To help create a positive start, CARE Canada is asking Canadians to welcome Syrian refugees with a new online campaign.The Show You Care project launched today and asks Canadians to share a positive video welcome for the 25,000 refugees who will be arriving in Canada over the coming year.
"We have been overwhelmed by the positive response from thousands of Canadians across this country to welcome Syrian refugees – be it the tireless local agencies and passionate volunteers asking what they can do to help," said Gillian Barth, CARE Canada president and CEO. "We wanted to give Canadians a chance to speak out, let our new neighbours know they are welcome and create a positive start to their new life in Canada."
Canadians are being asked to visit www.showyoucare.ca and upload a short, 15-second positive video message to welcome Syrian refugees and share some advice for settling here.
"The messages can be funny, touching or personal. So far, we have had heartfelt greetings from prominent Canadians such as Mayor Naheed Nenshi, Clara Hughes and Catherine Clark and also a nine-year-old named Max who suggests new families should get a cat," says Barth.
"We see this is as an opportunity to give Syrian refugees a sense of the generous Canadian spirit and eventually allow them a chance to share their story."
'A space for positive dialogue'
CARE has been working to support Syrian families and host communities affected by the Syria crisis since July 2012. So far, the organization has reached more than 1.4 million people in the Middle East and has seen operations expand to support refugees in the Balkans.
"While CARE's impact abroad has been substantial, there was a real desire from our team in Canada to do more, to harness our experience with Syrian refugees to help at home," said Barth. "There are a number of excellent organizations supporting the resettlement of refugees in Canada. We wanted to complement their work by building a space that encourages positive dialogue, exchange and understanding."
About CARE Canada
CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. Founded in 1945, CARE began delivering vital disaster relief and humanitarian aid – much of it in the globally recognized form of CARE Packages. CARE has remained a leader in disaster response for more than 70 years while building expertise in international development programming to deliver lasting change worldwide. Last year, CARE worked in 90 countries, reaching more than 72 million people based on need alone. Today, CARECanada focuses on food and nutrition, humanitarian relief, and maternal and child health, all with a special emphasis on women and girls.
To learn more, visit: care.ca or follow @carecanada on Twitter.