I've been asked by a few folks recently what camera to buy, in most cases the budget is about $200 Canadian and they don't want to have to learn something too complex. Well, with those constraints my opinion is that while you could buy a camera from just about any company in that price range and be reasonably happy if you are just shooting snapshots of friends and family in well lit situations (out doors or with flash in the standard boring on-camera setup) You might as well look at something by Nikon or Canon in that range or a bit higher (up to $350) to get something that you can set a few other options and grow into a little, rather than grow out of too quickly.
Look for one that has A and S (AKA Av and Tv, Aperture and Shutter priority) modes... and one with a setting for ISO sensitivity. These will be the features that make the most impact on your photography. These will give you control over how dark it can be before you need to resort to turning that flash on, which will let you be a little more creative, and get some images that don't look like everyone else's "deer in the headlights" shots.