Somali refugee looks back on his journey to Saskatchewan


Mustafa Khassim spent 20 years in a refugee camp before coming to Canada,The plight facing Syrian refugees is similar to what Mustafa Khassim experienced fleeing Somalia.

“I know people living in the refugee camps are suffering very much,” Khassim, who came to Canada in May of 2012, said Friday.Khassim was 10 years old when his family left Somalia after the government collapsed in 1991. Their new home, for the next 20 years, was a refugee camp in Kenya.

“It’s not a place I selected or liked to live,” he said. “It is not great. It is not nice. It is not a good environment.”

When Khassim was able to leave, he came to Canada and brought his wife, four sons, and two half-sisters.

He remembers landing in Toronto where it was warm the day they arrived. He wasn’t expecting the colder weather of Regina.

“I never knew I was heading to a cold place,” Khassim said, recalling the help his family received from the Regina Open Door Society and the local Somali community.

Since arriving, Khassim has found work opportunities in Ontario and Saskatchewan. He is currently starting a new job in Regina and feels connected to the community.

“I know where my heart lies, it’s Saskatchewan,” Khassim said. “This is my home.”




CBCSaturday September 5, 2015


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