Every year, thousands of people from all over the world come to Canada to start a new life. They come with many different skills and the hope of contributing to their new society.

If you are reading this website, you may be interested in finding out more about Russians, where they come from and what it is like in their original home. Perhaps you are hosting a Russian family as part of the HOST Program, learning about Russian newcomers in school or working with Russians who have settled in Canada recently. Whatever the reason, you will probably find this website helpful. It will introduce you to Russia and give you some information about its culture.

Russians have been emigrating to Canada for more than a century. Recently, economic and political instability in Russia has led to increased emigration. Many Russians who come to Canada are highly educated and skilled. When they arrive, they may have difficulty finding work, learning the language, or getting their professional qualifications recognized. It will often take some time before they can establish themselvesin Canada.

The decision to live in a new country is not an easy one for new immigrants because many things will be unfamiliar. Russian newcomers will have the same questions you would have if you moved to a new city, town or country. For instance, they will want to know practical information such as where to find work, what school to attend, where to shop for food or how to find a doctor. Having a sense of Russian culture and customs will give you some insight into the lives of your new friends.

Present-day Russia has 149 million people respresenting more than 100 nationalities. Although this cultural profile provides insight into some customs, it does not cover all facets of life. The customs described may not apply in equal measure to all newcomers from Russia.

 Did you know?
In 1899, a group of Russians called the Doukhobors came to Canada to escape religious persecution. They established an agrarian community. Today there are an estimated 30,000 Doukhobors in Canada, most of whom live in British Columbia and Saskatchewan. In many of these communities, Russian language, culture, and traditions have been preserved.