The United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) project, The Dream Diaries tells the stories of refugee children from Afghanistan, Somalia, Syria and captures their struggles and their aspirations for their new futures. Inspiring and beautifully filmed, this series is important in gaining an understanding of some of what refugee children and youth experience.
Related upcoming event: This Thursday, January 25th, Culture Link is holding an open house to introduce its Children and Youth Centre in Toronto. See you there?
- “In 2016, close to 2.2 million children under the age of 15, or 37.5% of the total population of children, had at least one foreign born parent.
- “Children with an immigrant background could represent between 39% and 49% of the total population of children in 2036.
- “Almost half of children with an immigrant background were from an Asian country of ancestry, while less than one quarter were from a European country of ancestry or the United States.
- “Close to 15% of children with an immigrant background lived in a household with at least three generations.
- “More than one third of children with an immigrant background spoke only an official language at home, compared with less than 10% of their parents”.
Read the entire brief here.
Apply now for a 6 Degrees Junior Fellowship
From a 6 Degrees email blast: “Submit a project and foster inclusion in your community
- What: Become a 6 Degrees Junior Fellow or spread the word to strong candidates in your network
- Who: Ten changemakers under 30 years old will be selected from around the world based on how they propose to foster inclusion in their community
- When: Submit your application by August 14, 2017 to work on a project between September, 2017 and March, 2018.
- How: Submit your application here, or read more about the fellowship here.
“One of 6 Degrees’ signature initiatives is the 6 Degrees Junior Fellowship program, which seeks to identify and support young leaders who have made a commitment to fostering inclusion in their communities. The fellowship begins in September with a funded trip to Toronto to attend 6 Degrees Citizen Space (Sept. 25-27), followed by 6 months of ongoing project engagement with 6 Degrees staff.
“Fellows will benefit from the following:
An Inclusive Pass to all sessions of 6 Degrees Citizen Space, Sept. 25-27, 2017
Free travel and accommodation expenses to attend 6 Degrees Citizen Space
Connect with 10+ other Junior Fellows to discuss, explore and reflect on various themes of inclusion and citizenship
Benefit from extensive mentoring and networking opportunities
Receive a $2,000 grant to fund their community-building project
Are you eligible?
“This program is designed to support emerging leaders and their projects, therefore we invite applications from individuals under the age of 30.
“If you are not eligible, we encourage you to pass this onto others who are eligible or who have access to a network of bright, engaged youth.
“The deadline for applications is Monday, August 14, 2017. Early applications are encouraged. Apply now!”
How (well) do immigrant children adjust to new shores? Researcher Monica Valencia, Ryerson University, asked a group of children to answer the question through drawings.
She found that there were 4 themes in the children’s drawings:
- Sadness (leaving behind family, friends, neighbourhood)
- Anxiety (unfamiliar, sometimes hostile environment)
- Frustration (so much new to learn! Language, customs)
- Gratitude for friendship (peer support critical to happy integration).
See more immigration related stories by Keung here.
10. Syrian refugee children are welcomed to Canada with a dedicated play area at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport. #WelcomeRefugees starts trending! Shared by @viraniarif.
9. The 1000 Schools Challenge rallies Canadian schools to welcome refugee children. Shared by @SetAtWork.
8. StatsCan releases report on immigrant children’s performance in math vs. their Canadian-born peers. Research matters! Shared by @StatCan_eng.
7. Syrian refugee children: A Guide for welcoming young children and their families is released. Shared by @CMASCanada.
6. The UNHCR & COSTI holds a Human Rights Child & Youth Poetry Contest. Art matters! Shared by @marcopolis.
5. The 2015 Prosperity Index names Canada the most tolerant country in the world. Shared by @CGBrandonLee.
4. Forty-six visible minorities are elected in #Elxn42. If they can see it, they can be it! Shared by @Andrew_Griffith.
3. Canada elects a government with a self-proclaimed feminist prime minister, who creates a Cabinet committee on diversity and inclusion, puts refugees in the immigration portfolio, and who returns the multiculturalism file to Canadian Heritage.
2.Trent University recognizes child care champion Martha Friendly with an honourary PhD. Martha is an advocate for inclusive, culturally-appropriate child care and early childhood education for all children in Canada. Shared by @TorontoStar.
As part of part of the SSHRC project, Immigration Trajectories of Immigrant Families, the Ryerson Centre for Immigration and Settlement has released the paper Discounting Immigrant Families: Neoliberalism and the Framing of Canadian Immigration Policy Change.
From the abstract:
“This paper aims to develop a conceptual framework to assist in understanding how the immigrant family is impacted by recent changes to immigration policy in Canada. We contend that neoliberalism, broadly defined, is a helpful lens through which to comprehend some of the specific policies as well as discursive outcomes which have real effects on immigrant families. Based on our findings from an in-depth literature review, our goal is to identify and summarize the recent changes to the Canadian policy environment and to develop a critical conceptual framework through which to understand policy change in relation to families and immigrants”.
The too-brief discussion of the “ideal immigrant” and the “ideal immigrant family” in the paper is provocative, or at least could be. Children, as part of an immigrant family, are social policy orphans. There is little attention devoted to immigrant children, both from the academic/research community and the federal/provincial government departments responsible for citizenship and immigration. The RCIS papers lack of depth on this issue fails to answer the first research question posed in the SSHRC project, i.e., How do all members of the family facilitate or impede the integration of immigrants? The paper briefly touches on the federal policy changes to the definition of dependent children from 22 and under to 19 and under, for children arriving under the economic class and/or family sponsorship. This is an important issue to highlight. Immigrant children, from birth to age eight, are also an important group to address. A federal policy response is warranted. Children in this age group are ripe for shaping, so to speak. It is odd that given the federal governments focus on integration, they are not developing programs, supports and services that promote acculturation. And why isn’t the academic/research community delving deeper?
Update August 12, 2014:
The 6th On New Shores conference will take place October 16-17, 2014 in Toronto, Canada. ONS Tentative program. ONS Registration. ONS Travel information. The conference is capped at 100. Get your registration in soon!
Contact organizer Dr. Susan Chuang for most current information: firstname.lastname@example.org
For the 6th time, the University of Guelph is hosting an ‘On New Shores’ conference (search immigrantchildren.ca for information about previous ONS conferences). This year’s theme is Immigrant and ethnic minority families: Bridging across cultural boundaries. The conference will be held in Toronto from October 23 – 24, 2014.
From the call for proposals:
UPDATE: Proposal submission deadline is March 15, 2014. All proposals must be submitted to Dr. Susan S. Chuang by email (email@example.com), and must be accompanied by a submission form.
“the workshop will present a comprehensive review of resilience theory as well as theoretical and methodological approaches (both quantitative and qualitative) to investigate the phenomenon across cultures and contexts. The workshop is designed to equip researchers in academic, government and NGO sectors, as well as graduate students, with the skills and tools to study resilience as a process across the lifespan”.
The workshop is being held April 28 to May 2, 2014 at the Resilience Research Centre, Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and will be followed by two concurrent workshops on May 5th and 6th.
Using visual methods in challenging contexts with Dr. Linda Liebenber. A brief description: “Image-based elicitation methods are gaining prominence in social science research. This workshop will review the grounded theory behind elicitation methods, current approaches to using image-based elicitation, the value of these approaches in answering particular research questions, and the integration of these approaches into research designs. Participants will discuss ethical considerations of elicitation research, and the limits and cautions to consider when using these approaches. The workshop will also provide hands-on experience with the steps to organize and analyze image-based data, which include coding visual tools and developing coding categories. No prior knowledge of or experience with visual methods or grounded theory is required”.
Counselling children, youth and families with complex needs: An Ecological approach to nurturing resilience across cultures and contexts with Dr. Michael Ungar. A brief description: “When treating children, youth and families who have experienced poverty, violence, marginalization, or psychological trauma, the focus is often too narrowly placed on individual complex needs and problems. Such focus on delinquency or conflict between children and caregivers misses the broader sources of healing and resilience in people’s lives. This workshop will present a strengths-focused model of intervention that draws on the potential capacity of people’s social ecologies (e.g. friends, cousins, parents, teachers, community and cultural mentors, government service providers, NGOs, etc.) as sources of resilience in contexts of significant adversity. Participants will learn how to identify and facilitate people’s access to seven factors that enhance resilience: 1) relationships; 2) a powerful identity; 3) a sense of personal control, agency and power; 4) social justice; 5) material resources like food, clothing, and safety; 6) a sense of belonging, life purpose, and spirituality; and 7) cultural rootedness. Participants will also learn 20 skills to help the people they work with experience each of these seven factors in their lives in ways that are psychologically meaningful and contextually relevant. Finally, the workshop will discuss a five-phase model of clinical practice to make interventions effective”.
Bonus: If you register for both the 5-day workshop and a 2-day workshop, you will receive a 50% discount off your registration for the 2-day event.
Learn more about the workshops here.
See highlights from the 4th On New Shores conference: Resilience of immigrants – Coping with stress in various cultural contexts where Dr. Ungar was a keynote speaker.
The University of Saskatchewan is conducting a research study on the health of immigrant and refugee children. The research question is “What is the nutritional status of newcomer immigrant and refugee children and how does it relate to health outcomes?”.
The study – ‘Healthy Immigrant Children”, or HIC, is a cross-sectional design, taking measurements from a sample of children who are newcomers to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. The study hopes to identify the major nutrition and health issues and intervention needs for immigrant and refugee children and their families.
From the website:
“The objective of this research project is to characterize health and nutrition issues that affect immigrant and refugee newcomer children. There will then be a comparison of the impact of income-related household food insecurity on the health and nutrition status of newcomer children to those of Canadian children. In addition, the current support system for immigrants and refugees will be assessed”.
For more information, visit healthyimmigrant.ca
Amina Jamal, Mandeep Kaur Mucina and Farrah Khan are planning a symposium and edited collection of (as posted on website of the Institute for Feminist Legal Studies at Osgoode Hall) “critical essays on “honour” related violence. The idea for this anthology emerged initially in reaction to the murder of Aqsa Parvez and the responses of various institution and communities. As other murders of young women come to light in Canada, such as Amandeep Atwal, Jassi Sidhu, Zainab, Sahar and Geeti Shafia, we find that there are limited spaces for us to mourn and reflect on the complexities of these murders.
“Often the reactions of mainstream society and the questions posed to us are the following: is violence endemic to South Asian communities? Do some religions condone “honour “based killings? Reacting to the death and to the responses, the following questions became a central focus for our work: How can we begin discussing the complexities of violence in South Asian and other racialized communities? What are some ways to do this without reinscribing colonialist assumptions that violence lives in racialized cultures? Indeed how do we talk about violence within and with our communities outside of the parameters of dominant discourse? How do we demand accountability for gendered violence within our communities without serving the interests of institutional racism, economic exploitation, Islamophobia and hetero-national imperialism”?
Submissions are welcome from academics, community workers and activists from perspectives from sociology, critical criminology, education, gender studies, law, social work, cultural studies, communication and social psychology.
Suggested topics may include but are not limited to:
Popular media, critiques and questions
Grassroots movements to address violence
The “Honour” crimes industry
Sexual and bodily rights
Community conversations, healing, resiliency
The Construction of girlhood
Counseling frameworks and supports
Experiences in newcomer and/or racialized communities
State interventions and policies i.e. immigration
Role of institutions i.e. education and social services
The Editors are also planning to hold a symposium, inviting contributors to present their papers to “critique and share some of the work that is currently happening in the Canadian context”.
Deadline for abstracts: August 10, 2012. For more information, visit the IFLS website.