Calgary’s immigrant population numbers on the rise
Published Wednesday, February 13, 2013 5:10PM MST
Last Updated Wednesday, February 13, 2013 6:24PM MST
A report from the City of Calgary says the city’s population is more ethnically diverse than at any other time in Calgary’s history.
According to the report, 1 out of every 5 Calgarians belongs to a visible minority group. The number is a striking departure from the ratio of year’s past. In 1959, there was only 1 visible minority in every 350 Calgarians.
The Philippines, India and China continue to be the lead source countries for immigrants to Western Canada.
Employment opportunities, a strong economy, and improving their family’s quality of life are among the top reasons credited for the influx of immigrants to the Stampede city.
"We want to learn more, we want to acquire some degrees and we want better future for our children," explains Naji Akbar who moved to Calgary from Pakistan.
"I always tell my kids to take the opportunities because not everybody is given the chance to be here abroad and especially here in Canada," says Peter Pasion, originally from the Philippines.
Calgary is equipped with many agencies to help newcomers adjust to a new life in Canada, including programs to help immigrants find jobs, homes and other essential services.
It’s estimated Calgary's total immigrant population could reach half a million residents by the year 2020 and city agencies say they're prepared for the growth.