The Rev. Patrick Blaney
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Cynthia Bunbury, the coordinator for Bukhari's settlement and part of the REST steering committee sent this to the lovely man who has been Bukhari's landlord for several months. I thought you would all enjoy her update. I have a request for the group- for any of you who have been enriched by our recent experiences with settlement, would you send me a short note with your thoughts? I would love to compile some of them to put on the diocesan website.


From Cynthia:

Bukhari is doing well; he has learned to read Braille, is progressing well with computer skills and is in level 3 English class. He has made friends and seems to be adjusting well to Canadian life. The local Somali community has been tremendous in helping him to settle.

I took him to meet the Minister of Immigration when he last visited Vancouver; it was a thrill for Bugare, as they both come from Mogadishu. Bugare was very proud that a refugee from Somalia could achieve such a respected position in our government. It was an inspiration to him and he is working hard to improve his education level. He is looking forward to finding a small job soon, so he may supplement his social assistance and also be productive. He is very motivated to do well.

Thank you for your support of this tremendous young man. He has become a good friend; we laugh a lot together, and I feel he has become a second son to me. I have also gotten to know an entirely new group of Somali Canadians who are such a wonderfully warm group of people. In addition, I am becoming an expert in the blind experience in Vancouver, discovering new friends and navigating the many barriers to equality that still exist. The experience has certainly enriched my life.