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Our Journey To Canada

Meet Katrina Kryza. She is a proud Polish-Canadian. She is a graduate of the University of Windsor having studied Political Science, and is the founder of The Empowerment Post which explores ways to empower each other through volunteering, educating, and asking questions. Katrina is a humanitarian, speaks two languages, and is an advocate for women's rights. While reflecting on her family's immigration story this is what she had to say:

"I was the first of my family to be born in Canada. I grew up in a Polish-speaking household, with lots of amazing food!! I wasn’t sure of my family’s history until I traveled to Poland and met my entire family, who introduced me to the family tree, and the effects of the Holocaust. In school I was always taught about the Holocaust, but it wasn’t until visiting my family home that I truly learned about the toll it had on many races, religions, and countries. My grandmother took me to Auschwitz, a place she had only visited twice, and we walked and prayed and cried and looked at all the personal belongings on display. But when we got home—the place where she grew up, on the countryside, that is when she stood in the kitchen and brought me back to her childhood. How in that very household she had to work for the Nazis, how her sisters and her hid in the bushes for days until her father said it was okay to come out. How my great grandfather hid Jewish soldiers in his home and almost got caught but luckily, he spoke German and got out of it. How the forest nearby buried so many souls, and after driving through it myself, I found that there is a sadness to it. My parents, born years later struggled through the communism, and the poverty that came with it, and decided it was time to leave Poland. I’m not sure where I’d be if they chose to immigrate to the U.S., but I’m so grateful that they chose Canada. It wasn’t always easy growing up, but they gave me opportunities here that I wouldn’t have otherwise, and for that I am thankful. I’m thankful for the ridiculous ABBA songs my mother would blast in the car while waiting for my friends and I after school. I’m thankful for the endless amount of food and how it was always a priority to eat. I’m thankful for being taught another language, for their hard work and dedication, and for the push toward education because neither of them had the opportunity to go to post-secondary school."

To feature your family's story in the #OurJourneyToCanada campaign, please message me, email , or

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