Growing up in a multicultural society has its blessings as well as some hidden challenges. Nowhere can this be more evident than in the lives of young adults of new immigrant families. They are expected to live by the values of a culture that their parents grew up in, while integrating and succeeding in a society where values and lifestyle are much different. The challenge becomes even harder to handle when the cultural values, lifestyle and expectations of the country of origin is far different from the same of the country of residence, their ‘new home’. Add the socio-economic challenges of a new immigrant family to that, and you will get a ideal breeding ground of communication gap between generations or family members, often times leading to even mental health issues such as depression and isolation.
To tackle this communication gap and resultant unfortunate consequences head on, a group of social activists have joined forces together and started hosting panel discussion sessions / open dialog sessions. Their goal is to get people from all age groups, especially children and young adults, to participate in open dialog with the adults, to talk about their life, experiences, challenges and try to find ways to bridge any gaps. Thus ‘Time to Talk’, a forum to share views, experiences and ideas, was born.
So far, the organizers have hosted panel discussions where young adults have participated and shared their stories, experience growing up in a multicultural society as a member of a new immigrant family. The next chapter of Time to Talk is titled ‘Uncovering Parents’ Experience’, to be held on 24th March (Saturday) at 12:30pm at Access Alliance Danforth, 3079 Danforth Avenue, Toronto, Ontario M1L 1A8. The organizers have invited interested individuals to join the event and get engaged.