What it means to be Canadian for our residents

Every July 1, Canadians around the country and those scattered across the globe unite in a grand celebration of Canada Day - a tribute to the country’s rich history and diversity. It’s a day that holds a special place in every Canadian’s heart, especially the senior citizens who have been the bedrock of our society, playing an indispensable role in molding the Canada we know and love.

These seniors have witnessed firsthand the growth and evolution of this young nation, from its modest beginnings to its current status as a beacon of democracy and multiculturalism. They have contributed immeasurably to developing our infrastructure, values, and national identity. Furthermore, their efforts, passion, and dedication have woven a vibrant tapestry of Canadian heritage.

Canada Day is a time for all Canadians to honour the tenacity of these pioneers, who have collectively shaped the history of this proud nation through their individual journeys. It’s a day for unity, for celebration, and a perfect occasion to acknowledge the contributions of the seniors who have helped make Canada the country we cherish today. Here’s what being Canadian means to four of the abovementioned seniors.

Helen Bowers (Aspira Cedar Crossing)
Helen B_"Being a Canadian means having freedom of speech and being able to walk 
around freely without prosecution. I feel very fortunate to have been born 
here, and be a Canadian. We have laws that protect us, and are able to lead happy and normal lives. We have great public education provided to us, and universal free health care. We have a lot more options available to us 
than other countries do. We have the freedom to choose whatever we want to do with our lives. We have democracy, and the ability to choose who leads our country.”


Mary Kleinschmidt (Aspira Cedar Crossing)
Mary K_"For me, being a Canadian means getting a long and learning about different cultures and customs. Canada has become such a diverse country. It is nice to make friends with all kinds of interesting people. I am very proud of my country. I have always been proud to be a born and raised Canadian. It’s hard to put into words how truly blessed I feel to be a Canadian. Canada is a melding pot of interesting people, and I wish more people would see everyone as a human being, instead of judging each other on their differences."

Connie Reitsma (Aspira Island View)
Connie"I truly appreciate being a Canadian and living in Canada. I was born here and I’m pretty sure I will die here. In the meantime I have the freedom to enjoy life with family and friends, explore my surroundings and enjoy life in general. We have the privilege of experiencing four seasons with our weather, which is not always to everyone’s liking. Winter’s sometimes too long and summer is sometimes too hot but it gives everyone something to talk and complain about. It’s a great conversation topic along with politics, religion and sports. You can voice your opinion and praise or criticize without being thrown in jail. Canada is known for being a friendly country and this is true. This is another reason I am proud to be a Canadian. I love being among friendly and open people. As I’ve aged I’ve come to appreciate just how lucky I’ve been to live here."


Al Schwinghamer (Aspira West Park Crossing)

Al S 02"I am of Austrian descent. My grandfather immigrated to Montana, USA and from there to the Canadian prairies when Canada was opening up  and land was plentiful. I received a degree in Civil Engineering at the University of Saskatchewan and worked for many government departments before being elected to the Moose Jaw City Council. I also served two terms as Mayor. I am a great admirer of democracy and feel like Canada is the best example of this. I love the peacefulness of living in a non-violent society where decisions are made by people elected by the people. When I think about the atrocities of WWII, I’m especially proud of the Canadian involvement to bring peace and freedom to future generations. I love living in a country where differences are resolved democratically and not through violence. Peace is what it means to me to be a Canadian.
"

It’s clear to see how much Canada means to its senior citizens. We should all follow in their footsteps by making this country better with each passing day and celebrating its beauty, diversity, and success this and every July 1.

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