Christ Church Cathedral414 Sparks St.

A Reporter's Journey into
the Lives of Others
with Carol Off

Hosted by CBC’s Adrian Harewood
"Off is a smooth and powerful writer.
— The Globe and Mail
Carol Off - Photo courtesy of Kevin Kelly Photography

In her new book, All We Leave Behind: A Reporter's Journey into the Lives of Others, o ne of Canada's most respected journalists, Carol Off, (CBC’s As It Happens) relates the gripping story of a family's desperate attempts to escape Afghan warlords, Taliban oppression, and the persecutions of refugee life.

In 2002, Carol Off and a CBC TV crew encountered an Afghan man with a story to tell. Asad Aryubwal became a key figure in their documentary on the terrible power of thuggish warlords who were working arm in arm with Americans and NATO troops. When Asad publicly exposed the deeds of one of the warlords, General Abdul Rashid Dostum, it set off a chain of events from which there was no turning back. Asad, his wife, Mobina, and their five children had to flee their home.      

The family faced an uncertain future. But their dilemma compelled a journalist to cross the lines of disinterested reporting and become deeply involved. Together, they navigated the Byzantine international bureaucracy and the decidedly unwelcoming policies of Stephen Harper's government until the family finally found a new home.     

Carol Off's powerful account traces not only one family's journey and fraught attempts to immigrate to a safe place, it also illustrates what happens when a journalist becomes irrevocably caught up in the lives of the people in her story and finds herself unable to leave them behind.

Books available for purchase at every event: Proceeds support our free children’s literacy programs.

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