My name is Fadi Dalloul, I'm from Syria.
I was living in Lebanon before coming to Canada
I arrived here on July 6th of this year.
When I arrived to Canada I was in Toronto for three days.
So I had to quarantine there for three days.
After that I moved to Windsor.
So I stayed there for fifteen days.
I spent my quarantine time and after that I was
talking with my friends
I'm asking them, which is the best place to live in Canada?
My friends living here in Hamilton,
so it made sense to come to Hamilton.
And actually my friend told me about Hamilton,
it's the Hollywood of Canada.
Because of movies, most of arts are happening here.
It has a very good nature, and mountain, downtown
and it's very close.
Beautiful views, beautiful parks,
actually I like the parks here.
Because I'm living in a house with a lot of people,
so sometimes I need time for me.
It's my space to feel free, to dance, to act, to sing.
Sometimes I sing, but my voice is not very good.
So I used to go to parks like Bayfront sometimes.
Sometimes in the forest
try to see beautiful places, beautiful colours
that make me feel calm
So arts for me, it's my personality.
So, I find myself there.
It's very good when you find yourself in a field
and it will be your hobby, and you make from that too.
Because I have a different mind,
sometimes I feel that I am different,
If you wanted to compare with people.
I used to talk, and to act for the community,
for the problems people are living in.
So that's why when I act
when I do something in arts I'm doing
for myself, for my city, and for people who I love.
Actually when I arrived to Hamilton
so I was looking for a house
to rent because I had some problems with accomodations
on the first days.
So what happened was I met some friends
and they helped me to find a good house to stay in.
They talked to the owner
I'm here for three months, and when I arrived to Canada,
I don't speak anything in english.
So they tried to contact with the owner
they helped me a lot.
You don't have to see the people who I live with, with them.
Very kind people, very supporting and
I don't feel like I'm a stranger between them
because actually, really I
I found them like big brothers for me,
and I like that.
So, I feel comfortable, I feel
I found my family, here.
My name is Fadi Dalloul
To me Hamilton is a warm embrace
and it could be home.
Fadi is a youth facilitator and theatre actor who is passionate about making a difference in communities through the arts. He is also an advocate for the rights and freedoms of the LGBTQI+ community.
Fadi is from Old Damascus, Syria where he worked as a video editor and was enrolled in theatre studies at the Higher Institute of Dramatic Arts. As the Syrian civil war intensified, he was forced to leave the country and emigrated to Lebanon in 2017.
Assisted by the Canadian Embassy and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Fadi came to Canada in July 2021. After short stays in Toronto and Windsor, he chose to live in Hamilton. The city was recommended for having a thriving arts scene where he could grow as an artist.
Syria has produced the world’s largest ongoing refugee crisis. More than 6.6 million Syrians have fled their country since 2011, and another 6.7 million people are displaced within the country. The vast majority – approximately 5.5 million refugees – have found refuge in neighbouring countries, primarily in Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan, Iraq and Egypt.
Turkey hosts the largest number of registered Syrian refugees—currently 3.6 million people. More than a million Syrian refugees are in Lebanon, where daily life is often a struggle. About 70% live below the poverty line. There are no formal refugee camps and, as a result, Syrians are scattered throughout urban and rural communities and locations, often sharing small basic lodgings with other refugee families in overcrowded conditions.
The Government of Canada resettled 25,000 Syrian refugees between November 2015 and February 29, 2016, including government-supported and privately sponsored refugees. By the end of 2020, close to 45,000 Syrians had been resettled in Canada.
More than 1,400 Syrians moved to Hamilton in late 2015 and early 2016, more than half of them children. Hamilton has experienced ongoing Syrian arrivals since 2016.