Maryam Jeejo

In 2017, I came to this country with my parents and siblings. Looking back, it seems like a roller coaster ride. I could not say a word in English when I began studying in high school as an ESL student (a student whose primary language is other than English). I did not know how to talk to others or communicate my needs. I felt ashamed and wanted to discontinue my studies at one point. My mental health was deteriorating. CCSYR’s Eman Hasan came into my life as a saviour. Being the settlement counsellor at school, she would help newcomers with translation, advocacy and other challenges. And I would go to the principal’s office and ask for Ms. Hasan anytime I needed help. She saw my potential and motivated me to continue studying hard and improve my English. It just took me one school year to earn an average of 90 plus in the English language.

To date, I’m in touch with her now and call her regularly to share the highlights of my life: Ms. Hasan is like a mom and friend. I just finished a Medical Laboratory Technician course this summer. And now, I’m preparing for the licensing exam to work in the hospital. I’m also busy with my upcoming wedding arrangements.