Archive for March 2015

What's So Special About Vancouver?

Source: Jon Rawlinson

As an immigrant coming from a third world country, Vancouver is one of the best places on Earth. There are many reasons to love the city--from its beauty, its opportunities, and its community.  All of these things combined make the best city ever.

Vancouver--British Columbia in general--is SUCH a beautiful place. Have you seen the mountains? Have you seen the waterfront? Have you seen the creative architecture of downtown? If you go on a long drive toward any direction from where you are, I am sure there is something amazing bound to be seen. We are blessed to have great beaches and parks. Speaking of parks, did you know that our very own Stanley Park is named as Top Park in the World according to TripAdvisor? Yup!

Most of us moved to Canada for a better tomorrow. Although yes, the living expenses here are quite high, it’s still something worth more than what we had. Vancouver is a place of opportunities- may it be career-wise or education-wise or both.

My most favourite reason as to why Vancouver is so awesome is its sense of community. For example, the Vancouver Immigrant Youth Blog wouldn’t have been established if it wasn’t for a bunch of new immigrant youth wanting to make a difference! And here in Vancouver, there are numerous people who are inclined to change the world. Have you heard that Vancouver is one of the greenest places on Earth (or at least trying to be one)? Volunteerism is also on the incline because of all the beautiful, selfless people inhabiting this little bubble of awesomeness. Vancouver is also a diverse place. Everywhere you go, you meet a person of a different background! I always like to compare Vancouver as a mall’s food court- you can find food from all nationalities in one place! Vancouver is hundreds of countries merged together in unity.

We are extremely lucky to live in such an amazing place. I don’t know about you, but for me, Vancouver is the place to be. So be grateful you live in a great city. Let’s also respect its beauty by keeping it green and peaceful. Vancouver is definitely a place worth bragging about.

To Vancouver, the city of rain


Vancouver's Prestige

This city is one of the best places to be in. It has everything any person could ever want. The environment, culture, climate, and the location are all conveniently compatible to my tastes, as well as anyone I’ve ever talked to about Vancouver. For instance, the climate that does not become too hot or too cold, but still changes enough to justify a genuine winter and summer. The drawbacks, ranging from the minute to the serious, are altogether outweighed by the Vancouver perks. Anyone can argue against the livability, the quality of living, of Vancouver, but they will eventually run out of reasons. Not surprisingly, Vancouver is always included within the lists of the best cities to live in, and at the rate we’re going, we can expect a more attractive Vancouver, problems transformed to treasures unique to the city.
For now, I’ll only show the things I like about the revered metropolis, the ostensible problems won’t have a significant effect on you if you’re reading this. So, to begin with, one can experience a perfect blend of temperatures even in the coldest winters and the hottest summers. It never becomes too cold to hibernate in the home for half of winter. It never becomes too hot to drink 8 liters of water during the summer. Vancouver also has an attractive pattern in its weather. Rain doesn’t disparage the beauty of the city, but it highlights the nature found inside the area. In spite of this, on very rare occasions, Vancouver still gets affected by one in a hundred storms. On the other hand, there is a lot of time and good days to do something outdoors in Vancouver. So it’s generally fine to consider Vancouver’s atmosphere, also its favorable air quality, as a wonder of nature.

"ANIREVO 2014, Vancouver" by roaming-the-planet

An obvious reason for our good air is the vast amounts of nature found everywhere. The mountains, rivers, lakes, and forests make great activity places. There is a plethora of possibilities—winter activities, summer hikes, calm boat rides, anything else that makes us feel nature every once in a while. While budget could be detrimental to my points, many people in Vancouver usually do these things for cheap or even free. Stanley Park, as an example, is one of the things I absolutely hold in high regard. It is a charming place, the inside is wonderfully natural, it is a place that serves many people throughout the seasons, and the best part about it is that it’s a park, so it’s free.

Aerial shot of Vancouver, courtesy of Evan Leeson
*Just beside Downtown Vancouver is Stanley Park… which is consistently recognized as one of the best parks in the world.
Any rational person would agree that cultural integration is a problem for the old, not the young. It has also been stated, by many experts and TV figures, that racism would die with older generations. I would even assert this myself, I never notice anyone young projecting offensive behavior to others. This means that schools and their students are in good shape, the youth population will just add to Vancouver’s praises. A huge reason for this is the immigrant groups, the foreign transfers, and the location of the city. There are many newcomers here, barely any of them would feel alienated, they always have groups during their first moments, then they join the mainstream after they feel comfortable enough. Another reason is Vancouver’s location—it is at the bottom of Canada, beside the shoreline, and above another cultural hub, the US. It’s plausible to say that Vancouver has the stereotypical Canadian values and beliefs but devoid of the countryside-ignorance an isolated place could have. The high amounts of technological development is a reason, as well as the government of Canada itself, and again, debunking preset stereotypes, and behaviors, by fusing multiple cultures into one city.

Overall, I’d like to live in Vancouver, it would also be the most logical choice. However, personally, I just don’t want to settle in the place forever. Adults, especially those who are “easily bored,” won’t really like the perceived boredom in the city. A lack of infrastructure, perhaps as a result of a lack of population, might be the cause, besides the job problems. Anyway, this won’t be Vancouver’s conclusion, this is just the present. I won’t consider myself as part of the adults for around 10 more years. So, if Vancouver transmutes rocks to gold by then, I might just stay in here forever. A truly rare combination of simplicities.

"Telus World of Science" by Jason Mrachina
Rogers Arena (left) and Science World (right; sparkling dome)

We lack many things, from zoos to respectable financial districts… Vancouver is still a budding city compared to other metropolises, it is quite young, but we have enough, like Science World, for young thinkers; and Roger’s Arena, for sporty youths. Despite all the shortages, our infusion of nature with a diverse society (more than 40% have an Asian heritage)… offering us an influx of Asian restaurants, yum… altogether makes Vancouver one of the most livable cities in the world.

- Angelo

What's Up, Vancouver? (March 2015)

Photo courtesy of: John Biehler

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Vancouver Immigrant Youth (VANITY) Blog is an online space made for youth, by youth. Here, you will find stories and experiences written by youth immigrants who once felt how challenging it was to be a newcomer in Vancouver. If you are a newcomer in Vancouver (or anywhere in Canada), we hope to give you all the resources you need to feel comfortable in this country. We hope to give you tips and advices on how we adjusted to our lives here as youth immigrants. Through this site, we want to empower you to bring out your full potential.





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