Now an accomplished Toronto writer, Khan was asked by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) to write a book to help prepare immigrant children for a new life in Canada. It was officially launched by CIC last week.
"We want immigrant kids to know what to expect, where to turn for help," explains Khan, who has published six children's books.
The story chronicles the journey of two immigrant children from the time they leave their grandmother in Lahore, to their arrival and successful integration into life in Canada. The siblings experience the growing pains of being treated differently, struggling to speak a new language amid unfamiliar faces at school, and the embarrassment of not knowing such simple things as how to use a water fountain.
The book's foreword was written by Canada's Governor-General Michaelle Jean
, who immigrated to Canada from Haiti when she was only ten years old.
Coming to Canada will be distributed to Ontario libraries in June and will be handed to newcomer elementary students in the fall.
Integration into life in Canada can be especially challenging for immigrant children. Rukhsana Khan, herself a Canadian immigrant from Pakistan, experienced this challenge first hand while growing up in Dundas, Ontario in the 1960's. Her new book, Coming to Canada, aims to help your newcomers with the integration process.