“Give thanks to the LORD for he is good, his faithful love endures forever” – Psalm 107:1

Shegofa was surrounded by war and insecurity in her home country, Afghanistan. Aware that after high school she would have no choice but to get married and have children, Shegofa left her country.

Shegofa desired more for her life and so she began her long journey to Waterloo. She went to India from Afghanistan and from India to the United States. Once in the United States, Shegofa skipped from Minneapolis to Chicago to New York City to Buffalo to Fort Erie to Waterloo. The teenage years are already challenging but the urgency to escape volatile circumstances made her adolescence so much more difficult than that of her Canadian friends.

Despite the difference in circumstances, Shegofa’s dreams and aspirations are much the same as other people her age. She wants to finish high school and pursue a university education. Shegofa feels welcomed at her school, is involved with different clubs, and hopes to be on Student Council this year. Shegofa has embraced her new community and the community has embraced her too.

Speaking of her community in Canada, Shegofa says, “They make you feel that you belong here. It’s not like other places [where] you are a newcomer and you are kind of an alien.” Shegofa wants to share her sense of belonging and hopes to bring her family to Canada. In the meantime and beyond, MCRS will support and encourage Shegofa as she continues her journey, no longer as a stranger but as a contributing citizen of Kitchener-Waterloo.

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