As I write this update on January 8th, 2018, it has been one month since our families have arrived in Canada. We are so thankful for this time together and we are so thankful for all of the support. Thanks be to God!
The past month has been a full month of learning about life in Canada, meeting friendly, generous people, learning English, discovering what a cold, snowy winter is like in Northern Alberta, wearing layers of clothes and boots and mittens and toques, tobogganing, exploring our community, learning new things such as how to use a washing machine and dryer, learning how to use electric sewing machines, shopping for groceries, attending church services and special events, playing in the snow, watching hockey games, visiting, using new phones and new technology, being thankful for our Swahili and French interpreters, laughing together as we communicate with each other using actions/gestures and Google translate apps, applauding great progress as our new family members speak English with increasing understanding, cooking together, trying new foods, swimming in a pool, having medical check-ups, learning about Canadian currency and the prices of items, having the first haircuts in Canada, using online English language programs, celebrating together, and so much more! All of this is possible because of an amazing community of support, providing accommodation, clothing, personal care items, household items, furniture, school supplies, transportation, and everything that is needed for daily living. On top of this is the extensive amount of paperwork to apply for Alberta Health Care and Social Insurance Numbers, to register for English classes and public school, and more! I know that I have not been able to share everything but I trust this will give you a special glimpse of the past month. With all of this is great love. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
Soon, there will be other new experiences…riding a school bus, attending school, getting involved in school activities, taxi rides, and more!
Our new families have a special place in our hearts and we look forward to the weeks and months ahead, living together in our wonderful community.
With immense gratitude, much joy, and continued excitement,
Cheryl Balay, President of AIRSS