Citizenship: beyond a status, a feeling of belonging!

Becoming a Canadian Citizen is a dream for most newcomers in Canada. Thanks to our dedicated staff team and volunteers, many of our clients have been able to make this a reality.

Fatima Wadi arrived in Canada from Syria in February 2019. She felt very homesick in the beginning. Being away from her home country, family and friends and adapting to a new culture was hard. “I walked on the street, and I cried. I remembered my mom, I remembered my family. I felt I was here by myself. I was lonely”.

Our Settlement Services team helped Fatima to assess her English competency and register for English classes when she first arrived in Canada. This year, when Fatima was ready to apply for citizenship, we were able to help her take the next step.

Barry Adams, one of our volunteers, helped her to prepare for her citizenship test. Barry has been leading virtual Citizenship Preparation Courses at the NCC for a few years. Fatima said that learning about Canadian history was essential for her. She enjoyed it a lot, and the knowledge she acquired made her feel even more connected to Canada.

“When I finished my test, and they showed me the screen ‘You Passed!’, I started crying! It was a great moment!” She is proud to say she scored 19 out of 20. She emphasizes that Barry was an excellent teacher who helped her greatly. She is very grateful to him.

“Everybody in the NCC clapped for me and said ‘Congratulations!’. I thought: I am here with my family, NCC, they are my family here in Canada.”

Fatima has waited for this moment for a long time. “Now I feel I belong to Canada, that here is my future!” She wants to share this message with newcomers: “Just be patient, everything is going to be fine. This is a great country. If you work hard, you are going to get the results.”

We are so happy for Fatima! It is fantastic to see our clients happy and thriving. We are also very thankful for our volunteers. They play a vital role in helping newcomers to establishing their new lives in Canada.