Somalia Prepared By AbdikarimIbrahim Nur Community Developer, Founder & Editor- In-Chief www.idhanka.com
Location Somalia is bounded to the north by the gulf of Aden, to the south and east by Kenya, to the west by Ethiopia and to the northwest by Djibouti. To the east lies the Indian Ocean. Area: The total area of Somalia is 637,700 sq km (246,200 sq mi). Capital: Mogadishu
Population • Population: 7,488,773 • Note: this estimate was derived from an official census taken in 1975 by the Somali Government; population counting in Somalia is complicated by the large number of nomads and by refugee movements in response to famine and clan warfare (July 2001 est.) • Languages spoken in Somalia are: Somali (official), Arabic, Italian, English
A bit of pre-history • From the 7th to the 10th century, Arab and Persian trading posts were established along the coast of present-day Somalia. Nomadic tribes occupied the interior, occasionally pushing into Ethiopian territory. In the 16th century, Turkish rule extended to the northern coast, and the sultans of Zanzibar gained control in the south. • After British occupation of Aden in 1839, the Somali coast became its source of food. The French established a coal-mining station in 1862 at the site of Djibouti, and the Italians planted a settlement in Eritrea. Egypt, which for a time claimed Turkish rights in the area, was succeeded by Britain. By 1920, a British and an Italian protectorate occupied what is now Somalia. The British ruled the entire area after 1941, with Italy returning in 1950 to serve as United Nations trustee for its former territory.
A bit of pre-history cont’d • By 1960, Britain and Italy granted independence to their respective sectors, enabling the two to join as the Republic of Somalia on July 1, 1960. Somalia broke diplomatic relations with Britain in 1963 when the British granted the Somali-populated Northern Frontier District of Kenya to the Republic of Kenya. • On Oct. 15, 1969, President Abdi Rashid Ali Shermarke was assassinated and the army seized power. Maj. Gen. Mohamed SiadBarre, as president of a renamed Somali Democratic Republic, leaned heavily toward the USSR. In 1977, Somalia openly backed rebels in the easternmost area of Ethiopia, the Ogaden Desert, which had been seized by Ethiopia at the turn of the century. Somalia acknowledged defeat in an eight-month war against the Ethiopians that year, having lost much of its 32,000-man army and most of its tanks and planes. President SiadBarre fled the country in late Jan. 1991. His departure left Somalia in the hands of a number of clan-based guerrilla groups, none of which trusted each other. Currently Somalia is adopting under one federal government with small states
Religion • Please listen to the Muslim kids DVD about Eid. • With few exceptions, Somalis are entirely Muslim, the majority belonging to the Sunni branch of Islam and the Safi's school of Islamic jurisprudence, although some are also adherents of the Shia Muslim denomination. Sufism, the mystical dimension of Islam, is also well-established, with many local jama'a (zawiya) or congregations of the various tariiqa or Sufi orders. The constitution of Somalia likewise defines Islam as the religion of the Somali Republic, and Islamic sharia as the basic source for national legislation. • Islam entered the region very early on, as a group of persecuted Muslims had, at Prophet Muhummad's urging, sought refuge across the Red Sea in the Horn of Africa. Islam may thus have been introduced into Somalia well before the faith even took root in its place of origin. • Although Somalian women were initially excluded from the many male-dominated religious orders, the all-female institution AbaySiti was formed in the late 19th century, incorporating Somali tradition and Islam.
Traditional Cultures Men • Somali man wearing a Traditional White Dress & Macawissarong. • When not dressed in Westernized clothing such as jeans and t-shirts, Somali men typically wear the macawis (ma'awiis), which is a sarong-like garment worn around the waist. On their heads, they often wrap a colorful turban or wear the koofiyad, an embroidered taqiyah. • Due to Somalia's proximity to and close ties with the Arabian Peninsula, many Somali men also wear the jellabiya (jellabiyad in Somali), a long white garment common in the Arab world.
Traditional Cultures cont’d Women • During regular, day-to-day activities, women usually wear the guntiino, a long stretch of cloth tied over the shoulder and draped around the waist. In more formal settings such as weddings or religious celebrations like Eid, women wear the dirac, which is a long, light, diaphanous voile dress made of cotton or polyester that is worn over a full-length half-slip and a brassiere. • Married women tend to sport head-scarves referred to as shash, and also often cover their upper body with a shawl known as garbasaar. Unmarried or young women, however, do not always cover their heads. Traditional Arabian garb such as the jilbab is also commonly worn. Sports • Football is the most popular sport in Somalia. The Somalia national football team is currently ranked 187th in the world. There are hundreds of football clubs that compete at the local level. • Basketball is growing in popularity. Somalia has a national basketball team.
Somalis in Canada • Canada has one of the largest Somali populations in the western world, with the census reporting 37,785 people claiming Somali descent, though unofficial estimates place the figure as high as 200,000. Somalis tend to be concentrated in the southern part of the province of Ontario, especially the Ottawa and Toronto areas. The Albertan cities of Calgary and Edmonton have also seen a significant increase in their respective Somali communities over the past five years. In addition, the neighbourhood of Rexdale in Toronto has one of the largest Somali populations in the country. • A container of Som-Can brand Somali coffee (qaxwo), one of many Somali-owned Canadian businesses. • In the early 1990s, Canada saw an increase in the total number of Somali immigrants entering the country, with some secondary migration from the United States. • As with many other immigrant groups in the Toronto area, Somalis have faced some barriers to employment despite counting many qualified professionals. This has been attributed to enclave economies, self-employment, language unfamiliarity, and various public policies and social programs. Many Somali businesspeople based in Canada have consequently sought and found employment opportunities in the United States as well as in other countries. To address the issue, the Canadian government, in coordination with the Somali Canadian Education and Rural Development Organization's Somali Youth Skills Project, set up in 2010 job-preparation training and work experience programs for local Somali youth. Part of the Canadian government's Youth Employment Strategy, the initiative is intended to help youngsters that are facing challenges finding employment to better access career information, develop necessary skills, gain relevant work experience, find decent jobs and stay employed. The Canadian Somali Congress has also teamed up with local Jewish community organizations in Ottawa and Toronto to offer mentorship opportunities to young Somali university students and professionals. The program is scheduled to span two years and takes place in various major cities across the country, partnering 130 experienced Jewish-Canadian mentors with 18 to 25 year-old Somali-Canadians.[
Conclusion I am very happy to have been able to share this brief presentation with such a talented group of kids. I advise you all to respect one another, all colors, religions and languages for you guys are all one in the community. You are the future of this beautiful nation Canada & the secret is believing yourself and respecting one another believe me you can be anything you want. No matter your difference which is what multicultural is all about, You are all beautiful . Thank you for your time.