Warm Welcome in a Cold Country

Feb 08, 2019
The change that comes with moving to a new country was not easy for Ahmed and his family, but hope for a better life was what made it worth it.

"My wife and I wanted to move somewhere that was safe, where we could build a future for us and our children. No racism, no fear, and to have the ability to follow our dreams," says Ahmed.

After much consideration and a lot of research, in March, 2017 Ahmed and his wife decided it was the right time to make their move from Israel to Canada - despite how cold the weather was.

"The warm welcome we felt when we first landed at the airport in Toronto was very special; all of the greetings made us feel good. We felt like we were at home," says Ahmed. "But outside those doors we worried about the language barriers, the cold weather, and how our lives have now completely changed."

While they had many obstacles to face in their transition, they knew they had to face them head on in order to have the life they wanted. That is when Ahmed joined Centre for Skills English Language Learning program in his new home city, Milton.

"Despite the hardships along the way, our teacher was so positive and understood what we were going through.

Even when my wife needed an operation and we did not understand everything the doctor was saying, my teacher Ana helped us translate so we could understand what was going on, says Ahmed. "Not only did we learn a new language, we learned important information that helped make our transition into our new life easier.
Ahmed made his way through the program, soon moving onto the advanced language level. It was there he mentioned to his teacher about his desire to open up a barber shop. "She was so happy for me and very supportive."
Now after almost two years in Canada, Ahmed can speak, read and write in English, and is soon to open his new barber shop, Kabha Barber Shop, on Brant Street.
"For any newcomers, I want them to know not to worry. Do not be afraid to ask questions. If it weren't for Centre for Skills, I wouldn't have learned English, and without learning English I would not have been able to advance. Take on those challenges and you can reach your dreams too!"