Beyond Borders

A short writeup on navigating identity and visibility in Canada

Chioma had always identified as an Igbo girl all her life. So, it was of no surprise she sought out to look for the word “Igbo” when filling out a form that asked for her ethnic background. She quickly realized she was no longer in her West African bubble but in the Western world. Canada, to be precise. So she sought out a different description of her ethnic background. “Black or of African descent,” that’s the word she had in her mind but yet she couldn’t find it. 

“Chioma, you’re to tick the visible minority checklist,” said Dayo. 

“Visible minority?? When was that decided?” She asked. 

Dayo laughed in response but Chioma wasn’t kidding. 

In her two weeks of being here, this was the first reality check she had being a Black woman in a Western world. It was then she realized that gender inequality wasn’t the only issue she’d have to face in the world as a woman but the colour of her skin would also be an issue.

Article submitted by Sobechi Madueke

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