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Canada welcomes over 200 Afghan refugees to Vancouver, British Columbia Canada | Afghan refugees
Representative image of Afghan refugees/ credit: Pixabay

Canada welcomes over 200 Afghan refugees to Vancouver, British Columbia

India Blooms News Service | @indiablooms | 19 Jan 2022, 11:17 pm

Vancouver/IBNS: Sean Fraser, Canada's Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship, Wednesday announced that over 200 Afghan refugees landed in Vancouver last night, marking the largest flight to date of Afghan nationals arriving in BC.

"Canada is responding as quickly as possible to the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan by helping bring Afghan citizens and their families safely to their new home. We remain firm in our commitment to resettle 40,000 Afghan nationals, and our partnerships with provinces, territories, and settlement service providers across the country are key to achieving this goal," said a news release.

The charter flight, which departed from Islamabad, Pakistan, was boarded primarily by individuals whose employment involved a significant or enduring relationship with the Government of Canada, as well as their families.

Community Airport Newcomers Network, a RAP SPO program provided by a non-profit organization, S.U.C.C.E.S.S greeted the new arrivals at the Vancouver International Airport. 

RAP SPO program provides winter clothing, arranges transportation, and orients the newcomers and their families.

Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) with the support of IRCC-funded Resettlement Assistance Program service provider organizations (RAP SPOs), have been delivering essential services to the newcomers and refugees including helping Afghan refugees since they first started arriving in Canada in August 2021 as well as the availability of schools, housing, and language training. 

The Immigrant Services Society of British Columbia (ISSofBC), a RAP SPO will help refugees adjust to life in Canada over the next few weeks in finding housing, a job, improving their language skills, and living in Canada.

The BC government announced the Refugee Readiness Fund, a $2 million fund in November 2021 to ensure that communities in the province are ready to welcome and respond to the needs of Afghan refugees and help boost local services as well as support for families resettling in BC due to the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan.

"The outpouring of support from Canadians for Afghan refugees to date has been incredible. Individuals and businesses looking to get involved through volunteering, donating, sponsoring, or supporting the wider resettlement efforts can learn more about how Canadians can help," said the news release.

(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)