A Refugee’s Resettlement Journey to Canada
Find out what it’s like to resettle to Canada. Learn about the free services and support from service providers and your sponsors designed to help you adapt to life in Canada.
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Transcript: A Refugee’s Resettlement Journey to Canada
Video length: 6:01 minutes
Upbeat music plays.
Title appears on screen: “A Refugee’s Resettlement Journey to Canada”.
An animated map of the world appears, with arrows showing paths that immigrants take to come to Canada and other countries.
Narrator: Canada has a long and proud tradition of providing protection to refugees at risk who desperately need a safe place to live, like me and my family …
The map zooms in on Africa, and a dotted line shows an immigration route between the Central African Republic and Cameroon. An arrow appears and goes from Cameroon to New Brunswick, Canada.
Narrator: and like many other refugees who have come before us to resettle in Canada.
A colourful animation shows a family on a plane. It zooms out to show the plane flying and then landing at a Canadian airport.
Narrator: My family’s journey was filled with anticipation, challenges …
The family is shown on the plane again and then in the airport, looking both excited and worried.
Narrator: hope …
The background changes and the family is shown in their apartment.
Narrator: and accomplishments.
Transition to a screen split in 2 parts. The father is shown on the left working as an automobile mechanic, and the mother is shown on the right sitting in a classroom.
Narrator: Before we even left for Canada, we got support and services to help us understand what we needed to travel to Canada, …
The family sits in a classroom among others with a large Canadian flag in the background.
Narrator: and what life would be like when we got there.
A representative from the International Organization for Migration, the IOM, stands in front of a classroom giving a presentation to immigrant families, pointing to a large map of Canada. The Canadian flag can be seen on the top left corner of the map.
Narrator: We were happy to find out that we’d be going to a country where all people, including resettled refugees, are to be treated equally.
The image zooms into the red maple leaf of the Canadian flag on the map, then it transitions to a photograph of the Canadian Rockies and then to a photo of 3 adults with different racial backgrounds.
Narrator: Everyone in Canada has rights and freedoms that are guaranteed, regardless of their background, gender, religion, race or sexual orientation.
The image transitions to a photo of 2 women holding up small Canada flags with the CN Tower in the distance, then a photo of a smiling man and woman mountaineering, and finally a photo of a pride parade.
Narrator: The person giving the information session explained to us that once we were in Canada, we would become legal, permanent residents right away. And in a few years, we could apply to become citizens.
We are back in the animated classroom with the representative from the IOM. We see that Ada, the daughter in the family shown before, is excited and happy.
Narrator: As permanent residents, we are free to live, study and work anywhere in Canada. However, as refugees, we were encouraged to stay in our initial community for at least 1 year, so that we can use the services set up to help us integrate into Canadian society.
A map of Canada zooms in to Moncton, New Brunswick. Ada and her family pop up around the city name.
Narrator: I think all refugees resettling to Canada should attend a Canadian Orientation Abroad session if they can. It helped us learn about Canada and answered the many questions we had …
We are back in the classroom with Ada and her family. They are listening to the presentation.
Narrator: like, since Canada has 2 official languages, can we participate in Canadian society in either English or French?
We see Ada with a thought bubble above her head. In the bubble we can see a red flag with the word “Welcome” and a blue flag with the word “Bienvenue”.
Narrator: How and where will my parents find work?
The image in the bubble changes to an image of Ada’s father in front of a building with a sign that reads, “Newcomer Employment Centre”.
Narrator: Where will we live?
The image in the bubble changes to an image of Ada’s brother inside an apartment.
Narrator: What will school be like?
The image in the bubble changes to an image of Ada at a school desk, with books around her.
Narrator: Are we going to be able to see a doctor, especially if someone in our family has a special need?
Ada’s mother and little brother are shown talking to a female physician.
Narrator: What is the weather like in Canada? And how cold is snow?
It is snowing, and Ada wears a toque, mittens and boots as she walks pulling a sled behind her.
Narrator: We were also told that as refugees, we will receive services from local organizations that help newcomers, and financial support …
Text on screen: “Government-Assisted Refugee”, “Privately Sponsored Refugee” and “Blended Visa Office-Referred Refugee” appear, with a map of Canada in the background.
Narrator: which will come from the government, or private sponsors who are volunteers, or a mix of both.
The map remains as we see the Parliament of Canada appear, with a woman holding a red flag that reads “Welcome” and a man holding a blue flag that reads “Bienvenue”.
Narrator: When we arrived in Canada, we were met at the airport, and we were guided through the immigration process.
Back at the airport, a woman greets Ada’s family and other immigrants. Ada’s mother holds a bag marked “IOM / OIM”. There is a baggage carrousel in the background.
Narrator: It was a little frightening being strangers in this new country, even if it was welcoming.
A photograph of a street in Moncton, New Brunswick appears in front of the carrousel, followed by a photograph of a worried young woman and a photograph of a group of friends of different racial backgrounds.
Narrator: Our fears quickly faded as we were taken to our first place to stay after arriving in Canada. We were given money for our basic needs.
The same woman is seen talking to Ada’s family and other newly arrived immigrants. A baggage carrousel can still be seen in the background. A photograph of an apartment kitchenette appears in front of the carrousel, followed by a photograph of a couple doing grocery shopping.
Narrator: Afterwards, we received other supports and services to help us get started with our new lives.
We are back in a classroom. A man gives a presentation about finances, public transportation, education and employment.
Narrator: There were people at a local settlement organization who helped us figure out things such as …
Transition to a screen split into 4 parts … we see Ada’s parents at a bank, the family taking public transportation, a teacher giving language training, and Ada and her brother going to school.
Narrator: how to get a bank account …
Transition to the same image shown before of Ada’s parents at a bank.
Narrator: and how to get around in our new city.
Transition to the same image shown before, of Ada’s family taking public transportation.
Narrator: My parents took language classes, which helped them when they were ready to look for work and study.
Transition to the same image shown before of Ada’s parents taking language classes.
Narrator: My brother and I started school, …
Transition to the same image shown before of Ada and her brother going to school.
Narrator: and we found our permanent home.
Ada and her family stand in front of an apartment building, smiling and looking happy.
Narrator: During our first year in Canada, we received support to pay for our apartment, food, clothing and furniture.
We transition to Ada and her family standing inside their new apartment as it fills with furniture.
Narrator: We soon became friends with other refugees who were privately sponsored. They were getting the same kind of support.
Ada and her family sit with another refugee family talking in a kitchen.
Narrator: We talked about how we all had to carefully budget the money we received, …
Cut to a photograph of Canadian money and a calculator.
Narrator: and how as resettled refugees, we did not have to pay for the settlement and resettlement services we were getting, like language training.
Ada’s parents are shown at the bank.
Transition back to a screen split into 4 parts … we see Ada’s parents at a bank, the family taking public transportation, a teacher giving language training, and Ada and her brother going to school.
Transition to the same image shown before of Ada’s parent taking language classes.
Narrator: But we did have to pay our own way to get to Canada from Cameroon.
Ada appears waving from the window of the airplane.
Narrator: Since we didn’t have enough money to travel to Canada, my parents took out an interest-free loan from the Canadian government when our application was being processed. We had to start repaying it after living in Canada for 1 year.
Transition to an animated laptop displays an airplane ticket, followed by a Canada flag, followed by a dollar sign and then a calendar with an X that switches to a dollar sign as the months flip by.
Narrator: Starting a new life in Canada is full of new opportunities.
Cut to a photograph of a group of individuals holding up signs in support of welcoming refugees to Canada. We can read on the signs: “I stand with refugees”, “Canada Welcomes Refugees” and “Canada is a home for refugees”.
Narrator: But like the many resettled refugees before us …
Cut to a photograph of a family playing soccer then a photograph of a woman drinking coffee.
Narrator: my family found out there can be challenges and worries, too.
We see Ada and her family talking in the kitchen.
Narrator: These thoughts and feelings are common. But as you can see, there are free services in Canada to help families like mine.
Transition to the same image shown before of the classroom and representative from representative from the IOM with the map of Canada, then to the same image shown before of Ada’s father at the newcomer employment centre.
Narrator: We also have a responsibility to look for and use this help.
Transition to the same image shown before of Ada’s family taking public transportation.
Narrator: Working together with the people and organizations who are here to guide us is making settling into our new life much easier.
Transition to the same image shown before of the woman talking to Ada’s family and other newly arrived immigrants at the airport, then to the same image shown before of Ada’s parents at a bank, then to the same image shown before of Ada and her family standing inside their apartment.
Narrator: We did it, and so can you!
Ada and her family smile while waving little Canada flags.
Narrator: To find out more about resettlement in Canada, please visit Canada.ca/refugee-services.
The following text appears on screen: “Canada.ca/refugee-services”.
The screen fades to white.
The Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada corporate signature appears, along with the copyright message, “Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, represented by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, 2020.”
The Canada wordmark appears on a white background.
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