Champions for Children and Youth 2011 BC Summit Report
February 15, 2012
In October, more than 120 immigrant and refugee youth from more than 30 countries gathered in Vancouver to share their experiences at the “Champions for Children and Youth BC Summit.”
The Representative together with the Vancouver Foundation brought together more than 120 immigrant and refugee youth from more than 30 countries at the 2011 Fresh Voices from Long Journeys Summit. They brought with them a wealth of experience informed by their backgrounds, their entry points to Canada and their legal status here.
Together, they reflected a broad spectrum of newcomers’ perspectives – from those who came with their families, speaking fluent English, to those who had only recently arrived and were still awaiting word on their claims for refugee status. Many had fled from war and oppression but most still felt strong ties to their homelands.
The energy was monumental as day one of the Summit kicked off with a youth only led morning session.
The laughter filled the room as the young people prepared for the afternoon with the “fancy people.”
Later that same day they shared their stories, ideas and recommendations with approximately 60 invited adult guests – business people, political leaders and policy makers who had the capacity not just to listen but also to respond to the issues raised.