Advantage: Canada – Multiculturalism

Advantage Canada: Multiculturalism

Canadian multiculturalism isn’t just a beautiful idea, it’s the law! It was the first country in the world to adopt multiculturalism as an official policy in 1971.

The Government of Canada puts it well (albeit dryly):

“All Canadians are guaranteed equality before the law and equality of opportunity regardless of their origins. Canada’s laws and policies recognise Canada’s diversity by race, cultural heritage, ethnicity, religion, ancestry and place of origin and guarantee to all men and women complete freedom of conscience, of thought, belief, opinion expression, association and peaceful assembly. All of these rights, our freedom and our dignity, are guaranteed through our Canadian citizenship, our Canadian Constitution, and our Charter of Rights and Freedoms.”

Like in many other countries, immigrants to Canada tend to settle in the same neighbourhoods as their former countrymen and women. As a recent immigrant, I can completely understand this! There’s so much newness when you immigrate, it’s nice to have a few things that aren’t completely foreign around you. Unlike elsewhere in the world, however, immigrants to Canada actively take part in their new society. This tends to lead immigrants to Canada to achieve high levels of economic success, education and social integration. That also means that Canadians of all stripes tend to see immigration as a positive thing. Yay multiculturalism!

Canadians live by a set of values and beliefs which are open to a wide variety of cultural expressions and do not demand strict integration. What is asked of from immigrants is the same as is asked of all Canadians: respect for Canadian laws and institutions, acceptance of other cultures and participation in society.

It’s not much of a surprise, then, that immigrants to Canada tend to adopt “traditional” Canadian attitudes with their own cultural spin. My favourite example of this is Hockey Night in Canada that is broadcast not only in Canada’s official languages of French and English but also in Punjabi!

I’m not saying that the system is perfect. Like any rule, there is always an exception. But I think it’s a great example of how welcoming people from a wide variety of backgrounds can make a society even better.

Curious what else I think is great about the Canada? Check out my full list of Advantage: Canada posts.

Advantage: Canada – Cottage Life

There is nothing quite like packing up your car, struggling through the traffic, and spending a (long) weekend at a cottage! It’s one of the great things about living in southern Ontario, and something I’ve been doing for nearly all of my life.

Lyndsey Cottage4
On the dock in Rondeau

My earliest cottaging experiences were at my mom’s family’s cottage in Rondeau Provincial Park, where we would windsurf, waterski, play croquet and tennis, and go for long nature walks in the park. While my later cottage experiences have been in different areas of the province, including Perth, Kinmount, Apsley, and Huntsville, the feeling is still the same: relaxation, good food, friends and fun! My favourite things about cottaging include: BBQ (more about this in another Advantage: Canada post, that’s for sure!)

2015-05-23 Toronto Trip
RB and RS working the bbq during our trip to the GTA

Getting so hot it’s necessary to jump in the water for a swim

2007 - Frec Weekend
One of the coolest pictures anyone ever took of me. Credit to my friend Jen!

Going for boat rides

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Heading out for a cruise along Long lake

Water sports

2005 - Wakeboarding
My first (and only) attempt at a tantrum on my wakeboard
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Wakesurfing

Nature walks

2015-05-23 Toronto Trip
On a hike between Anstruther Lake and Rathburn Lake in the Kawartha Islands Provincial Park

Games

2007 - Frec Weekend
Cups (or Fricket, apparently!)
Matt's Cottage 172
Jenga
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Ringers
Settlers
Settlers of Catan

Building a giant floating island

The Island
There’s nothing quite like swimming out to the middle of the lake to hang out

Sitting by the water and reading

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I couldn’t find any reading photos, so this is a beautiful one by Glenn Buckholtz

What’s your favourite thing about cottaging?