Youth needs to reconcile 3 identities: national identity as a Canadian citizen, Islamic/Muslim Identity as a value system and a way of life and Ethnic identity such as Pakistani, Indian, Somali, Arab, African, etc. Yes, we can be all three in a balanced way.
The Canadian charter of rights guarantees us to preserve our Islamic identity. In Canada, multiculturalism maintains and permits pluralist religious expressions and diversity of cultures. We should integrate with identity, not be in assimilation or isolation or be marginalized.
In assimilation, diverse ethnic groups merge and eventually assimilate, to the adopted country in different degrees, such as New York in America or Toronto in Canada. In marginalization, immigrants become marginal persons, sandwiched between two cultures; the marginal individuals or groups become confused, depressed and marginalized in the society. In isolation, an ethnic group focus on keeping their culture and values in ghetto area and avoid contact with the majority culture. Some Muslims in England live in this way. The new immigrants are likely to maintain a tie to back home by cheap travel, free communication by online tools and feel less pressure to assimilate. In integration, ethnic groups preserve the religious, cultural, and linguistic identities and participate in the adopted country’s culture, language, and political activities
We, the new immigrants in major cities, started interacting with each other at schools, playground, and workplace, hence integrated with mainstream culture but kept strong ethnic and religious identity. To preserve, Islamic identity, Muslims are being active in society in family and social issues, having a voice and organizing events, interacting, discussing and helping by volunteering in school, hospital, library and so on. Show our positive behavior to our neighbours and work colleagues in action not based on color, ethnicity or languages.