Vietnamese refugees pay it forward: James Nguyen

When James Nguyen, Le Luong and Tom Tam saw the images of Syrian refugees trying to cross the Aegean Sea, with waves washing over the sides of their rubber dinghies, it brought back a flood of memories. As children, they had escaped Vietnam by boat in the 1970s. They were among the 60,000 so-called "boat people" that Canada welcomed as refugees after the end of the Vietnam War. Their hearts went out to the millions of Syrians forced to flee the bombing and terrorist attacks, which had literally reduced many of their homes to rubble.

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Transcript : Vietnamese refugees pay it forward: James Nguyen

Video length: 58 seconds

Urban music plays in the background while a video montage is shown of a dark sky with black windy clouds. The sky opens up to reveal sunlight hidden behind.

The screen turns from daylight to a white background.

Gold text displays: “Canada’s Humanitarian Tradition” with a red Canadian maple leaf.

A man appears on screen in a kitchen setting.

James Nguyen (Former Refugee): Just think about the generosity of our country, right? In 1986, we were the first country or people that won the Nansen Award, which the United Nations gives out, right, for our generosity in helping the Vietnamese boat refugees. We founded this project called Vietnamese Canadians for Lifeline Syria. It’s under the direction of VOICE Canada. And, so we’ve been inspired, you know. We are boat refugees ourselves. So, this is our way, for my friends and our community, to give back, to help those who are in our similar circumstances to come to Canada to live in this great country of ours.

The screen goes black.

Text displays in white font: “To learn more: Canada/ca.refugees

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