The court challenges program is an underestimated tool

We recently learned that the English Montreal School Board received funding through the Court Challenges Program (CCP) in support of its proceedings to contest Quebec’s Bill 21, An Act respecting the laicity of the State. The media widely reported the Quebec government’s criticism of this funding, but reporters unfortunately provided little information regarding its importance for official…

Time for radical equality

Having just arrived from Brazil in December 2019, my experience has been mostly related to minimum wage jobs and customer service. Isolated from friends, my face-to-face interactions involve employers, managers, co-workers and fellow essential workers. If anything, a lesson has been learned after working for ten years at universities and art schools – something I…

Finding sweet light in a shadowed world

What can we do now that anyone around us might be the vector of a deadly disease? We have to continue to live our lives. I’m a college student at UBC and in the Before Time (that’s what I call the time before this pandemic) I had a wonderfully full student life. There were parties…

Two hemispheres of COVID-19: Vietnam and Canada

We are living in an unprecedented time when global public health is at risk. The COVID-19 pandemic has made its way around the globe and impacted nearly all aspects of our lives. I’ve witnessed how my friends and family’s lives have been affected by the pandemic in so many ways. Since the outbreak can spread…

Eastward bound

We have all heard this phrase before: life doesn’t flow like a long, tranquil river. Life holds many surprises; some good, some bad. In my view, the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic represents a bit of both. Arriving in Vancouver in October 2019, I planned to stay for the duration of my working holiday permit,…

Finding a multilingual Eden

I remember very well the penetrating feeling I had when disembarking at YVR airport, the impression of having won a destination lottery: a maple leaf freshly inked in my passport, and a Canadian work permit. After spending months hoping for a positive response from immigration officials, I found myself on the other side of the…

Fostering a different kind of virus

Shortly after the stay at home order was issued here in British Columbia, my Zumba instructor sent an email offering free online classes. It inspired me to think about what I could do. Since one of my passions is writing, I decided to start a blog focused on kindness. One of the goals of the…

The permission to belong

The streets are silent, but a rare morning breeze is bringing the smells of spring right to my window. Vancouver is in lockdown, but its cherry trees are in bloom, and the soil of its many millions of gardens is awake and exhaling a nutrient rich fragrance. Twenty-two years may seem a long time, but…

World Collage Day 2020: “Collage is intuitive”

In 2018, Kolaj Magazine initiated World Collage Day, an international celebration of collage on the Second Saturday of May. We invited artists and art venues to hold events on that day to celebrate collage. We saw fifty events in twenty-five countries and thousands of posts on social media using the hashtag, #worldcollageday. The following year, the event…

Floripa, Brazil: my first taste of South America

When I think of Brazil, I imagine beautiful beaches, amazing barbequed meat, rain forests and sunshine. Last year I had the opportunity to stop imagining these things and truly experience them on my first trip to South America. One of my best friends comes from the city of Florianópolis, located in the South of Brazil.…

Finding a multilingual home

This is a multicultural and multi-ethnic haven where people from everywhere intertwine in a safe and peaceful manner. Walking the streets, it is possible to hear languages coming from every country imaginable. Before coming to Vancouver, I lived in Philadelphia, an ethnically and linguistically homogeneous region of the United States. Intermingling between cultures was not…