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Saosan Marouch

March 20, 2024

Written by Krishna Sharma, Community Ambassador

Saosan’s journey is one of resilience, dedication, and an unwavering commitment to serving her community. Originally from Syria, she spent most of her life in Dubai, where she managed her own interior design company alongside her architect-engineer husband. However, economic challenges led Saosan to immigrate to Canada in 2018. The 2014 economic crisis caused significant financial strain on her family’s contracting and interior design enterprises, ultimately resulting in bankruptcy. Saosan decided to relocate them to Canada, enticed by the country’s promise and opportunities. Originally intending to immigrate in 2012, the eruption of conflict in Syria and the economic downturn in Dubai hastened their departure. Saosan’s daughters successfully secured admission to universities in Canada, while Saosan obtained permanent residency, discovering solace and a profound sense of belonging in her newfound homeland.


Upon arriving in Canada, Saosan faced obstacles in finding work due to the lack of “Canadian experience.” Saosan reflects on her journey from a comfortable life in Syria to the eye-opening experiences she encountered upon moving to Canada. She never experienced the harsh realities of poverty and hardship in her previous life. However, her transition to Canada revealed a stark contrast—a world where people struggle, where hunger and need are prevalent. Saosan experienced significant changes upon immigrating to Canada, particularly from being a manager with her company to starting from the ground level in a new country. Another challenge was navigating the cultural differences, particularly in how she interacted with others. Coming from a
culture where personal space is minimal and close interaction is common, she was concerned about unintentionally causing offence or misunderstanding in her new environment. To address this, she actively sought newcomer sessions to learn about Canadian culture and etiquette, finding the information invaluable in adjusting her behaviour and communication style.

Additionally, adapting to workplace dynamics and understanding office norms posed another significant hurdle. Through all this, Saosan’s husband remained in Dubai due to financial obligations. Saosan took on both father and mother roles, ensuring her daughters were cared for while balancing their professional responsibilities.

Undeterred by these challenges, she turned to volunteering and discovered her passion for community work, particularly with seniors and families. Saosan’s volunteer experience connecting with multicultural communities was a great asset when applying for the Scarborough Centre for Healthy Communities (SCHC) outreach worker position in April 2021. Starting her new role in May, Saosan quickly adapted to her responsibilities, showcasing her adaptability and dedication, especially during the challenging times of the pandemic. Recognized for her contributions, Saosan was promoted to program coordinator for the High Priority Communities Strategy (HPCS) within SCHC, where she oversaw a team of ambassadors and organized numerous vaccine clinics. Their efforts earned them accolades from the City of Toronto for their outstanding service to the community.

Saosan’s unwavering dedication to serving others has been evident throughout her journey. Despite facing cultural and personal challenges, she remains steadfast in her commitment to making a positive impact. For Saosan, SCHC is more than just a workplace—it’s a family where she can utilize her skills and passion for helping others. Her story inspires many, highlighting the transformative power of compassion, resilience, and community spirit in creating positive change.