What do Canada and Greece Have in Common?

greece-canadaDifferences between countries are always the easiest things to point out. However, did you ever stop to consider the similarities between two countries unlikely to be compared, such as Canada and Greece? Yet there are more commonalities between Canada and Greece than one might first imagine.

1. Let’s start with the small things. Language. Yes, that’s right. We are talking words here, and, although there are immeasurable differences between Greek and English (or French, for that matter), there are two words that these countries have in common and use frequently: “sorry,” used the same way in each country); and “eh,” used in both countries to encourage discussion.

2. Both countries also have very extensive coastlines, and if one ignores the difference in temperature, they actually look pretty similar.

Lake Ontario, Sandbanks Provincial Park
Lake Ontario, Sandbanks Provincial Park
Beach near Athens, Greece

3. Canada and Greece are both members of NATO.

4. A job crisis is another factor these two countries share. Skilled immigrants in Canada tend to struggle to find decent employment. There is also a well-defined line in Greece when it comes to immigrants finding employment. In Greece, the language barrier seems to be the main obstacle, while in Canada, the main issue is the previous work experience in Canada which many employers require.

5. Food is another thing the two countries have in common. Let’s face it, Canada has great food (not just because they have a lot of Greeks, but that helps!). Historically, Greek people who have emigrated to Canada have tended to open up restaurants showcasing their national cuisine. Toronto’s Greek Town is well-known for having one of the most successful and largest Greek fests in the world!

Toronto’s Greektown food

6. Valuing liberty and democracy. These two concepts go hand-in-hand, and just as Greece is the cradle of democracy, Canadians truly value their quality of life and justice. Valuing the civil rights of equality, fairness to all, safety and health for their families is very important to both Greeks and Canadians.

Greece is the Cradle of Democracy

7. According to the “Ranking World Military Strength” report by Global Firepower, both countries have about the same modern military abilities. This takes into consideration their potential war-making capabilities across land, sea and air, fought with conventional weapons.

8. One commonality we hope you never have to worry about is the equal likelihood of being murdered in either country. According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, 1.4 in every 100,000 people are murdered annually both Greece and Canada.

9. Greece is a Christian country and the principal religion in Canada is also Christianity. As recently as the 1971 census, almost 90 percent of the Canadian population was Christian.

Greek-Toronto-St-Nicholas-church
St. Nicholas Church, Toronto

10. One other thing that these two countries have in common is Greeks! There are more Greek-Canadians than you might realize living in Canada, the majority of them residing in Toronto and Montreal. According to the 2016 census, there were 271,405 Canadians who were Greek by ancestry as well as 62,715 native-born Greeks living in the country.  According to “Greeks around the Globe”, the Greek-Canadian population now totals some 450,000 people!

Greek Parade in Canada