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Richmond residents, Chinese immigrants journeyed north to immerse themselves in Canadian culture

September 26, 2021

Richmond residents Yu Jiang and Roger Xiao have just returned home from a self-guided tour of northern B.C, which they described as a “life-changing experience” in helping them find answers to their role as immigrants to Canada.

Jiang and Xiao, who went on the trip last month, said the purpose of the journey was to learn about the history of Canada and the importance of reconciliation by immersing themselves in an authentic Canadiana experience.

“After spending days and nights with locals and listening to their life journeys, we found answers to who we are as Chinese Canadians and where are we going in the future,” said Jiang.

“I’ve heard some people complaining the mainstream doesn’t accept us. But my question is: have you truly listened to them and gave them a chance to hear your stories? Understanding and embracing different cultures could help us reach better reconciliation.”

Equality is the core value in the West

Jiang and his group members made a stop in Williams Lake, where they were invited as guests to have dinner with Walt Cobb and his wife at a local restaurant.

“We were strangers to Cobb and his wife, but they still welcomed us with open arms and treated us like old friends,” said Jiang.

“They introduced the history of William Lakes to us and Cobb shared his election story. We then talked about our families, our trip and we laughed a lot.

“We didn’t remember what we ate, but the memories of our conversations are so clear – as fresh as we met yesterday.

“We come from a culture that labels politicians as super high-up figures and it’s impossible to have dinner with them. However, things here are different. No matter if you are a lawyer, a doctor, a mayor, or a plumber, we are all the same and all treated equally with respect.”

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