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Fostering Unity and Empowerment: Insights from ACOMI’s Community Director

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In Manitoba, a notable group called ACOMI works to help the province’s African community feel united and strong. Chuks Ojidoh, who’s been helping out for more than 25 years, is the director of community programs there. He explains about what they do and why it matters. 

“ACOMI brings African people together and helps them feel like they belong,” Ojidoh said. “We have lots of groups involved, over 50 in fact, all representing different parts of the African community. Our main aim is to make everyone feel connected and supported.” 

ACOMI runs different programs for different people. They have stuff for older folks, young people, and those who are new to Canada. Right now, they’re doing six different programs focusing on things like sharing African culture, helping seniors connect with youth, teaching about money, supporting young people, and more. 

One important thing for ACOMI is connecting different generations. They want older people to share their wisdom with younger ones, and they also want to help young people learn important skills and knowledge. 

Money, too, does matter. ACOMI helps newcomers with their taxes for free and teaches them how to handle money in Canada. They also give young people chances to work in the summer and run programs to help them learn and grow. Talking about tricky stuff, like how African communities see LGBTQ+ issues, is something ACOMI cares about. Ojidoh said they want everyone to feel respected, even with different views. They try to understand and accept everyone. 

ACOMI also likes to connect with other communities in a friendly way. Ojidoh thinks it’s important to respect personal culture while learning from others. By sharing stories and traditions, they hope to build understanding and friendship. Ojidoh believes in passing down stories and traditions to younger generations. It helps them feel proud of who they are while also understanding the world around them. 

ACOMI knows that newcomers have different backgrounds and needs. They’re ready to help whether someone is fleeing danger or looking for new opportunities. Their programs are made to support everyone. 

ACOMI, with Chuks Ojidoh leading the way, is all about bringing people together, making them feel strong, and celebrating their cultures. They’re an important part of making Manitoba a welcoming place for everyone. 

– Yuliia Kovalenko, U Multicultural

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