For Fouzia Al Hashish and thousands of other Syrian refugees, the time has come to put the finishing touches on their new national identity.
The 23-year-old mother’s 2019 goal is already quite clear: a Canadian citizenship and a dark blue passport for herself, husband Mohammad Al Mnajer, and their children.
However, refugee advocates say obstacles remain for many other applicants surviving on welfare, who remain uncertain about how they’ll pay hefty fees or pass the language certifications.
Syrian refugee family Mohammad Al Mnajer and wife Fouzia Al Hashish sit with their three daughters Judy, right, Jaidaa, centre, and Baylasan at their home in Mississauga, Ont., Dec. 13. (FRANK GUNN / THE CANADIAN PRESS)