Newcomers in Ottawa – Newcomers’s Story – Meet Basel Al Zoubi

We are the Newcomers in Ottawa community – If you are new to town, you will find support, meet-ups, and information to help you!

This article is part of a project called Newcomers’s Stories, where we share, learn and support newcomers!


Meet Basel AI Zoubi  –  Basel Al Zoubi was among the Syrians in that first wave, arriving in Canada with his wife and three young children on Dec. 31, 2015. He is working as a Wrestling Program Coordinator at OCISO community

Settling in to a new life here has involved challenges, he said — acclimating to the cold weather and learning a new language being the biggest. Al Zoubi said he has been diligently preparing to apply for Canadian citizenship in the new year.

“I will be born again from this life,” he said. “When I get Canadian citizenship it opens all the doors.”

In November 2015, Al Zoubi got a call from the United Nations Refugee Agency and was told that Canada would accept him and his family as refugees.

“It was the best news I’ve ever had,” he says. “Canada was always a big dream for me. It’s the greatest country where I could speak English and not have to learn German, which is a hard language.”

We recently met up with Basel Al to ask about his experience on after 4 years live in Ottawa, see what do he think about Ottawa as a newcomer in Ottawa .


What brought you to Canada? 

We came as refugees by United Nations Refugee Agency

Why did you choose Ottawa ?

My luck and also I like Ottawa very much with many new opportunities for myself and my family

What has been the biggest challenge for you since you came to Ottawa ?

Winter. Culture language

How have you tried to get over that challenge ?

Determination. Positive people and friends.

What are the challenges newcomers face here in Ottawa? What can be done to make it easier for newcomers?

Language. Not easy to have Canadian friends

Are you doing something to help newcomers or are you in interested in participating in activities for newcomers?

I always do that I am helping with my friends with their English.

Any suggestions for those who are new to Ottawa?

There’s many organizations can help jobs language activities and social activities such as Newcomers In Ottawa Facebook Group.

Anything else you want to share with Newcomers in Ottawa ?

My story. I started with basic English. Now I am doing well. Just believe with yourself. And beloved that you can do it. Life not easy but need to try your best and you will get to where you want.


Thank you Newcomers in Ottawa. If you are new ? Join us =>

Woohoo. Thank you Basel so much for sharing your story on our Newcomers’s Story!

We hope you will enjoy to be a part of the group and support more in the community as a newcomer.

If you want to be a part of this Newcomers’s Story, Feel free join us here – answer a few questions and you are ready to go to share your unique story as a newcomers with us. Please click here =>

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