Christmas Fund: Regardless of hardship, being in Montreal is ‘a dream come true’

Aida gave delivery to a child lady lower than two weeks after immigrating to Montreal.

“Clearly, she was in a rush to get out,” the 33-year-old laughed. “I virtually want she had given me extra time to regulate to dwelling in a brand new metropolis, however oh nicely.”


Initially from Senegal, Aida moved to Montreal three months in the past after receiving a scholarship from the HEC Montréal enterprise college. However she didn’t come alone; she additionally introduced her 6-year-old daughter and Four-year-old son.

Her husband, in the meantime, remains to be in Senegal, anxiously ready for his immigration paperwork to be authorized. Aida expects he’ll solely be capable of rejoin his household subsequent summer time.

“I’m learning to be an accountant in a overseas land whereas elevating two younger children and a new child by myself,” she stated. “I assume you would say I’ve lots on my plate.”


Aida can be struggling to make ends meet. As she has not obtained a piece allow, she depends on social help which, in response to her, is barely sufficient to cowl the lease for her two-bedroom house in Côte-des-Neiges.

“I simply take it daily,” she stated. “Every little thing I reside by means of immediately might be a narrative I can inform my children tomorrow.”

Regardless of her hardships, Aida remains to be smiling. Whereas adjusting has been tough, she stated coming right here was “nothing in need of a dream come true.”


“Ever since I used to be younger, I dreamed of dwelling in Montreal someday,” she stated cheerily. “My plans had been delayed for a couple of years, but it surely looks as if issues are lastly again on observe.”

Nonetheless, Aida admits there are some nights when she feels significantly weak, and she or he finally ends up crying herself to sleep as a result of she misses her husband. To choose herself up, she reminds herself of why she got here right here within the first place.

“Despite the fact that it’s onerous generally, coming to Montreal was for the very best,” she stated. “Getting my diploma and ultimately discovering work in Canada will give my children the life they deserve.”


Whereas she works towards that aim, Aida stated she’s been impressed by the generosity of Montrealers. She stated she just lately discovered a way of group at Promis, a social companies group that helps immigrants and refugees modify to their new metropolis.

“I see the kindness within the eyes of locals,” she stated softly. “In the event you need assistance, there’s at all times somebody on the market who’s prepared to assist.”

This vacation season, Aida will expertise extra of that well-known Canadian generosity when she receives a $125 cheque from the Gazette Christmas Fund. Yearly, the fund helps hundreds of Montrealers in want by means of what could be a significantly powerful time of 12 months. Aida stated the cash will assist buy new winter garments for her youngsters.


“The chilly has undoubtedly been the toughest a part of adjusting to Montreal,” she stated, guffawing. “I’m from Africa, in any case.”

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