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My Halifax Experience

Don’t just follow, lead

Recently, I had a few friends over. They’re immigrants from various countries in Latin America and we were discussing the political rise of Donald Trump in the U.S., and the complicated challenges the country faces with racial profiling and diversity. We had a deep talk about immigrant engagement in our …

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The language of business

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Saana Makramalla’s tailor shop was a long time in the making. “This is my dream,” she says. She worked in Egypt where for 19 years she taught sewing and other seamstress skills. She moved to Canada in 2004; she and her husband wanted a better life for their children. She …

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Getting connected

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When Jorge Mora moved to Halifax four years ago he found a job, but not one that fulfilled him. A trained accountant, Mora lived in Toronto and then Saint John, New Brunswick, before coming to Halifax. Boredom with his career left him unable to feel settled anywhere. Then he attended …

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Cleaning up in business

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Flavias Maboto has a natural enthusiasm and optimism. That drives her company, Flavias Magical Domestic Cleaning and Cooking. But starting out as an entrepreneur, she wasn’t always sure that was enough. “I never thought I would make a business from it,” she says. But she also knew how to clean …

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Building on dreams

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Nova Scotia needs immigrants and people brave enough to start their own businesses. Getting both in entrepreneurial newcomers can solve the problems simultaneously, according to Laurie Cameron, the head of Halifax’s Centre for Entrepreneurship Education and Development (CEED). CEED works with entrepreneurs to help them turn ideas into reality. “I …

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A smart start

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Smooth is not a word that applies to successful entrepreneur Saeed El-Darahali’s early days in Nova Scotia. When he arrived with his family from Kuwait in 1992 at the age of 12, he didn’t speak English. His parents (an engineer father and teacher mother) couldn’t get work in their professions, …

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Creating your opportunity

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A friend recently asked me if Halifax really is a good place for immigrants to come make a new life. As the founder of a magazine that’s all about answering that question in the affirmative, my first response was obvious. “Of course it is,” I replied. “Why,” he asked, “are …

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Kids will be kids

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Since January, 42 new students from Syria started attending Duc d’Anville Elementary school in Clayton Park. The school already featured a diverse population as about 40 per cent of the 300 plus students speak English as a second language. “We’re used to having people from diverse backgrounds,” says principal Ken …

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