Fahd, Julie, Sparta and Adeeb Fattouh in their living room of their apartment in Laval.
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Welcomed with open arms – some even received coats from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau himself – the Syrian refugees who arrived in Canada a year ago are now facing their share of difficulties. Among them, 50-year-old Fahd Fattouh came with his wife and their two children after they fled the war-battered city of Aleppo via Beirut in 2012 . They made it to Canada on an airlift organized by the government in December 2015, some of the 35,000 Syrians who have resettled here over the past year.The family has been making ends meet until now thanks to financial aid from Fattouh's brother-in-law, who has lived in Quebec for 25 years.Fattouh has devoted the past seven months to learning French – Quebec's official language – at a free adult education center near his home.It helps that people in Quebec are "very nice," Fattouh says.
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