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Statement on the 12th edition of the Era 21 Networking Breakfast for Young Canadians - May 17, 2016

Honourable senators, I rise today to speak about the Era 21 Networking Breakfast for Young Canadians.

On Monday, May 16, I hosted the twelfth edition of the breakfast in the Parliamentary Dining Room. The purpose of this event was to provide students in grades 11 and 12, from various backgrounds, with an opportunity to network with parliamentarians and community leaders.

Together we heard from a distinguished group of speakers representing the diverse experiences and perspectives of minority groups and indigenous peoples living in Canada. They addressed topics related to overcoming challenges and giving back to the community. I am confident that this experience was meaningful for all those in attendance.

The Era 21 breakfast was introduced by former Senator Vivienne Poy in 2005 in partnership with the Ottawa Asian Heritage Month Society and J'Nikira Dinqinesh Education Centre. I am delighted to continue this tradition and hope that the event spreads across our country.

As an advocate for youth engagement, I strongly believe that this event serves as a unique opportunity for students to make valuable connections and gain powerful insights into their own future and the world around them.

As a father and grandfather, I know that we all want our children to live better than we did. Therefore, it is important that they take part in activities that will help them overcome obstacles and fulfill their potential.

My fellow colleagues, in our capacity as senators, we have an exceptional ability to help young Canadians succeed. We can help ensure that every child has the same opportunities, regardless of individual circumstances or background. Let us never forget that the prosperity of our country lies in the hands of our youth.

Thank you. 


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