to learn English. I hope to send my son to college. It is a good opportunity for us in Canada to learn and work. I would like to be successful to go by myself for shopping, drive a car, see my friends and have a good job.”

Bibin – Bhutan

“When I came to Canada, I went to LINC and ESL classes for couple of years. Now I am working full time and own a home. So we are very thankful to Canada.”

Imalus – Sierra Leone

“This is my own map, I made mention of The Gambia, Brussels, Toronto, Edmonton. In the Gambia I was a refugee. Before we left The Gambia to come here, it was very easy for us to check-in, we were given priority before all the other passengers, although we waited long for the plane to arrive, we were the first to aboard the plane. We were welcomed in Brussels, we also had priority to enter the plane. We arrived by 5pm in Toronto, welcomed by Canadian Settlement Officers. Check out was easy, it was that day, April 30, 2015, that by immigration, we were given new tickets and boarding pass to come to Edmonton.”

Naresh – Bhutan

“Although life in Canada is not as easy as we thought before, we are still struggling to manage our life. We are at the same time grateful and thankful to the government of Canada. We have now a place to Call HOME.”

Malusu – Sierra Leone

“I was born in 2001. The war was in 2001, then we came to the camp. That’s the year the government made us get an interview and then in 2010 he accepted us and we took the plane here. We came to our waiting place and we got an apartment.”

Reem – Syria

“I left Syria to go to Turkey, where I lived for 3 years. I applied to United Nations borders office and after 3 years was able to come to Canada. It was very hard to leave my family in Syria and come here.  I got my confirmation when I arrived at the Toronto airport. I have been in Canada for 1 year and 2 months. I never had a chance to buy anything from Syria because I was in a hard situation.”

Manyua – Sierra Leone

“During the war when we were running way from our hometown, our car had an accident. Many people died, many were hurt. Malusu, my grand daughter, was very young then and was thrown in the bush. We were there for three hours. No one was there. Then people came and were able to help. People heard Malusu’s voice and came for help.

After the accident they took us to a certain village. We travelled from village to village because everywhere we went the rebels were attacking. We travelled for long until finally we were told to come to Sierra Leone, because my husband was from Sierra Leone. We were in a particular town called Kailahun District. We were taken to a refugee camp called Largo. We stayed at this camp for more than ten years. While we were there, I was getting medical treatment, doctors were volunteers, but I was still sick. When I came here, I was diagnosed with cancer.

[I.O.M. Bag] This was my passport to come to Canada. When you get this one, your life is complete. You are on the other side of the world, you are happy, you don’t even remember anything! You get people coming to touch your body because they think you have a lot of blessings, so by touching you they hope to get this kind of opportunity. People think Allah (God) has given you special blessings, so people come and touch me to bless them. Someone who sees this bag will give you special treatment. Having this bag is a blessing from Allah.”

Suha Ali – Syria

“I was born and raised in Syria. My mother is Lebanese. I used to visit Lebanon all the time. My sons live in the United Arab Emirates. I went there with my husband and ended up coming here from Dubai. My mother had lived in Canada for a long time and she was ill, she had Alzheimer’s. She lost mobility and the ability to speak or move. I decided to stay here for her and then applied as a refugee claimant. I have been in Canada for 3 years. I brought my passport, a souvenir and Syrian sweets. Just simple, traditional things.”

Mihrican – Kurdistan

“What can I say? What I want known about my story isn’t just my story. It’s the story of our people. The struggles we have been through. We have all been separated in the 80’s and the 90’s. Our kids have had to learn other languages rather than our own language. We all have been so assimilated that we hardly know our own language. We can only speak a few words of our language. Even though this injustice causes pain, it does not show on the outside, we hurt very much when we lose our ethnicity.”

Volunteering Gives Me Satisfaction
From Broken Country to Helping Myself
I Tried My Best

Faruq – Kurdistan

“The world needs to know these people will never give up their identity, their history, their nationality.”

Dunya – Iraq

“We were living together as a family in Iraq. We were married and unfortunately when the war happened, I lost my husband and both my sisters lost their husbands. It was a big challenge for us to support our children. I hope to bring my family to Canada, but I have no support for them. My sisters are struggling in Iraq. I feel very sad. People are dying day by day. I hope the situation in Iraq is better than before. I hope the peace will be in our country like before. We had a big civilization in Iraq 7000 years ago (Babylon, Samaritans were apart of this land), I hope everything will be okay.”

Aynur – Kurdistan

“How can I ask for my individual story to be shared when my people are under this painful environment? What am I as an individual? What could I possibly want for my self? I can’t ask for anything when my people have no freedom, no self-expression, no home.”

Naglaa – Iraq

“I went from Baghdad, Iraq to Syria, when I was 11 years old with my family.  First we went to the camp. Then, I got married in Shaam, Damascus, and stayed in Syria for 9 years and then I came to Edmonton. I travelled by car and boat during the war, leaving Iraq in 1991, to Syria. The Americans had invaded Iraq during that time. In 1991, I came to Edmonton as a refugee, me, my husband, and my son.”

Abdullah – Kurdistan

“I immigrated to Canada on September 15, 1997. I settled in Edmonton, AB. and have been living here since. It was a little shocking to witness how cold it could get in Edmonton. My journey started from mild climate of Turkey to tropical beauty of Caribbean to end up in chilling climate but warm hearts of Canada. This is the home for my family and me.”

Kiki – South Sudan

“I had been in Cairo for 8 years, when we got accepted. It’s not that easy. In war, as refugees, they literally want to see how this will affect your family to be accepted as a refugee. When we came from Cairo to Holland, we stayed in Holland for 8 hours. We came by KLM Royal Dutch Airlines. This was the first time for us to see this very big KLM and we came to Toronto from Holland. We spent the night in Toronto. They put us in a hotel. We didn’t know how to take a shower when we got to the hotel. We tried opening the water and we didn’t know how to switch the shower on, we didn’t know how to ask them. We were very tired. We were exhausted. Nobody came to us. Nobody came to our rooms to see what we needed. We slept without taking a shower and during that time, I had my twin boys who were 4 months old. I was tired, they were very tired, it was a long, long, long journey. We just fell asleep. We didn’t eat. At 6am they wanted us to be at the airport to come to Edmonton and we missed that flight because we slept.

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Bibin – Bhutan

“I was born in Bhutan, stayed in Bhutanese refugee camp for 17 years and I came to Canada in 2011. I had to drop off my schooling in the camp owing to poor family economic situation.”

Ahmed – Syria

“My story as a Syrian, is full of many things that are bad, killings, sufferings, cruel things everywhere. I left Syria in 2013 and went to Jordan where my friend Amjad went. We walked all the way to Jordan, 100 miles away, and we arrived at the border and they did not welcome us. We don’t blame them because Jordan is a small country with a very high population and Syria was making the situation worse for Jordan, but that doesn’t mean that they leave us like monsters, we are humans. We left in the desert, but when we entered Jordan, we faced a new whole different life. Even though Jordan is our neighbour country, almost everything the same, the actual life is very different and one of the major differences is that they don’t respect others. As a Syrian, I had to live another hard life in another country.”

Saba – Kurdistan

“It’s taken a long time for us to enjoy a normal life. We are a very small minority here in Edmonton. We don’t have many resources. This is the first time we have told our story, we have never had a chance to tell our story, and we do not have the resources to unite us. It is a very big trauma for any human being, any nation to experience.”

Samuel Kur – South Sudan

“At 18 years, the leader of the community or family encourages marriage and parenthood, or becoming a soldier for the community. The community itself is a government, where the youth are soldiers to protect the community.”

Kiki – South Sudan

“During the war, you’re on your own, you learn a lot; how to be responsible, serve the community, so long as you’re open and willing.”

Faruk – Kurdistan

“The world needs to know these people will never give up their identity, their history, their nationality.”

Anonymous – Bhutan

“Pictures and videos of our childhood and family, everything I could think of is in there, when I’m homesick this is where I go. My diary, is where I have all my ups and downs, this is where I would have wrote if I remembered.”

Jalal – Kurdistan

“I was at my office working as an Executive Director for the Culture and Arts Ministry of Kurdistan. That day I didn’t go home. I didn’t have a passport to cross the Turkish Checkpoint. I had, with me, my first collection. In 1979 I published “The dance of the Evening Snow,” poems in Kurdish (all hand written, because we had no printers.) This collection was my first, I published 6 after this one, but this collection was my passport, from which came all poems.

This helped me a lot with the UN, because they knew I was a poet, otherwise people were waiting and waiting; I only had to wait a month. This was better than a passport. Because the UN trusted my writing, it gave me legitimacy. I also ripped 2 pages of my work from a magazine.

When I was in Ukraine, we paid a lot of money. I was deported to Istanbul, spent 3 months at the UN, Sabah and the kids joined me there. We stayed 5 months in Turkey where I was illegal. If I were caught, I’d be deported. Sabah and the family would be going to sign at the police station frequently to register to get a permit to stay. I was very scared. It was a very hard time for me. I was hiding at a friend’s house, they were searching for me. Sabah was hiding too.

When we were coming to Canada, one of our friends in Canada told us to bring curtains, garlic for dolma making and spices, because we were told Canada didn’t really have any. We passed through the airport easily!”




Al Hijra

Move From Wan Country To Dea Other


बसाई सराई


  • What would come with you if you ran for your life and never returned?
  • We all come with assumptions.
    • What assumptions are made about you?
  • Si vous deviez vous enfuir d’un lieu et ne jamais y revenir, qu’apporteriez-vous avec vous?
  • Nous arrivons tous avec des suppositions.
    • Quelles suppositions sont faites à votre sujet?
  • ما الذي سيأتي معك إذا هربت للنجاة بحياتك ولم تعد أبدًا؟
  • نحن جميعا نأتي مع الافتراضات.
    ما هي الافتراضات عنك؟
  • Madha sayaduth maek iidha harabt lilinajat bihayatik walam taeud abdan?
  • Kuluna nati biaftiradati. Ma hi aliaiftiradat alati tanawalatha eanka?
  • Watin, you go Kerr wit you if you runaway for you life en you nor ever go back nar you country?
  • Watin nar de bad tin dem wae den kin tok about you?
  • چ شتێک لە گەڵ خۆت دەهێنی کاتێ بۆ یەکجاری کۆچ دەکەی تا ژیانت ڕزگار بکەی ؟
  • ئێمە هەموو ژیانمان بریایە ؟ چ بریایەک پەیوەستە بە ژیانی تۆ ؟
  • यदि तपाई आफ्नो जीवनको लागि दौडिनुभयो र कहिल्यै फर्केर आउनुभएन भने तपाईसँग के आउँछ?
  • हामी सबै अनुमानहरू लिएर आउँछौ । तपाईको बारेमा के अनुमान गरिएको छ?
  • ካብ ህይወትካ ሃዲምካ እንተ ዘይትምለስ እንታይ ምረኸብካ ?

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