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Immigrant Stories

Meet the Manihani family

Monica Sethi Darpan, 24 Nov, 2023
  • Meet the Manihani family

Name: Phalak Betab

Working at:  PICS (Progressive Intercultural Community Services) Society

Designation: Communications & Fundraising Officer

Spouse Name: Navjot Singh Manihani 

Why did you decide to immigrate to Canada?

We decided to immigrate to Canada because we saw it as a land of opportunity, where we could explore our full potential, enjoy a better quality of life, and secure a safe future for our family.

Which year did you immigrate?

We made the big move in 2022, and let me tell you, it was quite an adventure.

What were your first impressions of Canada?

Our first impressions of Canada were nothing short of amazing. People here were incredibly welcoming; it was like a giant group hug as soon as we stepped off the plane. And Vancouver's climate? Well, it's like Mother Nature's way of showing off – mild, refreshing, and four distinct seasons. The roads were cleaner than a brand-new whistle, and the air quality was so good you'd want to bottle it up.

Where did you stay when you reached Canada? Hotel, relative or friend's place?

When we first arrived, we were fortunate to have relatives who graciously offered us a place to stay for about ten days. It was a blessing because house-hunting can be like finding a needle in a haystack in a new country.  

What difficulties/ challenges did you face when you and your family moved here?

The initial challenges were real. Finding a job in our field wasn't a walk in the park, and our currency conversion math skills got a real workout. We were multiplying and dividing like human calculators!

How long did it take to get used to the people, weather or the surroundings?

It took us around three months to get fully accustomed to the people, the weather, and our surroundings. It's like the sweet spot when everything starts feeling familiar, and you no longer rely on Google Maps for your daily commute.

How was your experience getting a job here? Was it easy or difficult?

Job hunting in Canada was a bit of a rollercoaster. It wasn't terribly difficult, but it felt like employers operated in a different time zone. The hiring process here could sometimes take longer than a Lord of the Rings marathon. And, oh boy, the job scams were like a constant background noise in our search.

What do you like and dislike most about this country?

As for what we like and dislike about Canada, well, there's not much in the "dislike" column at the moment. Let's say we're still exploring this vast and beautiful country, so the verdict is pending.

How do you see your future in Canada?

Our future in Canada looks bright. We've worked hard to establish ourselves here, and the opportunities are immense. Our jobs, where we spend most of our time, keep us highly motivated and excited about the future.

How has your overall journey in Canada been so far?

Our overall journey in Canada has been nothing short of outstanding and phenomenal. Sure, we've had our fair share of ups and downs, but it's all been part of the incredible learning experience. 

Biggest obstacle faced so far in Canada: 

Well, it's Not Applicable, which is a pretty good sign, I'd say!

Advice for immigrants: 

Buckle up and be ready for the worst to get the best. It's an adventure, and every twist and turn is a part of the incredible journey of making a new life in this beautiful land of opportunity. Embrace it with open arms and a sense of humour, and you'll do just fine! 

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