Bringing together knowledge, experience and commitment to the work of immigration and resettlement. 

Northern Lights Canada stands with refugees – and their friends and supporters – as they navigate the process of immigration and resettlement. We provide guidance, share resources and build on our collective strengths as we work alongside people who have been forced to flee their homes, celebrating as they begin new lives and make the most of their boundless potential.

Because every contribution helps, and each additional person adds exponentially to our reach and impact. Whether you have time, money, energy, a lot of friends or just a big heart, we need you.


We are volunteers, whose strength comes in working together. 

By networking with other volunteers of all stripes - professionals, philanthropists, newcomers and advocates - we aim to:

What We Don't Do

Since we're volunteers and limited in number, we cannot sponsor all the refugees who need it. And because we are not an NGO or Sponsorship Agreement Holder, we also cannot influence government policy or influence which refugees are accepted into this country. 

Our purpose is to answer questions and encourage connections with Canadians who want to become sponsors. But not to be in charge of these connections!



Facebook page:
Northern Lights Canada: Guiding Refugees Home 

STRONGER TOGETHER: Together we’re building a network of volunteers and humanitarians to find hope and opportunities for displaced people worldwide. 



In the Fall of 2019, some friends and private sponsors came together to ask, “How can we share what we know to help make things better?"

Motivated and inspired by the newcomers they had met and helped settle in Canada, they asked themselves, "How can we build a network of like-minded people to join us on this amazing journey?”

Since that time, we have reached out to organizations, advocates and everyday citizens to bring energy and scale to our efforts.

Why We Do It

There are plenty of resources to help guide people on the private sponsorship journey. The Refugee Sponsorship Training program has produced a terrific website and some great videos that tell you everything you need to know. And the most exhaustive guide of all is offered by Canadian immigration.

What's missing, perhaps, is the why of sponsorship - the reason why everyone should consider getting involved in this terrific effort to help refugees build a new life. As Canadians, we have this incredible privilege of living in a country that offers us relative peace and stability. With that privilege comes a responsibility to help those who lack such things. 

Lending a Hand

That's where Northern Lights comes in. Whether you're writing a letter to your MP, putting together a new sponsorship team, or lending a helping hand to someone already in this country, we are excited to be part of the journey. And hopefully we'll give you advice and insights - and a sense of community - you won't find anywhere else.

Through the power of inspiration, education and a little perspiration, let's come together to find a  local, made-in-Canada solution to a global crisis.


Hazara Refugee Collective

Canadian Connections

Humans in Flight

Help Jaivet Help Others


is a co-founder of Northern Lights Canada and Northern Lights West. A marketing manager at the University of Toronto, he has volunteered extensively since 2016 to bring over 100 refugees to Canada and help them – and other newcomers – make the most of their lives in this country. Recipient of the Irv Carvalho Humanitarian Award at the National Citizenship and Immigration Conference (2020). In 2021, Northern Lights was shortlisted as a finalist from among 500+ entries for the Charity Village awards for Most Outstanding Impact - Volunteer (individual). In November 2021, he received the inaugural Charity Village award for 'most outstanding impact - volunteer'.

Shams Erfan

is the co-founder of Northern Lights. After a direct attack on his life from the Taliban, he fled Afghanistan to Indonesia, where he lived as a refugee and co-founded The Archipelago. Shams also anonymously blogged on the situation of refugees in Indonesian prison camps to bring their plights to the attention of the world. 

He is a member of the Writers-in-Exile group and works as a Writer-in-Residence at George Brown College and a writer for Humans in Flight. He has spearheaded a number of refugee initiatives, including with Lifeline Afghanistan and Aman Lara. He is widely published in the media.

Ruth Elizabeth Bromstein

is the founder of Walk Like a Refugee and the Westside Refugee Response, and an outspoken ambassador for the refugee cause and for the Canadian private sponsorship of refugees program. She leads creative fundraising campaigns and witnessed the life-changing impact of helping the world’s most vulnerable people.

is the strategic lead for Northern Lights Canada. He also serves in a leadership role at the Canadian Rohingya Development Initiative, and is a member of the Refugee Advisory Network and the Expert Consults on Race, Borders, and Digital Technologies. A public speaker, advocate and writer, Jaivet is community manager at Needslist and a student of Political Economy at the University of Toronto.


is founder and president of Barnes Management Group, a collaborative firm that aims to amplify the potential of First Nations people. After earning a MSW from Wilfred Laurier University and launching a career in social work, he joined Homes First, a Toronto agency providing housing and support for the homeless. He has become active in private sponsorship and advocacy on behalf of refugees.

 is a journalist and editor of The Archipelago, the magazine and writers collective. As a university student in Myanmar, Jonaid was forced to flee into exile. Now living in Toronto, he contributes to film and publishing accounts of displaced people and advocates, and volunteers with Northern Lights Canada to help refugees find a safe and durable solution globally.


Zakir Husain Muradi 

is a writer and editor for the Hazara Refugee Collective

Rahat Mansoor

is a social media and digital marketing specialist for Northern Lights Canada.

Javed Najafi 

is a photographer and videographer for Northern Lights Canada and Hazara Refugee Collective.

Heather Finley

is an advisor to Northern Lights Canada. 

Abdullah Sarwari

is the co-founder of Northern Lights West

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