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A Dream Come True

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Letter from the Editor

EDITORIAL

A Dream Come True

Welcome to Canada…
Je Ayaa Nu
me to work…he says women once gone out…are gone for ever…Yeah I know….in 21st century..and that too in Canada, some men are like that… That ways I am lucky….. don’t worry, he too needs a lesson/orientation course from me. .hahahahaha… Now I know why you don’t come out of your salwar kameez…You will realize, you will feel more confident, comfortable. Just try my trousers…for sure you will look very good…No No Seema, I am shy….Okay listen you can take a pair of snow shoes and snow pants for your Rahul, they are almost unused, and lets go to the basement and see If you need a blender and some crockery, you can take for your new friends. They will save some for their money. I also have a mattress and few sheets. Just see if they need these. We came here before them. I think, its our duty to help them establish here. Listen, we all have gone through this, but things will change for sure. If I can do it in two-three years, you will also do it….Look as soon as Manoj finishes his Chemical technologist course, you will be okay….You know why we take so

September 7-13, 2007

By Dr Neelam Vir

(L to R) Rakhi Prabhakar, Marcellus D’Souza, Kalpesh Vakharia, Ranbir Chauhan, Raina Sen, Raghbir Chauhan & Ranjit Chauhan

August 11, 1997 will always be etched in the heart of Ranbir Chauhan. It was the day he landed in Canada having taken a sabbatical from his government job in Chandigarh. Since then he has never looked back. Ranbir always had the urge to do something for the community. He had a dream. In March 2000, Ranbir began Asian Connections Radio. It was a one hour programme to serve the needs of the South Asian community. The radio programme soon grew with listeners pouring in their request and taking to the programme like a duck to water. They liked the format. They treated it like their own. The radio programme proved to be a platform to voice the many concerns of the community. Many social issues concerning the community were discussed threat bare. Because of the popularity of the radio programme, it grew into 2 hours. He began a TV show in September 2000 as well. Soon the radio programme was extended to 3 hours. This time too was not enough for the numerous listeners. The golden voices of Ranbir Chauhan and Raina Sen, that enthralled listeners with Kishore Kumar songs had attracted many devote and avid listeners. Soon the radio programme was extended to a 4 hour non-stop on 101.3 FM. During this time, Ranbir and Raina introduced many new and unique segments. The listeners were given their space. Their say. Many listeners called in. The phone lines flashed continuously. They jammed. Ranbir was urged by his friends and well wishers to diversify into print media. It was his way of solidifying the trust of his listeners. Thus was formed the Asian Connections Media Group Canada. Ranbir took the advice he had received. He thought this was the best time to give his idea of launching his own newspaper concrete form. Asian Connections was conceived and planned. What you are reading today is the

result of much thought and planning. Ranbir has always wanted a “different” newspaper. We do not plan to make our long term goals and plans public. But let us assure you that the reader will be paramount in our minds. The issues and concerns voiced by listeners on Asian Connections radio show will be delivered to the best of our ability. We have a dynamic team to help you. Besides Ranbir Chauhan, it includes Raina Sen, Ranjit Chauhan, Raghbir Chauhan, Rakhi Prabhakar, Kalpesh Vakharia, Bashir Nasir, Dr. Bikram Lamba and myself. We encourage all our readers – the young, the youth as well as the young at heart to write to us. Flood us with your stories, your poems, your recollections, your thoughts and ideas. We want you to be free wheeling within the available space of Asian Connections newspaper. It is for this reason that we are not putting a tab or limit on the length of the articles. We want issues to be debated and discussed. We shall present both sides of the issue. We want to support healthy discussion. Some of the topics that come to mind are the transition from South Asia to Canada, the funding of faith-based schools, crime in our cities, the future of our next generation in Canada. We expect our readers to keep us informed about all community events taking place. Inform us about any celebration be it a birthday, an anniversary or a marriage or a special event in the Gurdwara, Church or Temple. Inform us about common concerns – be it schooling, drinking, drugs, policing or migration issues. Inform us about any untoward incident that you may have witnessed. Inform us about any sad news that you think will help the community. We are here for YOU. You can address all your queries, suggestions and news stories to editorial@acmgc.com We look forward to hearing from you and keeping in touch. Marcellus D’Souza

Ting… Tong……Ting… Tong…Aanchal O Aanchal…..just check sweetie, who is on the door? Mama, at least its not the postman, getting your most awaited news. Every second you are waiting for the phone bell to ring…or an Email with a good news or chewing my head to go and check mail…just waiting for miracles to happen. Mama, God gives us bait…but we have to catch our own fish…this I learnt from you only.. Sweetie, you are too small to understand this. Every new immigrant to this country behaves like this….waiting…. when, destiny knocks at his door… anyways…go and open the door. Hi auntie! Mama, its Mini auntie…Oh! Hi Mini…. How are you today? Now what happened? Your eyes are wet again…today again you……No Seema…you know it was rakhi..so..  I understand Mini… all my brothers are also in India so…I thought, will have a cup of tea with Seema and feel better ….Anytime Mini…my doors are always open for you, look I found a very nice door piece, read what it says,“ Come as a stranger. Go as a friend… and you are my friend, can come anytime. Just make sure I am at home….I know Seema, you are always found in Malls or on the road hahahaha …What to do Mini …I feel depressed in these four walls ..so go out, buy something…and try to distract my depressions…. hahahaha… Aanchal hun …my darling will make two nice cups of tea…and don’t forget to add cinnamon.. Auntie likes it…..and get my favorite Oatmeal cookies too…Now tell me, what’s the problem? Seema, in the morning, I went to the mall and met a couple with a small child in their lap… To my surprise she was my old friend. They told me that their uncle, who sponsored them, kicked them out of his house the very next day …they had no place to live… no friends…So I brought them in my basement…now my Landlady is saying, they can’t live here for more then 2 days… I thought if you could find a place for them to live…Don’t worry Mini, we will figure out something… They are most welcome to stay with me till we find a suitable place for them. One more help, could you please take them to get their SIN cards and Health cards tomorrow as you know I don’t drive. Sure, it’s my vacations, just tell them to get ready in the morning and I will take them around. And Mini I would suggest, you also take driving license so that you don’t feel handicapped and are independent… Sure … But my husband doesn’t want

long to settle ? First reason is language problem. How many times I have told you to go and join the free language class in neighborhood centre. Its free. Most of us have good English but to learn the accent, the slang, its good to join these classes and you make new friends there. Everyone in North America is an immigrant or descent of immigrant. We just represent a stage of immigration. In the beginning, when we come here, we are cut from our parents and other family members to whom we look for advice, for support and we miss them. We should go to community centers, government funded agencies for the newcomers, libraries. you learn and also make friends. Besides, we get a lot of facilities and that too for free. You also get ready tomorrow; I will introduce you to one of my friends. She works in neighborhood centre. You will feel good after talking to her. Another problem here is, skills that we possess may not be necessarily in demand. So we are forced to do unskilled jobs at the minimal wages. You know to some extent we are also at fault. We don’t study, do survey before moving to a new country. Its job market, skills in demand and prospect places where we can find job in our field. Now what a person with agriculture background doing

in Toronto…its his fault…. Some people have difficulty making new friends. They don’t come out of their shells. We are not ready for a change. A human mind is like a parachute, it works only when its open…so we should be open for a change…Never forget 6 A’s…… acquire, adapt, adjust, accept, aspire and then you achieve…And then never forget to extend….a helping hand. You know I learnt this lesson last week…from a bird ..The Canadian goose… I was upset like you are today, after posting Rakhi…so went to creek where I go everyday to drop a penny and make a wish. a special wish …I just went down to sit on the bank and watch the nature, the birds, the flowing water…I saw a goose dipping its nose deep into water and coming up with something in its beak to eat…I was wondering…if it breathes…when its under water… All I could think was that it must have adapted to staying in water without breathing for so long…I learnt that if this bird can adapt, to find its food ….why can’t we try…and why don’t we help others to adapt ..to adjust…we cry, government is not doing this, doing that…just think are we doing our duty? Can a single person make a difference ..No ….I believe 1+1 makes 11…. I know a friend, she said “it took me 7 years to reach here, I also cried…so you also…” You know there are two types of people in this world. The first category, who walks with you, on the way they guide you and say, hey ! herez a stone, beware, watch your step…I tripped so be careful you don’t ….and other type of people who walk silently by you, never tell you about the stone, you trip and they laugh…in hearts of heart….So its up to you ..What category you belong to… We blame the authorities, the government. Just put your hand on your heart and say, how many times did you write to you local MP/MPP? Write to them, if they don’t answer then again write. We talk behind closed doors and cry…that’s it. Take a pledge with me today “I pledge to help any newcomer to this country, no mater he is my friend or not…offer whatever I can to him and keep helping till this country of our dreams become dream destination of the people around the world so that we can say with our head held high….Welcome to Canada…Je ayaa nu…. Welcome to your land of dreams. How many of you are ready to take this oath with me…. …together we can turn the earth…together we can make a difference… write to me… neelamvir@gmail.com


				
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