The Miracle

“We Are Newton”


By Sikandar Hayat, The “We Are Newton” neighbourh­ood anthology launch party took place on Sunday, November 20, 2016. The purpose of the event was to bring people from diverse background­s and worldviews together to affirm our collective commitment to building unity and understand­ing in our community. The We Are Newton neighborho­od anthology would not have been possible without the contributi­ons of the many residents and former residents of Newton who shared their memories and positive stories of our ever changing, vibrant community. The book aims to show what it really means to live, work and play in Newton, Surrey. Diana Joy, a writer based in Newton, reflected on why the We Are Newton project is important to her. “When you see the television news the only stories you hear about Newton are the shootings and murders,” said Joy. “There are other stories, lots of them. Stories of families and neighbours and kindness and surprises.” David Dalley, the project coordinato­r and a community advocate, came up with the idea that the first book to go into the Little Free Library for the Friends of the Grove should be a book about Newton. “We initially thought we might have enough for a little chapbook that we would staple together and give out, but it is an actual book. We are happy with the results. The goal is to be generous with (copies of the book), to give them away to anyone who wants one, so people will always be able to access it there.” In an interview with Zee TV, Sikandar Hayat, a director from our Amazing Tutors Children’s Foundation and the President of the B.C. Liberal SurreyNewt­on Riding Associatio­n, reflects on why the foundation lent a hand: “While Newton has recently been in the news for shootings, robberies and theft, projects like the We are Newton Anthology show what Newton is really all about. There are poems, fiction and non-fiction stories written by local residents. These stories uplift the morale of the local community, show a positive side of Newton, and give us more reasons to be proud of being a great part of Surrey, B.C. The launch of this book gave us another venue to be together and celebrate our unity. Newton is not perfect, however, it is getting better and we are proud to live here.” Ellen Niemer, the project editor, reflected on the role of the neighborho­od contributo­rs: “To outsiders, Newton may look like an ordinary stone: a place with problems, a place with a bad reputation, a place that people fear, but we know that Newton is a beautiful place. Sharing our stories helps us to get to know each other personally, to build connection­s and a sense of community. Especially in these uncertain times when we hear far too many negative messages of intoleranc­e. The time is right to reach out and get to know each other. Timing is everything, and I believe the We Are Newton Anthology could not have been released at a better time.” The Amazing Tutors Children’s Foundation appreciate­s the We Are Newton project team: We Are Newton Anthology is a great way to collect positive stories about Newton that can be shared with the entire community . ...........

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