This year, my big TV crush is undoubtedly the series Ethnic Immigrants. Moving and inspiring. Over the course of the episodes, the formidable host Raed Hammoud introduces us to immigrants who, in the regions, have chosen to settle there for good.
It's them and them, “native immigrants”. What a wonderful expression! In fact, it perfectly reflects their daring decision to ignore the Montreal sirens.
They chose instead to marry their own original roots with those that, all new – family, friendly and professional – , will now grow “in the region”.
Their life journeys are unforgettable lessons of courage, imagination and love. Because one should never underestimate the immense efforts and the many mournings that the very decision to leave one's native land for an unknown land can require.
Each story commands the admiration and gratitude of see them also determined to become full-fledged Quebecers. Quebecers by adoption, heart and mind.
Not to mention the meeting of local residents who welcome them. Sometimes with a little pangs, but much more often with arms and minds wide open.
These new Quebecers work hard. Those who do not already know French learn it little by little in this irresistible immersion in the region. And they do so while cherishing their native culture and language. These are marvelously fertile cross-cultural nuptials for the future.
We discover, among others, Edem Amegbo. Of Togolese origin, in Estrie, he became a farmer. In Rimouski, the artist Lisan D. Chng, from Singapore, creates her superb mosaics to encourage rapprochement and sharing.
In Sainte-Martine, Paul Akpa Barnabé, of Ivorian origin, is there became the abbot covering three parishes. Active like no one else in the community, the man impresses, believe me.
In Sainte-Thècle, Dora Maria Caro Rios, who arrived from Acapulco after falling in love with a Quebecer, opened a Mexican restaurant beaming with happiness.
In Percé, appreciated by all, the Ivorian of origin Jean-François Kacou was appointed general manager of the City. In Lebel-sur-Quévillon, the Tunisian of origin Salah Ben Hassouna, electrician, also became the organizer of Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day.
In Piopolis, it is impossible to resist history overwhelming by Spomenka Adzic. After fleeing the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina with her husband and children, she bought the general store in her new village of which she is now an essential link.
Thinking outside the box
To watch Ethnic Immigrants is to think outside the box of our quiet certainties. It's getting out of Montreal – which many long-time residents have themselves left for regions with the pandemic.
It's discovering new Quebecers who are madly in love with their village and their fellow citizens. It is to be privileged witnesses of the happy interbreeding of the Quebec population, all roots combined.
In this, Stem Immigrants is part of the fertile lineage of the TV series < em>Tenir Salon by Sophie Fouron, of which I told you here last year all the good that I also think of it.
You can also view the two series on the TV5 Unis website: www.tv5unis.ca
You won't regret it…