Multicultural Association and Celtic Circle hosting night of international fare and music

Amanda Jess
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NEW GLASGOW – While MoneySense Magazine and Immigroup rank New Glasgow as a bad place to live, some immigrants disagree and have found it easy to assimilate with the help of the Multicultural Association of Pictou County. 

Events such as the International Spring Gala at the Celtic Circle, celebrating culture and food from around the world, help immigrants connect with each other, organizer Fatemeh Jafarnia says.

Jafarnia is organizing the event as part of the multicultural association, a group that has been beneficial to her and other newcomers, she said.

“Immigrating is not easy,” she says, adding that she was very lonely when she moved to Pictou County 10 years ago with her husband, Abbas, and two sons.

There was no multicultural association at the time.

“It’s a lot easier for newcomers to connect with what they need,” she says.

Although she had no problem meeting friendly people, there was a significant language barrier.

Luckily, she met someone who was kind enough to teach her English.

She says it didn’t take long to get used to living here, but the association makes the adjustment much quicker.

Having others with whom newcomers can identify is a huge help.

“I've worked with and have enjoyed many multicultural events here in our community because of the hard work of the multicultural society,” Jannine Howell, venue co-ordinator at the Celtic Circle, said. “I think the reason Pictou County is the worst place for new immigrants is the same reason why it's the worst for local residents and that’s because there is very little opportunity for work. We need to encourage immigration and investment in our community.”

A number of members from the non-profit organization are cooking a dish from their country, including Jafarnia who is making an Iranian dish.

Other dishes include fare from China, India, and East Turkestan.

There will also be entertainment from Rodolfo Peres, a Cuban guitarist and singer.

They held a smaller event at Jafarnia’s home last year, but hope to make it a bigger annual event.

Tickets for the event on April 5 are $50 and include entertainment and a buffet-style meal. Proceeds go towards the association.

It begins at 6 p.m.

On Twitter: @NGNewsAmanda 

Geographic location: Pictou County, China, India

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