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Refugees Welcome Here! Open House

    Monday, June 20, 2016 - 16:30 to 20:00

    Refugees Welcome Here! Open House

    A spirited celebration of the contributions of refugees to Ottawa, and of our community's welcome for refugees.  The event is an Open House at Amnesty’s beautiful historic building on Laurier Avenue East and will present an opportunity for the general public to engage in activism for refugee rights.  Inspiring speakers. Light refreshments.  Live music.

    New Canadians Bushra Alarim and Husam Aldakhil will speak about their experience of being welcomed in Ottawa.  Alex Neve, Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada, will open the event.

    We are delighted that Surai Tea will provide its organic jasmine scented teas, handcrafted in Canada and packaged by Syrian-Canadian refugees.

    Musical appearances by Lee Hayes VOX! and by Adesso

    Mark World Refugee Day with us! 

    Join the Facebook event


    Speaker Bios

    Bushra Alarim

    Bushra Alarim is Iraqi-born and came to Canada, escaping from the war, five years ago. Now, she is Canadian citizen.  Over the last twenty years, she has been working in a variety of professional capacities ranging from teaching at the university, researching, and working in and managing clinical labs.  She earned her degrees, BSc, MSc, and PhD, in immunology and microbiology from Baghdad. She has published her research in immunology and bacteriology.  Since she came to Canada, Bushra has volunteered in different places, community field and research.  She has also worked as a research associate at Carleton University.  In addition to working as an interpreter for immigrants at the Catholic Immigration Centre (CCI), she joined the biotechnology program for international skills at Algonquin College and graduated with honours.  She worked as Resettlement Assistance Program (RAP) counselor with Syrian refugees at CCI.  Recently, she has been honoured to be a member of Surai Tea team, as a translator and outreach worker, in addition to work, on call, as a facilitator and interpreter with refugees.

    Husam Aldakhil

    Husam Aldakhil is a Syrian refugee who has recently arrived in Canada. He left Syria in 2015 for Lebanon and immigrated to Canada in February 2016. He was studying Economics at the University of Damascus before he left during his final year. He was unable to complete his degree because the university became targeted with regular mortar and rocket attacks and it became very dangerous for students to stay. He has experience in customer service, microfinance and sales, and speaks Arabic and English. He lives with his Uncle in Ottawa and recently celebrated a symbolic first birthday on Canadian soil. He hopes to complete his degree and is currently going through the credit equivalency process.

    Alex Neve

    Alex Neve became Secretary General of Amnesty International Canada’s English-speaking Branch in January 2000 and has been an active member of Amnesty International since 1985. He has participated in Amnesty International missions to Tanzania, Ghana, Mexico Burundi, Chad, Colombia, Côte d’Ivoïre, Guinea, Honduras, South Africa, Zimbabwe and Grassy Narrows, Ontario. Alex represents Amnesty International at international meetings such as the Summit of the Americas and the G8 Summit. He regularly appears before numerous Canadian parliamentary committees as well as the United Nations and Inter-American human rights bodies.  Alex engages frequently with the media and speaks to audiences across the country on a range of human rights topics.  He delivers keynote speeches and lectures at various venues, including Oxford and Harvard Universities.

    Alex is the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Canadian Centre for International Justice, and a member of the Board of Directors of Partnership Africa Canada. He served as a Trudeau Foundation Mentor from 2008-2009.  In 2009 he was awarded an honourary Doctorate of Laws degree from the University of New Brunswick. Alex was named an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2007. Alex practiced law in Toronto, privately and in a community legal aid clinic, primarily in the areas of refugee and immigration law.  He taught international human rights and refugee law at Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto and was affiliated with the Centre for Refugee Studies at York University.  Prior to taking up his current position he served as a Member of the Immigration and Refugee Board.


    Amnesty House
    312 Laurier Avenue East
    K1N 1H9 Ottawa , Ontario
    Ontario CA